The Mariners added seven players to the active roster today, bringing the total number of players available for tonight’s game vs. the Red Sox to 34. Major League Baseball allows teams to expand their active roster to any player on the 40-man roster. Today’s additions included the following players:
- DH/1B Mike Carp recalled from his rehabilitation assignment at AAA Tacoma and activated from 15-day DL
- DH/1B Luis Jimenez selected from AAA Tacoma
- RHP Shawn Kelley recalled from AAA Tacoma
- INF Alex Liddi recalled from AAA Tacoma
- RHP Hector Noesi recalled from AAA Tacoma
- INF Carlos Triunfel recalled from AAA Tacoma
- OF Casper Wells recalled from AAA Tacoma
To make room for Jimenez on the 40-man roster, outfielder Johermyn Chavez was designated for assignment.
Most know about Carp, Kelley, Liddi, Noesi and Wells, who have played for the Mariners already this season, but here is some information on two players who will be making their Major League debuts.
Jimenez (#39), 30, will be making his Major League debut with his first appearance. Named the Tacoma Rainiers Offensive Player of the Year, Jimenez hit .310 (146×471) with 32 doubles, 20 home runs and 81 RBI in 125 games. A PCL All-Star, he hit .364 (36×99) with 19 runs scored, 9 doubles, 1 triple, 7 home runs and 23 RBI over 28 games in August. During the month, he led the PCL in on-base percentage (.462) and OPS (1.148), while ranking 2nd in slugging (.687) and total bases (68), T2nd in extra-base hits (17), 5th in average (.364), T5th in RBI (23) and home runs (7) and T9th in hits (35). Jimenez reached base safely in 28 consecutive games, April 29-June 1, batting .382 (39×102) with 22 runs scored, 8 doubles, 5 home run and 24 RBI; was tied for the 10th-longest streak in the PCL this season.
Triunfel (#8), 22, will be making his Major League debut in his first appearance. He becomes the second-youngest player on the team, the youngest position player (Erasmo Ramirez is two months younger). Triunfel is ranked by Baseball America as Seattle’s No. 25 prospect; listed as having the “Best Infield Arm” in the farm system. He finished 2nd on the Rainiers with 129 hits, 31 doubles, 62 RBI. Carlos set a career-high with 10 home runs (previous: 7, 2010 with West Tenn), 31 doubles (previous: 28, 2011 combined between Jackson and Tacoma) and 62 RBI (previous: 49, 2008 with High Desert). He was named the Rainiers Defensive Player of the Year.
Here is a look at the Mariners active Major League roster:
Over the next five games (starting tonight), the Mariners will send to the mound five different starting pitchers, all from different countries. Erasmo Ramirez (Nicaragua) will start things off and will be followed by Jason Vargas (United States) in the Sunday finale against the Boston Red Sox. The three pitchers who will face off against the Baltimore Orioles starting on Monday will be Hisashi Iwakuma (Japan), Felix Hernandez (Venezuela) and Hector Noesi (Dominican Republic).
That 5-day rotation leads us to ask, how many countries have been represented by Mariners pitchers? When you add in the left-hander from the bullpen Oliver Perez (Mexico), and of course the American-born players, the list grows to seven on the active roster.
Since the Mariners began playing in 1977, pitchers from 12 different coutries have toed the rubber for the team including the United States (271 pitchers), Australia (2), Canada (7), Columbia (1), Cuba (2), Dominican Republic (16), Japan (5), Mexico (5), Nicaragua (2), Puerto Rico (7), South Korea (1) and Venezuela (8).
Here’s a complete list of foreign-born Mariners pitchers:
Day 11 / Wednesday, February 22, 2012 / 35 Days ‘til Opening Night in Tokyo (March 28 vs. Oakland) / 51 Days ‘til Opening Night in Seattle (April 13 vs. Oakland)
Today’s workout started with temperatures hovering around 53° and climbed to near 70° as practice ended. The next few days are supposed to heat up, with high temperatures expected in the 80’s.
The workout was almost a carbon-copy of Day 10. Today’s workout consisted of baserunning on Field 6 from 9:45-10:05. A couple of the players had to be cautious when rounding third base and when they approached home plate due to the field still being a little damp. The team fundamental today was working on pop-ups and infield/outfield communication on Field 3. A group of 16 pitchers threw live BP today on Fields 3, 4 & 5, including Kevin Millwood, Brandon League, Hector Noesi and Hisashi Iwakuma. Mike Carp again put on a hitting display in batting practice and live BP against RHP Scott Patterson.
Quotes of the Day:
“They kind of knocked heads there, but if you are going to have two guys knock heads, those are two pretty good ones” manager Eric Wedge when asked about the pop-up drill when Miguel Olivo and Justin Smoak collided near home plate.
