OAKLAND, Calif. – The Seattle Mariners recalled catcher Miguel Olivo from Triple-A Tacoma on Tuesday and optioned catcher Rene Rivera to Double-A San Antonio.
Olivo was available for the game at Oakland and will be the backup to starter Pat Borders. Manager Mike Hargrove expects the 26-year-old Olivo, the team’s opening-day catcher, to play once or twice every four or five days.
Olivo worked before the game with minor league catching coordinator Roger Hansen, who will remain with the team through this weekend’s series against the Texas Rangers at Safeco Field.
In 23 games at Tacoma, Olivo’s batting average was .244 with three home runs, 21 runs batted in and 13 runs. He also had eight stolen bases.
Seattle wants Rivera to focus on his defense and the team believes it will benefit him to play every day in the minors.
Rivera batted .364 with one home run and five RBIs in his second stint with the Mariners this season.
“The reason we sent Rene out was to work on his defensive abilities and separate his hitting from his catching,” Hargrove said.
“The more his hitting woes went on, it affected him behind the plate,” Hargrove said. “His focus would wander. … He’d done everything we asked and more. He did enough to show us he can be a No. 1 guy. To achieve that as quickly as possible, he needs to play every day.”
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