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News » Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-16

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-16

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-16
The Mariners aren't calling it a bullpen-by-committee because they don't much like the sound of that strategy.

But that is the reality after manager Don Wakamatsu said before Friday's game that he was moving closer Brandon Morrow into middle relief for the time being. He also said he would mix and match his closers until, presumably, Morrow gets his command back.

Morrow blew saves Wednesday and Thursday in Texas, a one-run lead in the 11th the first day and a two-run lead in the ninth the next. Those were his second and third games since coming off the disabled list May 9 (right biceps tendinitis), and the Mariners seem to believe he needs to build up his arm strength after having gone 17 days without pitching in a game.

So right-hander David Aardsma will get a chance to close for now. But Wakamatsu also said that he would match up his pitchers with the situation and said that right-handers Mark Lowe and Miguel Batista would also be in the running to sub for Morrow.

"I talked to Brandon today," Wakamatsu said, "and told him what we are going to do with him is to put him in the bullpen, not in the closer's role but give him some innings and get him to where he feels he can command the baseball better.

"We've basically told him if he goes out there and commands the baseball, he's going to be successful. And that will give us an indication of (when a return to closing) will be."

MARINERS 5, RED SOX 4: RF Ichiro Suzuki hit home runs in consecutive innings to rally the Mariners from an early 4-0 deficit Friday for Seattle's second win in the last 11 games.

Ichiro started the comeback with his third homer of the year, a solo shot to right in the fifth inning.

CF Franklin Gutierrez delivered a two-run, two-out single in the sixth that cut the deficit to 4-3, and Ichiro followed with his second homer of the game, both of them off LHP Jon Lester, against whom he had never homered before Friday.

The rally made a winner out of rookie RHP Chris Jakubauskas, who had lost four consecutive decisions before giving up four runs early. However, one of the runs was unearned and Jakubauskas retired eight of the last nine men he faced, the final six in succession.

RHP David Aardsma, pitching because RHP Brandon Morrow has been temporarily removed from the closer's role, gave up a two-out single in the ninth but picked up his fourth save in four tries when LF Jason Bay flew out to the left field wall, ending a three-game Seattle losing streak.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: May 16, 2009

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