Mariners Insider Blog

Against LHP Sale, a new-look lineup

When Seattle Mariners manager Eric Wedge was told this morning his lineup was 'interesting,' he nodded in agreement.

"We're facing an interesting pitcher," he said.

The White Sox will start left-hander Chris Sale, who's not only 6-2 with a 2.34 ERA, but has dominating hitters with a big breaking ball and a fastball with which he has commanded corners.

"We mixed it up a little today," Wedge said. "(Kyle) Seager needed a day,he's been carrying a lot of weight for us lately, and he might have needed a mental day.

"We dropped (Dustin) Ackley from second to fifth to break up our left-handed hitters, and we're catching (Jesus) Montero because he hasn't been back there in three or four days."

Asked about Ichiro moving to leadoff - then hitting two home runs in a game - Wedge smiled.

"Ironic," he said.

The other pre-game issue: a bullpen likely to be a bit short after Saturday's 12-inning win. Who's not available? Tom Wilhelmsen and Brandon League, and Hisashi Iwakuma has never pitched in back-to-back games.

Can he?

"We may find out today," Wedge said.

Here's today's lineup:

Ichiro RFChone Figgins LFJesus Montero CJustin Smoak 1BDustin Ackldey 2BMiguel Olivo DHMichael Saunders CFAkex Liddi 3BBrendan Ryan SSKevin Millwood RHP