By Aaron Lommers Herald Writer
EVERETT — For Seattle Mariners fans that can’t handle not seeing their team in action during the All-Star break, there might be a solution to your problem.
Head to Everett.
The next two starting pitchers for the AquaSox are familiar faces to avid Mariners fans. Relief pitcher Stephen Pryor will start tonight in the second game of a three-game series with the Vancouver Canadians and starting pitcher Erasmo Ramirez will start Wednesday’s series finale.
AquaSox manager Rob Mummau said the priority with both players is simple.
“Just that they finish the game healthy, that’s the main thing, and get them ready to get back to the big leagues,” he said.
As of Monday, Mummau said he wasn’t sure if he would have any limitations as to how long either player would pitch.
Pryor has been on the 60-day disabled list since mid-April with a torn right lat muscle. Ramirez appeared destined to join the M’s starting rotation to start the regular season, but a triceps injury derailed any such chance. Ramirez made his Class AAA debut in late May and pitched his first game for the Mariners last Thursday, giving up seven runs in 42/3 innings in a loss to Boston.
The Mariners demoted Ramirez to Everett the following day, but only so he could pitch on his scheduled day, and he will rejoin the M’s after the All-Star break.
Mummau said having familiar faces from the Mariners is a treat for the fans.
“I think it is a really good experience and knowing that they will be here and they get a first-hand look at them here, it’s great,” he said. “It’s great for the fans out here in Everett.”
Franklin Gutierrez, the Mariners oft-injured center fielder, took batting practice with the AquaSox on Monday.
Gutierrez was activated from the 60-day disabled list prior to a June 23 game against the Oakland Athletics after missing two months with hamstring problems.
But he didn’t even get through the first game. Gutierrez left the game after six innings with what the team called a tight hamstring.
Mummau said Gutierrez looked healthy on Monday.
“He looked really good running around and swinging the bat,” Mummau said.
Mummau added that Gutierrez may be back for BP again today.