Seattle MarinersManager: Lloyd McClendon
Stadium: Safeco Field
2008 Record: 61-101 (4th in AL West)
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HITTER TO WATCH:
Michael Saunders is the Mariners' best upper-level hitting prospect, making hard contact with average or better power but fighting a swing that tends to get too long.
PITCHER TO WATCH:
Josh Fields signed in time to pitch in big league camp and should spend much if not most of 2008 throwing bullets in Seattle's 'pen.
-- Keith Law, Scouts Inc.
Will Felix Hernandez emerge as the ace of the American League? Will Yuniesky Betancourt rank among the top shortstops? Register your vote.
Just 25, Jose Lopez still has room to build on a season in which he hit 17 homers and just missed batting .300. We haven't seen his best season yet. Honorable mention to Wladimir Balentien's power bat if he gets some extended playing time.
It's a nice nostalgia trip, and Ken Griffey Jr. might have some modest value if they just DH him against right-handed pitching. Unfortunately, he's going to see a bit more time than that, which will depress his batting average, and play some outfield, which likely will cause him to get hurt again.
-- Jason Grey
Erik Bedard never really got it going in 2008 after experiencing a variety of ailments, but ultimately it was his shoulder that ended his season prematurely. He underwent arthroscopic surgery to address a cyst and shape the labrum but did not require major reconstruction. So far the spring has been relatively uneventful for Bedard, minus a few missed days for a sore gluteus maximus (yep, buttock muscles). He claims all is well heading into the start of the season, but a note of caution is in order. Bedard has suffered a number of soft-tissue injuries in his career, including an ulnar collateral ligament injury that required Tommy John surgery before he joined the majors. With oblique, hip, back and shoulder problems all surfacing within the last two years, the Mariners may not be out of the woods.
-- Stephania Bell
PRESEASON POWER RANKINGS
No. 27 overall
No. 28 overall
No. 29 overall
No. 15 overall
No. 21 overall