Franklin Gutierrez's absence leaves Mariners short-handed in outfield
Gutierrez was said to have tightness in his groin area and did not start against Texas on Saturday.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Franklin Gutierrez was out of the starting lineup a second straight game with what is said to be tightness in his groin area.
Mariners trainers worked on Gutierrez throughout Saturday night's game in an attempt to have him ready to possibly come off the bench late. In the event he wasn't ready to go and an injury occurred to Endy Chavez, the team would have gone with Jason Bay in center field and backup infielder Robert Andino in Bay's outfield corner.
"He's pretty tight today," Mariners manager Eric Wedge said. "We have just one extra outfielder, and we can't really take a chance on starting him, losing him and then be without anybody."
Gutierrez is said to have been feeling the tightness in both legs for several days, but Wedge indicated his right leg is worse. Wedge had balked at using Gutierrez in more than four consecutive games since spring training began, but had to play him a fifth game in a row when Michael Saunders got hurt Wednesday.
Wedge said the tightness in Gutierrez's legs is one reason the center fielder does not appear to be covering as much ground as he once did. An error by Gutierrez last Tuesday opened the floodgates for the Houston Astros in an eventual 16-9 loss for the Mariners.
Beavan aiming for
Blake Beavan's arm was ready to be used in long relief on Saturday for the first time since being relegated to bullpen duty after a tough two starts to begin the year. Beavan said his biggest problem hasn't been his mechanics, but the decisions he made on pitches in both starts — most recently a beating by the Astros on Wednesday.
"It's a matter of being smarter, being aware on the situations in the game and the situations in at-bats," Beavan said. "In the second inning, when they got their three runs, I was throwing my changeup when I was ahead 1-2. I was throwing it when I was ahead on batters with runners in scoring position.
"That's my fourth-best pitch. In a situation like that, I should be throwing my slider. If you're going to get beat, you want to get beat making your best pitches and throwing them with conviction. Not getting beat on your fourth-best pitch. That just makes it worse."
Beavan plans to work on his pitch selection in his bullpen outings and hopes to rejoin the rotation at some point.
• Mariners relief pitcher Stephen Pryor has stranded six of seven inherited runners this season after leaving two on in the seventh inning of Friday's game with a 3-1 lead. Pryor has retired 18 of 21 batters faced this season.