Sucre’s injury ignites flurry of activity

Staff writerJune 5, 2013 

The left wrist injury Seattle Mariners catcher Jesus Sucre suffered Tuesday turned out to be minor.

But it set off a chain reaction of roster moves by the club – none of them directly involving Sucre, who is listed as day to day.

The club selected catcher Brandon Bantz from Triple-A Tacoma, returned shortstop Carlos Triunfel to the Rainiers, and transferred outfielder Franklin Gutierrez to the 60-day disabled list, retroactive to April 23.

“We’re hoping (Sucre’s injury) is a three- or four-day deal; so that’s good news,” Seattle manager Eric Wedge said. “We’ve got Brandon Bantz up here. If Sucre is going to be down, we’ve got to have somebody that can play. We sent Carlos Triunfel down this morning after we got the news on Sucre. So, we’re a little bit thin, but we’re doing what we have to do. It’s part of the big league season.”

There is, of course, a higher-profile catcher available in Tacoma. However, Wedge said that when 2012 first-round draft pick Mike Zunino is promoted to the big leagues it will be because he has developed into the role, not because of short-term need.

“It’s a temporary move,” Wedge said. “Good for (Bantz). He’s a big leaguer. I saw him a few times in spring training. We don’t want to disrupt anyone else down there.”

Veteran Kelly Shoppach started behind the plate for Seattle on Wednesday, and Wedge indicated he’ll get most or all of the work until Sucre is available again.

However, just minutes after stepping into the Safeco Field clubhouse, Bantz said he was grateful for the call.

“It’s been a pretty whirlwind of a last 12 hours or so,” Bantz said. “I got the call about 11:30 last night that there was a possibility I could be coming up here. It was an unreal, surreal experience. It still feels … surreal at the moment. I’m really excited. It’s been a lifelong dream, and I’m really happy to be here, and hopefully I get to contribute any way I can.”

Triunfel had been recalled from Tacoma on May 24 and had gone hitless in 13 at-bats over five games and three starts.

“Obviously, I didn’t really play him a great deal,” Wedge said. “A lot of that has to do with Nick Franklin. He’s off to a nice start. But we need to see (Triunfel) more. I don’t think it’s a bad thing for him to go down and play for a little while. He’s got to be down there at least 10 days, so for him to go down there and play is probably a good thing. But he’ll be back up here.”

Gutierrez is eligible to come off the disabled list June 22.

Wedge said the Mariners might make another move Thursday, in light of the toll taken Wednesday when seven pitchers were used in a 16-inning loss to the White Sox.

SHORT HOPS

Kendrys Morales extended his hitting streak to seven games Wednesday, and to 13 straight at Safeco Field. … With three hits Wednesday, Brendan Ryan has hits in 15 of his last 21 games, and is batting .312 over that stretch. … In the second inning, Franklin stole the first base of his major league career. He took his second in the 16th inning.

ON TAP

The Mariners begin a four-game series with the New York Yankees at 7:10 p.m. Thursday at Safeco Field. Probable starting pitchers are right-hander Aaron Harang (2-5, 5.82 ERA) for Seattle against right-hander Phil Hughes (2-4, 5.37). The game will be broadcast on Root Sports, 1030-AM and 710-AM.

Don Ruiz: 253-597-8808
don.ruiz@thenewstribune.com
blog.thenewstribune.com/mariners
@donruiztnt

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