The Mariners whooped up on the Giants 6-2 today in Scottsdale, where you could pick any number of highlights.
Chone Figgins continued his hitless spring but also his ability to be the perfect complement to Ichiro Suzuki at the second spot in the batting order. Figgins walked three times, giving him seven in 16 plate appearances and a .438 on-base percentage. After Ichiro doubled off Tim Lincecum to start the game, Figgins walked and they pulled a double steal that set up Ryan Garko’s two-run single.
“Those two guys at the top of the lineup are going to be like gnats,” Giants manager Bruce Botchy said.
Ian Snell gave up a single to the first hitter he faced, Aaron Rowand, and mowed down the Giants the rest of the way. Snell has allowed one earned run in five exhibition innings.
The guy who really starred in manager Don Wakamatsu’s eye was catcher Adam Moore, who’s doing nothing so far to show he can’t play at this level. Moore threw out Rowand trying to steal in the first inning, impressively fielded a couple of bunts and went 1-for-2 with two walks to push his average to .571. That’s a pretty complete catcher, and Moore is fast growing on Wakamatsu.
“I really like what’s going on behind the plate,” Wakamatsu said. “He threw a runner out and made a couple of nice bunt plays. Just the way he’s moving back there.”
Moore gave Wakamatsu a taste of what he can do in six starts last September, and hasn’t done anything but impress the right people in spring training.
“I liked what I saw last year,” Wakamatsu said. “But I think some of the adjustments he and Roger (Hansen, Mariners catching coordinator) are making defensively have helped the way he moves around. That’s what you look for.”
As we wrote this morning, Moore will catch Felix Hernandez on Sunday against the Rockies in Tucson, even though Rob Johnson is ready to catch in games. Wakamatsu wants Moore to catch all of the pitchers in case Johnson, who had surgery on both hips, has a setback and can’t start the season.