Saturday, February 20, 2016 / 44 Days ‘til Opening Day (April 4 at Texas Rangers)
Manager Scott Servais Media Session
Manager Scott Servais, in his first full media session of the spring, told the assembled writers, broadcasters and radio crew in attendance that is would be a pretty safe assumption that Felix Hernandez would be the Opening Day starter in Texas on April 4. Felix is 6-0 with a 1.49 Earned Run Average in his 8 career Opening Day starts. The 2016 lid-lifter will mark his 8th consecutive (2009-2016) Opening Day start, the longest streak in the Majors. And, in more bad news for the Rangers, Felix was 5-0 with a 1.83 ERA in his 5 starts vs. Texas last season.
Felix Hernandez – On The Record
Felix Hernandez met with the beat media following today’s workout and touched on topics both pertinent (new manager Scott Servais, Spring Training Day #1, Opening Day) and jovial (his new hairdo).
PFP – Pitchers Fielding Practice
A staple of Spring Training is PFP (pitchers fielding practice), which covers everything from covering first base, working on pickoffs, fielding bunts…among the drills done by the pithers today was a version of PFP (Pitchers Fielding Practice) that had pairs of hurlers alternating in the bullpens on the side of the practice field mimicking their throwing motions. As they came to a stop, a coach would hit a ragball (a soft version of a regulation baseball) as hard as they could back at the pitcher, helping them get used to balls up the middle at full speed.
Bullpens – Taijuan Walker, Wade Miley & Joel Peralta
Several pitchers tossed their first official bullpens of the spring and the first group included right-hander Taijuan Walker, left-hander Wade Miley and right-hander Joel Peralta. Closer Steve Cishek was part of the next group and as the Seattle Times’ tweeted, you can see a slow motion video of his delivery.
Catchers not only caught bullpens today, they also worked on framing pitches…one of the skills you don’t see in a box score. Dan Wilson and bullpen catcher Fleming Baez fed baseballs into the machine while each receiver took a turn framing.
Green Screen for MarinersVision
The Mariners marketing crew continued their work today and began having players come in to shoot some of the in-game features and interviews that will be shown througout the season. Chris Iannetta was one of the first players to go through the setup that included a sit-down portion and even a part that had him walking on a treadmill.
If you like to collect autographs, Spring Training is the best time to add to your collection. If you line up at autograph alley, odds are you have success as players stop by after practice to spend time with the fans.
Quote of the Day
“It’s not how you start…” – Joel Peralta, after “winning” the last conditioning race of the day. He gave himself a Seinfeldian 20-yard headstart in the 60 yard run. Peralta, a youthful 39, was running with a foursome of 20-something pitchers, including Danny Hultzen and Justin De Fratus.
Mariners Spring Photos
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