So, as I said on Saturday, things have been more than a little hectic for me this week. I’ve had some family issues to attend to, and haven’t had a lot of time at home to write. I’ve been keeping up on the news as best I can, however, and finally got some time to sit down and write it all out for you (albeit at the cost of sleep, but hey, I love my readers).
First and foremost, my sincerest condolences to Justin Smoak and his family after his father, Kevin, passed away from cancer at the far-too-young age of 57 on Tuesday. Justin had been placed on the bereavement list earlier that day so that he could be with his father, and it sounds like he did manage to get there in time. I wish Justin and his family the best I possibly can in this difficult time.
For the Mariners, this meant that there’s a roster spot to fill for up to seven days while Smoak is gone, and do so they decided to tap Carlos Peguero for the honors. Already on the 40-man roster after being protected from the Rule 5 draft this past winter, Peguero was an interesting choice, albeit one made easier by being one of the few Rainiers hitting well so far this season.
I made Peguero my breakout pick for Tacoma a couple weeks back, and was glad to see his early success rewarded. However, I do not believe for a moment that Peguero is even remotely ready for such a callup. He is hitting well in AAA, yes, but he’s still learning that level of pitching, and now the Mariners are asking him to face the cream of the crop for a few days, then head back down and keep his previous hitting up. As streaky a hitter as Peguero has showed to be in the past, that might be a tough task for him to handle.
I realize that there really were no other good options for the Mariners there, and I hope that this week in the majors does more good than harm to Peguero in the long run… but I still fear that just the opposite could happen. So far he’s 0-4 with three strikeouts, which should surprise precisely no one who’s familiar with his past in the minors.
Other notes from the past few days:
- Mariners closer David Aardsma had his first rehab appearance with Tacoma on Tuesday. While the results weren’t pretty (1 IP, 2 BB, 1 HR), Aardsma felt good and was thrilled to be out on the mound facing live hitting again. It sounds as though he will have at least one more appearance with the Rainiers, probably on Friday. After that, things will depend on how he’s feeling.
- Speaking of rehabbing Mariners, Franklin Gutierrez had his rehab stint with Tacoma rescheduled to be with High Desert instead after uncertain weather put his playing time in doubt. Then his mysterious stomach ailment flared back up and the entire thing was canceled. Gutierrez instead went to see gastroenterology experts at the Mayo Clinic, one of the country’s foremost facilities for such matters. Still no word on the results.
- The Rainiers have made two transactions. The first was to place the ailing OF Mike Wilson on the DL with his shoulder injury on Monday, replaced by utility man Jetsy Extrano, who had been sent back to extended spring camp just days before. The second, in response to Peguero’s call-up, was to summon OF Brandon Haveman from AA Jackson to fill in for the hulking slugger.
- Jackson had a pair of transactions themselves, placing RHP Steven Hensley on the DL with a back strain (activating RHP Steven Richard from the inactive list in the process), and activating 1B Luis Jimenez from the DL to replace the newly-promoted Haveman.
- Apparently not wanting to feel left out, the High Desert Mavericks had their own DL transaction action. 3B Matt Browning was placed on the DL, and 3B Mario Martinez was activated from it, after starting the year on the DL.