M's notebook: Soriano ready for next move
Mariners reliever Rafael Soriano threw long toss before yesterday's game, continuing his rehabilitation from last year's elbow surgery. The Mariners will likely send...
Seattle Times staff reporter
Mariners reliever Rafael Soriano threw long toss before yesterday's game, continuing his rehabilitation from last year's elbow surgery. The Mariners will likely send Soriano to Class AA San Antonio, where the plan is to get him into a regular bullpen role as if he were on the active roster and available to pitch daily or every other day.
"We're probably going to have a couple more days of flat-ground throwing. And when he feels really good on flat ground, we'll get him on the mound for a bullpen [session]," Mariners pitching coach Bryan Price said. "And hopefully that's in the next several days."
Soriano's timetable to return is indefinite, and clearly the team is being very careful with him. The right-hander has pitched for Everett, Inland Empire and San Antonio since his rehabilitation assignment began June 24, never for longer than two innings in seven outings.
Soriano said he felt good throwing yesterday and that he expects to work off a bullpen mound on Wednesday in Tacoma.
"We're designating his innings, how much he can throw, what he has to do in between outings," Price said. "And when we're able to completely remove that responsibility and just release him to go out there and play, then I think we can start looking at him as being fully recovered and starting to make a push to get back here and help us."
Praise for Morse
Seattle shortstop Mike Morse came through yesterday with his second critical hit in as many games. He singled to drive in the winning run in the ninth inning Saturday night and drove in two runs with a single in the sixth yesterday to give the Mariners a 4-1 lead.
"Mike continues to do things to make you keep him in the lineup," manager Mike Hargrove said. "... And we will. The kid's got good plate discipline. He's got a good eye at the plate. He knows the strike zone. He has an idea of what the pitcher's trying to do to him."
The Mariners activated infielder Dave Hansen from the 15-day disabled list after yesterday's game. Hansen was out with left elbow tendinitis.
To make room on the active roster, outfielder Chris Snelling was optioned to AAA Tacoma. Snelling appeared in four games and did not get a hit in five at-bats, while Hansen is batting .194 with only 31 at-bats this season.
• Mariners C Dan Wilson said it could be at least six weeks before he is able to start running on his surgically repaired right knee. There is still swelling in the knee, but Wilson said he is feeling better and is building up strength.
• Third baseman Adrian Beltre drew his first intentional walk of the season. He was intentionally walked nine times with the Los Angeles Dodgers last season.
• The Mariners are 24-8 against Baltimore at Safeco Field.
• Washington State Gov. Christine Gregoire threw out the ceremonial first pitch yesterday.
Seattle Times transportation reporter Mike Lindblom describes some of the factors that may have led to the collapse of the I-5 bridge over the Skagit River in Mount Vernon on Thursday, May 23.