Mariners Spring Training Recap: Day 7


Seattle Mariners’ position players officially participated in drills for the first time on Thursday morning in Peoria, AZ.

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It has been a long winter in Seattle, and it was great to see the gang reunite in Arizona on Thursday. The Seattle Mariners twitter account posted a video on their twitter account of Felix Hernandez giving Robinson Cano a warm welcome to the desert. There is a bit of a bromance between these two, and it’s rare to see such a genuine friendship in professional sports. The Mariners are hoping to be a surprise playoff team in 2016, and these two characters will likely play big roles in the club’s success.

After King Felix mauled Cano in warmups, the All-Star second baseman joined his buddies Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seager in the batting cage. The M’s twitter account documented the heart of the order taking some batting practice this morning. These three are expected to be the 3, 4 and 5 hitters this season for the Mariners, and they will be charged with powering the offense. Hopefully the improved talent around Cano, Cruz and Seager will allow all three players to post career seasons for Seattle in 2016.

Put simply, the Boomstick is a weapon of mass destruction. The Mariners twitter account posted photographic evidence of just how dangerous Nelson Cruz is to opposing pitchers and apparently, windshields. Literally the only person in the world upset by the picture below is the owner of the car in need of a new windshield. Cruz was magnificent for the M’s in 2015, and many have questioned whether he can replicate his success this season. No one knows what the future holds, but this picture is definitely an encouraging sign for Mariners’ fans.

Fernando Alcala spotted Adam Lind working in the batting cages on Thursday morning in Arizona. The Mariners acquired the 32-year-old from the Milwaukee Brewers this offseason. Lind is expected to function as the M’s first baseman against right-handed pitching in 2016. He is the best first baseman Seattle has had since the ‘good’ Richie Sexson, and his consistent approach at the plate will hopefully lead to more runs this season. Logan Morrison was a fan favorite in the Emerald City, but it is exciting to have such an accomplished first baseman in the Mariners’ lineup.

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Speaking of first base, Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune shared a short clip of Dae-Ho Lee fielding ground balls. Lee is widely known for his power at the plate, but he is said to also be an adequate defender at first base. The Mariners signed the 33-year-old this offseason to compete with Jesus Montero and Gaby Sanchez to be Adam Lind’s platoon partner in 2016. Lee spent 15 years playing professionally in Korea and Japan, and he told reporters today that the opportunity to play in the Major Leagues is a dream come true. It will be interesting to see how Lee fares in Cactus League action.

It is hard to believe, but the next significant event on the MLB calendar is the start of spring training games on February 28. The regular season is just around the corner, and you can almost smell the garlic fries wafting through the Seattle air. In the spirit of the Republican debate tonight, Jerry Dipoto set out to “make the Mariners great again” this offseason, and we will soon find out if he succeeded.

Next: Mariners Top 20 Prospects: #8 CF Luis Liberato

Make sure you check back tomorrow evening at SoDo Mojo for a recap of Friday’s action in Arizona.