OAKLAND, Calif. – Seattle Mariners second baseman Jack Wilson was in Saturday’s lineup and feeling fine after both his ankles took the brunt of a takeout slide by David DeJesus at second during an attempted double play Friday night.
Wilson said just about any second baseman would have been hit on a play like that and his adjusting to a new position had nothing to do with it. He did say that he’d only been hit two or three times by takeout slides during his entire career as a shortstop.
“It’s easier there because they’re coming at you from the front,” he said. “When you’re at second base, they’re coming at your blind spot when you’re making the pivot. Sometimes you can get out of the way, sometimes you can’t. It’s something I’m just going to have to get used to.”
Justin Smoak has a 12-game hitting streak carrying over from last year after his fourth-inning single Saturday. Smoak has had hits off left-handers in consecutive games to start the season after posting just a .271 on-base percentage batting from the right side last season. “I think the big thing was just getting to a point where I felt comfortable hitting from the right side,” Smoak said before the game. “I started to feel that way in spring training towards the end, so I was just hoping to keep doing it now.” … After four strikeouts Friday night, Ryan Langerhans was replaced in center field by Michael Saunders at the start of Saturday’s game. … Ichiro Suzuki arrived pregame wearing a long-sleeved pink shirt with charcoal gray horizontal stripes, as well as a green leather belt over his designer jeans. Noted Mariners fashion aficionado Jack Cust promptly walked up to Ichiro and took an uninvited feel of the fabric. “Look at that shirt!” Cust exclaimed. “So soft.” … Mariners manager Eric Wedge said he has no immediate plans to hold Sunday morning batting practice after Saturday night games. Wedge feels that, for now, the team has gotten enough work in and could use the extra rest.