A pair of 2013 MLB All Stars made an appearance Monday at Cheney Stadium, but neither was able to provide much of a boost to the Tacoma Rainiers.
Mariners pitcher Hasashi Iwakuma and shortstop Jean Segura, who are both expected to return to Seattle’s lineup this weekend, suited up for Tacoma against Salt Lake.
Iwakuma, who was placed on the 10-Day disabled list May 7 with right shoulder soreness, threw 49 pitches – 32 for strikes – and was pulled after the second inning. He allowed four hits, four earned runs, two walks and recorded three strikeouts.
He looked comfortable to start, striking out the first two Salt Lake batters, but Kaleb Cowart clobbered the first pitch of the next at-bat to left-center field for the game’s first run.
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Iwakuma’s struggles continued in the second. He issued a four-pitch leadoff walk before giving up a single to Cesar Puello. Soon, the bases were loaded with no outs. Two more singles and an error ballooned the Bees’ lead to 4-1.
“Overall, I felt so-so,” Iwakuma said. “I just couldn’t find my command and fell behind in the count.
“You don’t do that if you can command your pitches. I wasn’t doing that … it’s just not being able to execute your pitches.”
Segura, who suffered a high sprain on his right ankle June 1 after sliding into second base against Colorado, finished 0-for-3 with a run scored. He signed autographs for fans on the third-base line before the game, but that was the most action he saw in the infield. No balls were hit his direction during his five innings at shortstop.
Segura scored a run without exerting much energy, advancing from first to third on a pair of walks before jogging home on Gordon Beckham’s RBI single in the fifth.
Tacoma lost to the Bees, 6-3.
The plan is still uncertain for Segura and Iwakuma, but it’s possible Rainiers fans will get to see the two again before they rejoin the Mariners.