“Cheater” from a group of pitchers to Charlie Furbush as he broke towards first base during PFP drills, but AAA pitching coach Dwight Bernard hit one right back to the mound.
“Polar Bear was trying to get me” from Brandon League as he was almost hit by a high pop fly from the pitching machine during pop-up communications drills.
“Heads up, heavy hitters coming through” from Brendan Ryan to manager Eric Wedge as he led his hitting group consisting of himself, Munenori Kawasaki, Chone Figgins and Dustin Ackley onto Field 3 for live BP.
Outfielder Carlos Peguero celebrated his 25th birthday today.
Tweet of the Day:
— David aardsma (@TheDA53) February 22, 2012
Mark it Down:
The first of four Intrasquad games will be held Friday (Feb. 24) at 12:45 p.m. The game is scheduled to be 8 innings, with Jason Vargas and Danny Hultzen scheduled to be the starting pitchers. A “B” game has also been added to the Cactus League schedule for March 5 at Cincinnati. The “B” games do not count towards the Cactus League records and are designed to get players extra at-bats or additional pitchers innings. Here is an updated listing of recent schedule changes:
|Feb. 24 – 12:45 pm|
|Feb. 26 – 12:45 pm|
|Feb. 28 – 12:45 pm|
|Feb. 29 – TBA|
|March 5 at Cincinnati – 10 am|
|March 8 at Colorado – 10 am|
|Cactus League Game Addition:|
|March 16 vs. Milwaukee (at Tucson) – Split Squad – 1 pm|
Lights, Camera, Action:
The Mariners Marketing crew began shooting the 2012 edition of their award-winning commercials this afternoon. Not going to play the spoiler role, but over the next three days the marketing crew, along with Copacino+Fujikado & Blue Goose Productions will shoot five commercials, featuring 14 players (Felix Hernandez, Ichiro, Brendan Ryan, Justin Smoak, Franklin Gutierrez, Miguel Olivo, Casper Wells, Dustin Ackley, Kyle Seager, Jason Vargas, Brandon League, Jesus Montero, Chone Figgins) and manager Eric Wedge. There may even be a Larry Bernandez sighting! Each year the marketing crew puts together some of the best (and funniest) commercials in all of baseball. The 2011 commercials won an award at the 2011 ProMaxBDA Sports Media Marketing Summit.
Don Carson, the President of Don & Charlie’s restaurant in Scottsdale, and a must-see destination during spring training visited camp this morning…Mariners team photographer Ben Van Houten also arrived in camp to shoot pictures for the commercials and for the publications you will see throughout the season…reporter Shannon Drayer of 710 ESPN Seattle arrived for her first day in camp and will be with the squad throughout the remainder of spring training and in Japan…you can follow her Mariners Blog and her twitter feed for some great information…representatives from Wilson Baseball Gloves had all their mitts lined up for players to look at and order for the upcoming season…the Topps Baseball Card Company also had a representative in the clubhouse talking about upcoming baseball cards…there was again an national media presence in camp with Jorge Arangure (ESPN.com), Bob Nightengale (USA Today) and Dave Sheinin (The Washington Post) covering the Mariners.
Shortstop Brendan Ryan threw on the side for about 5 minutes at 60 feet. Ryan has been sidelined by a sore elbow…Franklin Gutierrez and Trayvon Robinson were limited in practice with hamstring tightness…former Mariner closer David Aardsma, who is coming back from Tommy John surgery, signed as a free agent with the New York Yankees.
Day 9 / Monday, February 20, 2012 / 36 Days ‘til Opening Night in Tokyo / 52 Days ‘til Opening Night in Seattle
Weather: We didn’t check the forecast so we can’t give you an exact temperature for today, but it was clear that today was the nicest, sunniest day that we have had all spring.
Quote of the Day: “It’s okay! I told him what was coming!” – Miguel Olivo to pitcher Josh Kinney after Alex Liddi hit a pitch off the very top of the 30-foot wall that is 410 feet away on Field 3.
The Day: Day 9 saw a continuation of live pitching after the regular routine of infield drills and PFP. The live pitching was by far the most interesting for fans and media alike. Over on Field 4, the Japanese media had the perfect photo opportunity. Right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma was pitching, Ichiro was batting and infielder Munenori Kawasaki was working on reading the pitcher from second base. As you can see, it was quite a scene.
Day 2 / Monday, February 13, 2012 / 43 Days ‘til Opening Night in Tokyo / 59 Days ‘til Opening Night in Seattle
Weather: Sunny skies with temperatures in the low to mid-60 during workouts this morning. Temperatures are continuing to warm up through the afternoon, but rain may be in the forecast for tomorrow.
