The emphasis this spring for the Seattle Mariners is one-on-one coaching, and manager Don Wakamatsu didn't even wait until the team's first workout to start the process.
On one of the fields in Peoria, catchers, a few outfielders and infielders took informal batting practice without coaches.
Although he was scheduled to take an 11 a.m. physical, Wakamatsu showed up – in shorts and a t-shirt – to watch about five minutes of batting practice. Jamie Burke, a non-roster invitee this year, took a dozen swings and came out of the cage.
Wakamatsu took two minutes to talk to Burke about his front shoulder, Burke nodding and trying a slightly different slow-motion swing.
After a few moments, Wakamatsu trotted off to take his physical and Burke returned to his cage wok. It was a moment that may be repeated all spring by different coaches and players.
Burke was charmed by the attention. Wakamatsu got a small point across.
It's a start.