MARINERS 6, ROCKIES 3
(AT SALT RIVER FIELDS, SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ.)
Manager Lloyd McClendon said Walker will draw the fourth start of the season behind righty Felix Hernandez, lefty James Paxton and righty Hisashi Iwakuma. That drops lefty J.A. Happ to the fifth slot.
“We’re just trying to go left-right as much as we can,” McClendon said.
Walker earned his spot by going 4-0 in seven starts while giving up just two runs in 27 innings. The Rockies’ run came when Justin Morneau hit a high fly to right that had just enough carry to clear the right-field wall.
“I feel like I threw my off-speed pitches for strikes (this spring),” Walker said. “I gained a lot of confidence this spring going into the season.”
The homer, which came in Morrison’s only at-bat, followed an RBI single in his only at-bat on Friday and allowed him to exit a disappointing spring on an uptick.
“I have to fight being very analytical,” said Morrison, who had 15 hits in 60 at-bats. “I just have to put that on the back burner a little bit.
“Just think, ‘OK, the swing’s not where I want it to be, but it’s still good enough to go out there and compete.’ You’ve just got to be better than the guy on the mound.”
• Selected the contract of rookie lefty reliever Tyler Olson, who spent most of last season at Double-A Jackson.
Olson, 25, had been in camp as a nonroster invitee and is expected to retain the No. 66 he wore in spring training.
• Placed shortstop Chris Taylor, 24, on the 15-day disabled list because of a broken bone in his right wrist, which occurred when he was struck by a foul ball in a March 13 game against Milwaukee.
Taylor’s time is retroactive to March 27.
Right-hander Felix Hernandez (16-5, 2.14 ERA in 2014) will face Angels right-hander Jered Weaver (18-9, 3.59).