Quote of the Day: Shortstop Munenori Kawasaki introducing himself to teammates, staff and media: “I am Munenori Kawasaki. Kawasaki…VROOM VROOM.” Kawasaki signed a Minor League contract with the Mariners in January and is excited to be in camp.
The Day: Pitchers and catchers were on field for the second day of camp. After day one and figuring out which field to be on and at what time, day two went smoothly with everyone getting where they needed to be on time.
Sixteen pitchers had bullpens today after 18 did yesterday, including RH Hisashi Iwakumi, RH Hector Noesi, RH Brandon League and RH Kevin Millwood. General Manager Jack Zduriencik and Manager Eric Wedge have been impressed early with the pitchers in camp.
Pitchers continued working on PFP (Pitchers Fielding Practice) drills, including fielding a bunt and covering first on a ball hit to the right side of the infield. Infielders Mike Carp, Kyle Seager and Nick Franklin stood in as first baseman for the pitchers on one of the fields. Catchers also worked on controlling the running game and throwing out runners at second base.
The catchers wrapped up the day split into two hitting groups. While working on hitting to all sides of the field, Jesus Sucre hit a screaming line drive up the middle and nearly took out coach Nasusel Cabrera gathering balls in shallow center field. Cabrera had to jump out of the way and used a ball bucket to deflect the ball. The rest of the coaching staff laughed and continued to give Cabrera a hard time until BP was over. Jesus Montero, Miguel Olivo and Adam Moore each hit multiple home runs into the parking lot.
Noesi made his Major League debut last year at the age of just 24 but he certainly had to wait for his time to come after he was called up. He began the season in the Triple-A before being brought up to New York on April 13. Unfortunately, he was sent back down to the minors on April 22 without ever making an appearance. After he was recalled on May 13, he still had to wait five days before making his MLB debut, but it was worth the wait. Noesi tossed 4.0 shutout innings in a 15-inning affair against the Baltimore Orioles, earning the win in his debut.
Here’s a fun fact about Noesi’s first game: According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Hector became the first Yankee to win his first big league appearance in relief while pitching at least 4.0 scoreless innings, and the first Major Leaguer since Jim Brower for Cleveland on 9/5/99 at Baltimore (4.1IP). He was also the first pitcher to do so in an extra-inning game since Kansas City’s Scott Bankhead on 5/25/86 vs. Chicago (AL)
The Esperanza, Dominican Republic native, will enter camp with a shot to be part of the Mariners starting rotation. As you probably already know, Hector split the 2011 season between the Yankees (mostly) bullpen and AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre where he was 1-1 with a 3.28 ERA (9 ER, 24.2 IP) in six games including five starts. Over the course of his minor league career, he is 25-15 with a 3.17 ERA (133 ER, 377.2 IP) with 365 strikeouts (8.7 K/9.0 IP) in 84 appearances including 64 starts.
Noesi might be new to the Mariners organization, but he’ll already be familiar with some of the players that will be joining him in Peoria.
He’ll of course have catcher Jesus Montero with him when he puts on a Mariners uniform for the first time, but he has also been teammates with a number of other Mariners who will join him in Arizona.
Back in 2010, Noesi was named to the World Team of the 2010 All-Star Futures Game where he teamed up with left-handed pitcher Philippe Valiquette (Canada), infielder Alex Liddi (Italy) and outfielder Carlos Peguero (Dominican Republic) to take on the U.S. Team. All four players will be reunited with the Mariners this spring.
Hector spent this offseason playing at home for the Tigres de Licey in the Dominican Winter League where he was 3-3, 2.70 ERA (14 ER, 46.2 IP) with 27 strikeouts in 10 games, all Hector. While there, he continued to get familiar with some future teammates. Joining him on the Licey team were infielder Carlos Triunfel, outfielder Mike Wilson and Peguero.
While Noesi certainly pitched well this winter, he also had other commitments to attend to. According to this report out of the Dominican, Hector used an off-day in the schedule to plan a wedding. You heard that right! With the help of a friend, he purchased a wedding ring, a wedding dress and shoes, all to surprise his future bride with a well-kept secret.
On November 4, 2011, Noesi tossed 5.0 innings while allowing just one unearned run. This might be the only time that he was happy to be lifted from a game and he quickly left the stadium. After his soon-to-be bride, Yeldi, was informed that they were on their way to an activity that they were both invited to, off they went. When they arrived, the surprise of a lifetime came together. Hector and Yeldi were married in front of family and friends.
At some point during the wedding, Noesi was informed that his Tigres had won the game and he was credited with the win.
Not every day that a pitcher gets two wins in one day.