Mariners notebook for Sunday June 7


Opponent: Minnesota Twins

When: 1:10 p.m.

Where: Safeco Field


Radio: ESPN 710 AM

Probable starting pitchers: Seattle left-hander Erik Bedard (4-2, 2.37 earned run average) vs. right-hander Kevin Slowey (8-1, 3.97).


The Mariners had every intention of bringing left-hander Ryan Rowland-Smith off the disabled list to start Thursday night’s game at Baltimore.

Then, in what was supposed to be his last rehab start for Class AAA Tacoma, Rowland-Smith produced what he called the worst outing of his professional career Friday night. He gave up 12 runs and 14 hits in 42/3 innings of what became a 21-5 loss to Reno.

Manager Don Wakamatsu said late Saturday afternoon that the Mariners have changed their plan, that Rowland-Smith would rejoin the Rainiers and remain on a five-day schedule with them. Left-hander Garrett Olson, who has started three games this season, probably will start Thursday at Baltimore.

Rowland-Smith, on the DL since April 11 because of triceps tendinitis, did push his pitch count close to the target of 100 — he threw 98 — but the Mariners must make sure he’s ready to face big-league competition again.

“We accomplished one thing, we got him to the pitch count we were talking about,” Wakamatsu said. “But going into a place like Baltimore with that lineup, is he ready to pitch in that situation?”

Rowland-Smith, who met Saturday morning with Wakamatsu and pitching coach Rick Adair, made it clear he didn’t agree with the decision.

“He feels like he’s ready to pitch up here,” Wakamatsu said. “You want to hear that from anybody.”

Betancourt remains on bench

When shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt didn’t start, Wakamatsu said his reason was more connected with the need to get Ronny Cedeno playing time.

Saturday, when Betancourt didn’t play again, it was clear the Cedeno factor wasn’t the only one. Betancourt, who has irked the team in past seasons for his lack of preparation and work ethic, apparently hasn’t changed appreciably.

“It has nothing to do with (anything) on the field,” Wakamatsu said. “It has to do with preparation.”

The Mariners have stressed to all players since the beginning of spring training the importance of physical and mental preparation needed to improve. Betancourt has been a season-long frustration. He is batting .249 with two home runs and 17 RBI, but also has a team-high nine errors.


One game isn’t enough for the Mariners to give up on 24-year-old outfielder Wladimir Balentien, although they can’t afford another like Friday’s, when he misplayed two fly balls in left field that allowed the Twins to score the winning run.

“We have to prove that he can play here,” Wakamatsu said. “A lot of that is not so much the errors, but how much a guy is going to improve and work on those things so that doesn’t happen again.

“It’s unfortunate. He wants to catch that ball as much as anybody. Whether it’s mental, whether it’s physical or whether it’s preparation, those are the things we have to figure out. We have to know if he can play here or not. But as we go forward, those mistakes can’t be made.”

Balentien showed during spring training and early this season that he’s athletic enough to handle the vast left field at Safeco Field.

“This is a guy who played center field (in the minor leagues),” Wakamatsu said. “Watching him in spring training, his actions were good. It’s not like all of a sudden he got bad, but it’s highlighted more with a game like (Friday’s).”


Not only was catcher Rob Johnson unavailable for Saturday’s game, he spent the day wearing a boot on his tender left foot. He fouled a ball off the foot Friday, and also absorbed a hard hit in a home-plate collision with the Twins’ Matt Tolbert. Johnson isn’t hurt badly enough to warrant time on the disabled list, although the Mariners would like to avoid using him for as many as five days. Guillermo Quiroz would get the starts. … Who’s the emergency third catcher? That would be Mike Sweeney, although he has suffered back problems this season. The other choice would be Wladimir Balentien. … Former Mariner Edgar Martinez threw out the ceremonial first pitch — to Ken Griffey Jr. — as the Mariners honored Latin American baseball on Saturday. … Reliever Roy Corcoran (neck stiffness) began his minor league rehab Saturday night by pitching an inning for Class AAA Tacoma at Las Vegas. … Reliever Shawn Kelley (oblique strain) will travel with the team to Baltimore and Colorado this week and continue his throwing program. He’s still about two weeks away from pitching off a mound. … Both catcher Kenji Johjima (broken big toe) and Carlos Silva (shoulder inflammation) will stay behind and continue their recovery work in Seattle.

