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News » Seattle Mariners Notes, Quotes 2009-01-29

Seattle Mariners Notes, Quotes 2009-01-29

Seattle Mariners Notes, Quotes 2009-01-29
--The Mariners picked up a versatile player and a potential starting pitcher in a three-player deal with the Cubs. INF/OF Ronny Cedeno, who played five positions for Chicago last year, and LHP Garrett Olson, recently acquired by the Cubs from the Orioles, were sent to Seattle in exchange for RHP Aaron Heilman.

Heilman had been acquired by the Mariners from the Mets in the deal that sent RHP J.J. Putz to New York.

Cedeno will be given a look at both second base and shortstop this spring, GM Jack Zduriencik said. The 25-year-old is a .252 career hitter with little power.

Olson made 26 starts for Baltimore last year, going 9-10 with a 6.65 ERA. The 25-year-old will have a shot to win a rotation job, according to Zduriencik.

--RHP Randy Messenger, 27, was released by the Mariners to clear a roster spot following the two-for-one trade that brought in INF/OF Ronny Cedeno and LHP Garrett Olson. In 13 relief appearances for Seattle last year, Messenger had no decisions, one save and a 3.55 ERA.

--RHP David Aardsma might get a chance at showing he can close this spring for Seattle. He was acquired from Boston for Class A LHP Fabian Williamson.

--C Kenji Johjima will fly from Japan to Arizona to meet with manager Don Wakamatsu on Feb. 10-12, before his stint as the catcher for Team Japan in the World Baseball Classic. "Obviously, he wants to start the year off right," Wakamatsu said. "It's quite a commitment to him to come all the way from Japan prior to the WBC."

--RHP Carlos Silva reportedly has lost in excess of 20 pounds since last season as he prepares for his second season with the Mariners.

--3B Adrian Beltre's status as a starter for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic is up in the air. General manager Jack Zduriencik said it "still remains to be determined" whether Beltre will play after he had shoulder and thumb surgeries last September. "I know he wants to, but obviously with the injury, there are issues we're concerned with, and he should be as well," Zduriencik said. "I think he'll get more medical advice ... as we move forward on that."

--RHP Mark Lowe said he is eagerly looking forward to getting a chance to compete for the chance to be Seattle's closer. "I feel great physically, and it's the job I've always wanted," he said. "I'm looking forward to it. But I'm a team guy, too, and the most important thing is to win."

--OF Ken Griffey Jr. doesn't appear to be particularly close to getting his wish of a return to Seattle. The Mariners have not even talked with Dr. Timothy Kremcheck, the Reds' team orthopedist, who arthroscopically repaired Griffey's left knee late last season. Kremcheck, however, said Griffey should be once again able to use his left leg to generate power.

--RHP Aaron Heilman has been a member of the Mets' bullpen since 2005. But he never gave up his desire to be a starting pitcher, and he'll get a chance to start with the Mariners this spring. However, he's just one of seven players who will get the chance. "All you can ever ask for is a chance to compete and show what you've got and try to win a job," Heilman said. "I know we've got a lot of starting pitching here -- and a lot of good starting pitching here -- so it's not going to be an easy task."

BY THE NUMBERS: 15 -- Home runs hit last year by the current starting outfield -- LF Endy Chavez (1), CF Franklin Gutierrez (8) and RF Ichiro Suzuki (6).

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I want to add another productive bat, definitely. It has to be the right fit, in the field and financially, too." -- General manager Jack Zduriencik.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: January 29, 2009

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