Hisashi Iwakuma pushed back in rotation with ongoing blister issues


Apr 28, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma (18) pitches to the Los Angeles Angels during the 1st inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

The Mariners most consistent and quality pitcher in 2013 has undoubtedly been Hisashi Iwakuma. Iwakuma has pitched so well, many close observers forget that he has battled a nagging blister on the middle finger of his pitching since the Spring.

It appears that the blister may finally catch up to Iwakuma, as his scheduled Saturday start against the Blue Jays was moved back to Sunday, Eric Wedge announced before Monday’s win. Joe Saunders, who won his second game of 2013 yesterday in a complete game four-hitter,

So far in 2013, Iwakuma has posted a 1.67 ERA and a 2-1 record in six starts. He ranks fifth in the American League in ERA and third in batting average against (.160). He took a no decision in Sunday’s 2-1 win over the Angels, after throwing six innings without allowing an earned run.

“We didn’t want to push him one more inning and have it get it back to where it has been, even with the extra time,” Wedge told MLB.com’s Greg Johns. “He’s working hard to get over the hump with this thing.”

Saunders is 0-3 with a 12.51 ERA in three road starts for the Mariners this year. The Mariners have Hector Noesi and Blake Beavan in the bullpen to make spot starts in the future if need arises.