They are here, they have worked out, and the Seattle Mariners are officially ready for opening day.
The roster is set. The lineup has been written.
With Ichiro still in Arizona, working out and trying to recuperate from a bleeding ulcer, the Mariners will honor him by hanging his jersey in their dugout during the series in Minneapolis. Ichiro will join the team in Oakland, although he won't be eligible to play until April 15.
Felix Hernandez is the opening day starter. Brandon Morrow the opening day closer.
"We're not a finished product," manager Don Wakamatsu said. "We're going to try to play our game, and we're going to use our entire roster. I expect to use the entire bench in this series."
Almost everyone who has an audience has picked this team to finish fourth in the American League West. The Mariners believe – from GM Jack Zduriencik to rookie Matt Tuiasosopo – they can surprise people.
Soon enough, we'll begin finding out.
The first lineup:
Endy Chavez LF
Franklin Guttierrez CF
Mike Sweeney DH
Adrian Beltre 3B
Ken Griffey Jr. RF
Jose Lopez 2B
Russell Branyan 1B
Kenji Johjima C
Yuniesky Betancourt SS