Brandon League has rocky outing against Dodgers | Mariners notebook
The former closer had been showing progress in recent outings, but gave up four hits and two runs Sunday against Los Angeles.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Mariners manager Eric Wedge raved before Sunday's game about Brandon League's progress, and forecast a return to the closer's role for him. He was particularly happy with League's work in Friday's no-hitter, in which he got out of an eighth-inning jam by getting two outs, including a strikeout.
"We feel the last time out was everything we were looking for," Wedge said. "That was it. That was everything, from the way he carried himself to the stuff to the competition to the situation. And we felt, really, the three previous times he threw the ball was pretty good, too. Pretty consistent. We feel he's right there."
League, however, pitched in Sunday's 8-2 loss, and the results were not nearly as impressive. The Dodgers bunched four straight hits for two runs before League got out of the inning.
"Obviously, he had some guys who squared him up a little bit today," Wedge said. "It's a process. He has been better, but today wasn't a good day for him. We'll continue to evaluate, continue to recognize what we need to see before we do anything else."
Here's what Wedge had said before the game about his plans for the closer's job.
"Tom (Wilhelmsen) has done a nice job for us late in the ballgame. We've had a lot of other guys in the bullpen do a nice job, too. We'll stay where we are today. At some point in time, sooner or later, we'll look to get Leaguer another shot at closing.
"I'm not going to do that on a whim. I'm going to have a conversation with him first. I'm not going to surprise anybody. We haven't had that conversation yet."
Wedge said Franklin Gutierrez's rehab with Tacoma is going well, and he will accompany the Rainiers on their upcoming trip.
"He's playing outfield, doing really well running," Wedge said. "We've got about a week left to play with of rehab time. Barring something happening, we still plan to send him out on the road and let him have a few more games and a few more at-bats."
Wedge still hopes Kevin Millwood, who played catch Sunday without apparent problem after straining his groin on Friday, will make his next scheduled start.
"That's the working plan," Wedge said. "We have some leeway with the off day. We could push him back a couple of days."
Tag nearly gets
M's out of jam
Kyle Seager nearly made a great diving tag on Tony Gwynn Jr. at third base in the second inning, but Gwynn jarred the ball loose with his slide. That would have gotten the Mariners out of the inning, but Andre Ethier went on to hit a grand slam for a 6-0 Dodgers lead.
"I think if I hold onto that ball, he's out," Seager said. "I watched the replay, and I believe I got to him before he got to the bag. But the ball got loose."
Larry Stone: 206-464-3146 or email@example.com