Franklin Gutierrez makes his first start in center field for the Seattle Mariners since last Sept. 1, and he'll bat eighth in the newest Mariners lineup - the 54th in 65 games this season.
Gutierrez, the former Gold Glove defender, gives the Mariners as good a defensive outfield as they can run out there: Gutierrez in center flanked by left fielder Michael Saunders and right fielder Ichiro. The only way to improve it might be inserting Casper Wells for Ichiro - but you'll get gray hairs waiting for that move.
Erasmo Ramirez, the No. 6 starter when Seattle broke camp with a five-man rotation, will make his first career start tonight against the San Diego Padres. Solid in relief early in 2012, he returns to the role that moved him through the entire Mariners minor league season.
With young pitching coming from the minors - Dan Hultzen James Paxton, Taijuan Walker - Ramirez is the first to get the chance to show his minor league success has prepared him for the next level.
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The lineup vs. RHP Edinson Volquez:
Ichiro RFDustin Ackley 2BKyle Seager 3BJesus Montero CJustin Smoak 1BMichael Saunders LFJohn Jaso DHFranklin Gutierrez CFMunenori Kawasaki SSErasmo Ramirez RHP