Talk to us

More in Sports

Glacier Peak took on Cascade in football at Everett Memorial Stadium on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019 in Everett, Wash. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Prep football preview: Storylines, teams, players, games to watch

Everything you need to know about Snohomish County high school football during this shortened season.

Granite Falls' Riley Hoople makes a reception with Sultan's Derek Feltner defending Friday night in Sultan on February 26, 2021 (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
This week’s prep football schedule, picks and streaming links

Click on the game to watch your favorite team in action Friday night and all day Saturday.

Volleyball players in Wesco took the court for competition this week for the first time in the over 15 months. (Herald file photos)
Prep volleyball season preview

Local teams, players and games to watch this season.

Everett Community College’s Trojan mascot (left) poses with Everett Silvertips mascot, Lincoln. (Provided photo)
Silvertips, EvCC announce partnership to house players

Everett’s billeting program is on hold to respect health and safety protocols forced by the pandemic.

Gonzaga forward Corey Kispert (24), looks to drive against Pacific forward Jeremiah Bailey (13), during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Stockton, Calif., Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021. Gonzaga won 76-58. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Edmonds native Kispert named WCC player of the year

Former local hoops stars Paisley Johnson Harding and Jordyn Edwards also received All-WCC honors.

Everett High School graduate Jayden White (right), a University of Washington freshman, poses next to throws coach Andrew Ninow after breaking the Huskies' school record in the weight throw last Friday. (Photo by Jamie Mitchell)
Community sports roundup: Everett H.S. grad breaks UW record

Jayden White broke UW’s weight throw record, highlighting a success-filled week for local athletes.

High School football teams across Snohomish County are closing in on their first game in over a year. (Herald file photos)
Prep football: Key games and the area’s complete schedule

The first H.S. football game in the county in over a year is set to take place this coming Friday.

A Marysville Pilchuck football player sports a spear on his helmet as the Tomahawks took on Snohomish in the Wesco 3A Championship Friday evening at Quil Ceda Stadium on November 1, 2019. School district leaders may soon need to consider dropping Marysville Pilchuck High School’s mascot, the Tomahawks. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Should Marysville Pilchuck High drop the name ‘Tomahawks’?

A state bill would ban Native American mascots and symbols from schools — unless there is tribal permission.

Dawn Trudeau (Seattle Storm)
13 years ago this month, they bought the Seattle Storm

Dawn Trudeau and her partners didn’t foresee the challenges — or the championships — that were in store.

FILE - Washington's Asa Turner (20) celebrates with Kamren Fabiculanan (31) after Turner intercepted a pass in the final minute of an NCAA college football game against Oregon State in Seattle, in this Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020, file photo. Washington won 27-21. Washington has pulled out of the Pac-12 football championship game due to COVID-19 issues in the Huskies program, and Oregon will now play No. 13 USC for the conference title on Friday instead.  Washington (3-1) announced Monday, Dec. 14, 2020, it is withdrawing from the championship game after determining the Huskies did not have at least 53 scholarship players available and did not meet the minimum number of scholarship athletes at specific positions.(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Washington’s 2021 football schedule released

Huskies head coach Jimmy Lake is hopeful that fans will be allowed as soon as the spring game May 1.

Washington State running back Deon McIntosh (3) celebrates after scoring against Utah during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Washington State’s 2021 football schedule released

The Cougars open the season with three straight home games and six of their first eight in Pullman.

Seattle Mariners' Dylan Moore, right, is congratulated by teammate Kyle Lewis after hitting a solo home run off of Texas Rangers starting pitcher Kolby Allard during the third inning of a baseball game, Monday, Sept. 7, 2020, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)
Servais on Dylan Moore: ‘He’s a ball player’

Mariners’ super-utility player looks to build on a breakout season.