September Call-Ups, Tui Released, Smoak Struggles


A bunch of stuff happening on the I-5 corridor right now. Yesterday was the first day that rosters expanded, so a flurry of moves happened that normally would not have.

  • September Call-Ups

The M’s brought up Cesar Jimenez along with the expected duo of Shawn Kelley and Chris Giminez. We all know what kind of a goofball Jack Zduriencik is (see: Fister for Furbush), so the allure of seeing Jimenez pitch to Gimenez was too great, even if neither is particularly good.

Shawn Kelley is coming back from his sorta-like-but-not-quite-Tommy-John operation. Of the three callups, he clearly has the best chance to impact the big league squad the next time they play a baseball game that matters in the standings. I had actually guessed he’d come up when Wily Mo Pena did, but I was wrong. I was right this time. But so was everyone else.

  • Tui Released

The Mariners don’t like the idea of 40-man rosters. This is the second time this season where they were only at 39 and decided it needed to stay there. They could have simply added Cesar Jiminez to max the roster, even though he’s not really good enough to be on it, but instead they punted local friend Matt Tuiasosopo.

Let’s be frank: Tui isn’t good. If he goes on to be the next Mike Morse, good for him. I wouldn’t count on it, though. I mean, I’d love it if he were. He’s a great kid and part of a wonderful Seattle sports family. He just hasn’t cut it with the stick or the cow hide.

The east-side now experiences the deep hurt that Kitsap County did when Willie Bloomquist left. Super duper sad panda, indeed.

  • Smoak Struggles

Justin Smoak is now 0-11 in his AAA Tacoma rehab assignment. Naturally, though, he was plunked by a pitch in his first at-bat. Anyway, it’s a small sample, and this is a guy who has dealt with much more than any 24 year-old should have to while trying to establish himself with the pressures of a big leaguer.

Remember, his father passed away early in the season. He played through the thumb issues. He took a sick hop to the face. He’s had flashes of brilliance and streaks of struggles. There’s no way for you or I to know how much these problems have hampered his game, so I won’t try to. I’d be happy to give him a mulligan and see how he looks come spring, though.

Remember how annoying the whole “SMOAK BOMB!” thing started to look in game threads on other sites? Yeah, well, I’ve never wanted to be more annoyed in my life. Expect Smoak to play out the final few AAA games and rejoin the “big” squad.