Mariners Spring Training Update – Day 15

Player of the Game Carlos Peguero (2 home runs) gives high fives after the win.  (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Player of the Game Carlos Peguero (2 HR) gives high-fives after leading the Mariners to their fifth straight win.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013 / 33 Days ‘til Opening Night (April 1 at Oakland) / 40 Days ‘til Opening Night in Seattle (April 8 vs. Houston)

Sliding Practice:
Besides the normal stretch, loosen up and batting practice, the highlight of the morning workout was sliding practice. Manager Eric Wedge has been adamant about having his players slide directly into home plate (and all bases), rather than trying to bend around the bag. It was an all-out drill, with players getting their pants dirty and a few knees scraped.

Familiar Face, New Uniform:
Former Mariners coach Sammy Perlozzo, a coach for the Mariners from 1993-95 and 2008, stopped by the Mariners offices in his Team Italy uniform. A great baseball man, Perlozzo is etched in the Mariners history books after waving Ken Griffey Jr. around third base to score on Edgar Martinez’s The Double in Game #5 of the ALDS vs. the Yankees. He is currently a coach with the Team Italy squad that will compete in the World Baseball Classic. Italy played an exhibition game vs. players from Mariners Mini Camp today.

Former Mariners coach Sammy Perlozzo in his Team Italy uniform.

Former Mariners coach Sammy Perlozzo in his Team Italy uniform.

Game Recap:
Carlos Peguero
hit a pair of solo home runs to lead the Mariners to their fifth consecutive victory in a 5-1 win over the Indians. Peguero got the scoring started with an opposite-field line drive homer to left field in the third inning, and then hit a towering shot to right field in fourth inning. Raul Ibañez and Kendrys Morales each added a pair of hits. Two of the Mariners top pitching prospects, Danny Hultzen and Taijuan Walker, combined for 4.0 shutout innings. You can view a full box score and recap on Mariners.com and here are some video highlights posted by King 5 in Seattle.

Taijuan Walker threw 2.0 scoreless innings.  (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

Taijuan Walker threw 2.0 scoreless innings. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

The Longball:
The Mariners hit two more home runs today, or we should say, Carlos Peguero hit two home runs today. The Mariners entered today’s spring training games tied with the Indians (homerless today) for the Spring Training lead with 10 home runs. You can view both of Peguero’s home runs in the below video highlights via MLB.com.

Fire Alarm:
A foul ball hit by Julio Morban in the top of the eighth inning hit the roof on top of the press box, and somehow triggered an automated fire alarm, causing a five-minute delay [we later found out a small child accidently pulled the "shiny" alarm]. The alarm triggered a recording telling fans to leave the stadium, even though it was a false alarm. Might be the first fire alarm delay we have seen. The alarm also shut down the PA system for a bit, so the rest of the inning was played without a public address system.

Cremin Back Up and Running:
Mariners veteran producer/engineer Kevin Cremin was nearly decapitated by a foul ball Tuesday in Maryvale in the 9th inning, but luckily (or not so lucky), his computer got in the way. Cremin’s laptop screen was cracked and no longer usable. He got through today using a separate monitor and keyboard, and a new laptop is on the way. Here is the audio call by Rick Rizzs and Aaron Goldsmith when Kevin’s laptop bit the dust.

Laptop

Kevin Cremin’s laptop screen after being hit by the pictured ball.

Weather:
Game time temperature was 64° at first pitch in Goodyear, and climbed into the low 70’s as the day wore on.

Happy Birthday Carlos:
Infielder Carlos Triunfel celebrated his 23rd birthday today. It seems like yesterday when we met first Carlos as a 16-year-old at the beginning of spring training in 2007.

A Ride He’ll Never Forget:
Senior Baseball Columnist Scott Miller of CBSSportsline.com had a fun blog post on Mariners Special Assistant Ted Simmons that was posted today. Miller tells the story of when Simmons was just starting his baseball career and was hitchhiking home (not recommended of course) with his then girlfriend Maryanne (now his wife) to Detroit. A van pulled over to pick them up, with nothing in the back except a set of drums. The driver was none other than Bob Seger. Give the blog a read, you’ll enjoy it.

Aircraft Boneyard:
There are interesting aspects of each Cactus League stadium and the surrounding area. Goodyear is a relatively new stadium (debuted in 2009) and is the spring home of Ohio’s two Major League teams (Cleveland Indians & Cincinnati Reds). As you drive to the ballpark you pass by Phoenix-Goodyear Airport, which is an old Naval Air Station, and is currently a graveyard and storage area for older commercial aircraft. It is a pretty cool visual to see over 20 big plans right in the middle of the desert.

The airplane graveyard at the Phoenix-Goodyear Airport as viewed from the Press Box.

The airplane graveyard at the Phoenix-Goodyear Airport as viewed from the Press Box.

Lots of Autographs:
Prior to the game in Goodyear several Mariners stopped to greet fans and sign autographs. Players that spent time with fans (to name just a few) included: Brad Miller, Alex Liddi, Kyle Seager, Raul Ibañez, Michael Saunders, Dustin Ackley and Casper Wells.

Gentleman, Start Your Engines:
The Goodyear Ballpark is really close to Phoenix International Raceway, which will host this weekend’s NASCAR event. There was no truth to the fact that Mariners pitching coach Carl Willis (a huge NASCAR fan) was making only left-hand turns on the way to today’s game.

Tweet of the Day:

On Tap Tomorrow (Thursday, February 28):
The Mariners will play their third consecutive road game tomorrow, traveling to Old Town Scottsdale to face the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants. Right-hander Jon Garland is scheduled to start on the mound for Seattle vs. Giants right-hander Matt Cain. Felix Hernandez is also scheduled to throw Live Batting Practice in the morning before the team leaves for Scottsdale.

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