Greetings from Arizona. It's my second day down here, my first working. I caught the last few innings of yesterday's game with the Giants.
But for the next five or six days, I will be navigating the blog.
Something I'm very interested in watching will be Jack Wilson's play at second base today. This will be the second game he starts. I didn't see his first start there. But I was told there were some eventful moments.
No matter how good Wilson was at shortstop defensively, the change to second base isn't just that simple. Chone Figgins is one of the better athletes I've seen in professional baseball, and he actually played some second base early in his career, and yet we saw how difficult the transition was for him last year.
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A lot of people discuss the double play turn as being vital. It's what Dustin Ackley needs to work on most. But there is more to playing second base than that. It's also how the ball comes off the bat, determining where you are at on the field, particularly when you move to your left and right and understanding how much time you have left to throw to first. Yes, the throw is shorter, but often times balls hit to second base aren't hit as hard either. So it can be an illusion that you have more time to throw.
I applaud Eric Wedge's decision to open up the competition at shortstop between Wilson and Brendan Ryan. At this point in their careers, I believe Ryan is the better defender, and obviously more durable. But at this point, Ryan isn't as much of a liability at second base. If Wilson can't get to the point where the Mariners are comfortable with him at second base, then they should just play him at shortstop till he gets hurt. And, yes, I think Dustin Ackley should start the season in Triple A
Milton Bradley was in the clubhouse this morning. He is not in the lineup. He is supposed to meet with LA County prosecutors today along with his wife to determine whether authorities want to proceed with any further charges in his case.
Look I'm not going to act like some moral authority about Bradley's actions. But if the radaronline.com report is true, then Bradley certainly has some issues that need to be dealt with.
- Ichiro RF
- Chone Figgins 3B
- Franklin Gutierrez CF
- Jack Cust DH
- Adam Kennedy 1B
- Jack Wilson 2B
- Michael Saunders LF
- Josh Bard C
- Josh Wilson SS
RHP Doug Fister
Other pitches scheduled to pitch -- RHP David Pauley, LHP Garrett Olson, RHP Brandon League, RHP Dan Cortes, LHP Royce Ring, LHP Edwin Paredes, RHP Chaz Roe.