Mariners send Justin Smoak to Tacoma

Because there just wasn’t enough going on in the world of Seattle sports today…

Justin Smoak, the Mariners struggling first baseman, was sent to Tacoma following another Oh-fer performance on Monday night. The Mariners had high hopes this season for Smoak, who was the key piece in the trade that send Cliff Lee to Texas, but he was hitting just .189 following the Mariners 4-1 loss Monday. And after watching Smoak get just four hits in 11 games since the All Star break, Mariners manager Eric Wedge and GM Jack Zduriencik decided it was time to send Smoak down.

“This is for him,” Wedge said. “This is what we feel like is the right thing for him right now. To give him a break, to give him a different environment without the pressure of being in the big leagues to where he can go down there and work and get on track and find it.

“I believe in Justin Smoak and I believe he’s going to be a part of this. But right now we feel like this is the right thing to do for him.”

Wedge said Mike Carp, who has been in Tacoma on a rehab assignment, will join the Mariners, who will still have another roster spot available following the trade of Ichiro Suzuki.

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