Seattle Mariners eye Opening Day

The Seattle Mariners are now ten days away from Opening Day, a March 31st trip to Anaheim to open a three game series against the Angels.  The Mariners have made a big splash in free agency adding Robinson Cano and Fernando Rodney.  With early injuries taking their toll on the rotation, Mariners fans waited for another possible move or two to be made before Opening Day.  However, when the Mariners passed on signing Ervin Santana, who signed a one year deal with the Braves, it is looking more and more like the Mariners will make no more moves before Opening Day.

The Mariners first 16 games are against divisional opponents, with 11 of those games being played on the road.  We’ve been waiting for adding another veteran to the rotation to offset the injuries to Taijuan Walker and Hisashi Iwakuma, but it looks like we’re playing the hand we’re dealt.  With the injuries, the rotation looks to be Felix Hernandez, Scott Baker, Erasmo Ramirez, Blake Beavan, and James Paxton.  None of this is official, of course, and spots may still go to Randy Wolf and Brandon Maurer.  Maurer, though, has struggled with back problems in Spring and may be out of the running.  Right now, I would give the No. 2 in the rotation behind Felix to Erasmo Ramirez.  Ramirez is following up a solid second half (5-3, 4.98 ERA after his call-up) with an excellent Spring.  In 18 2/3 innings, Ramirez has posted an 0.96 ERA with 14 strike outs and 2 walks.

With a strong second half of last season and an excellent Spring, Erasmo Ramirez would be my choice for the No. 2 rotation spot behind Felix to open the season.

With a strong second half of last season and an excellent Spring, Erasmo Ramirez would be my choice for the No. 2 rotation spot behind Felix to open the season.

But, if the Mariners did make a move in the next two days, what would it be?  With Brad Miller looking to have won the starting SS spot, rumors continue to fly that Nick Franklin, last year’s starting 2B, will be traded.  The Tigers, who just lost Jose Iglesias for the season, have been added to the possible suitors list along with the Mets, Rays, and Orioles.  The Mariners definitely have some holes in the roster.  Besides the youth in the rotation, the OF lacks a lot of experience and a veteran back-up who could start if there are injuries would be a nice luxury.  The Mariners are also still in talks with last year’s DH Kendrys Morales.  Like Robinson Cano said earlier in the Spring, I agree this team needs Morales, a right-handed power bat, to balance this line-up.  But, unfortunately for Mariners fans, the two sides remain apart on negotiations.  Right now, the starting DH is Corey Hart who will be looking to put an awful Spring behind him.  Hart is 4-for-31 with 16 strike outs, not encouraging numbers for a guy who will be in the middle of the Mariners’ order come Opening Day.

  • lee cousins

    + This is going to be interesting this year just what can we expect, theirs no secret were all looking at this year with some anticipation the changes in roster look to be better although we won’t know what players will show up, and those who will not…. when you come from a team who’s played below 500 their needs to be a hold lot of tweaking going on to make up for it , unfortunately we don’t have the payroll like a New York, or a Boston does otherwise like Boston we will win the World Series this year, of course I’m thinking salary cap, well maybe in the future before ticket prices keep rising this will work it self out, but I seem to have gotten; is that a word? gotten of track here I wanted to say something about the Cano signing a lot of people think that we should of spread the money around better to fill in some holes we have, and that might provide for a worthy argument, but theirs also the this… Cano’s one of those special players, more than likely a hall of famer if not already what he does especially on a young team is bring the level of play up to a higher level, and this team can use all the encouragement it can to be better, so in this way it’s like were getting more than just the one player here, I look to see some improvement across the board this will be better than last year ……play ball.