Archive for the ‘ Japan ’ Category

Mariners Place OF Mike Carp on 15-Day DL; Carlos Peguero Recalled

TOKYO, Japan. — Seattle Mariners Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Jack Zduriencik announced today the following roster moves:

  • OF Mike Carp placed on 15-day disabled list.
  • OF Carlos Peguero recalled from AAA Tacoma.

Carp, 25, was diagnosed with a sprained right shoulder. He suffered the injury diving for a Kurt Suzuki double in the fourth inning last night. Carp remained in the game and was examined after the game. Carp will be re-evaluated upon the Mariners return to Arizona.

Peguero, 25, accompanied the team to Japan as part of the 30-man roster but was optioned to AAA Tacoma March 27 (Tuesday) to get the Mariners to an Opening Day 28-man roster.

For more information is also available online at

– FA

Mariners Game Central (March 29)

The Mariners (0-0) play tonight in Japan vs. the Oakland Athletics at Tokyo Dome. Here is game information for tonight’s game vs. the A’s:

Opponent: vs. Oakland Athletics
Site: Tokyo Dome
Pitching Match-up: LHP Jason Vargas vs.  RHP Bartolo Colon
Time: 6:04 p.m. in Japan/2:04 a.m. in Seattle
Radio: The game will air live on ROOT SPORTS and on (subscription) and be broadcast on ESPN 710 Seattle.
Live Stats: Live pitch-by-pitch coverage will be provided on via the Gameday feature.
Game Information:  | Mariners Game Notes  | MLB Gameday |

Mariners vs. Oakland, Tokyo Dome, March 29

Mariners Win Season Opener 3-1 in 11 Innings

The Mariners pulled out an exciting 3-1 win in 11 innings over the Oakland A’s in the 2012 season opener against in Tokyo. Dustin Ackley was named the player of the game going 2-for-5 with a home run and 2 RBI. Ichiro Suzuki tied a Mariners Opening Day record with four hits (4-for-5, RBI) and set the all-time Mariners Opening Day hits record (17). Felix Hernandez was up to his usual self, allowing one run in 8.0 innings, striking out six and not walking a batter. How good has Felix been on Opening Day in his career, well, in five starts, he is 3-0 with a 1.59 ERA (7 ER, 39.2 IP). Felix recorded the no-decision, but was backed up by stellar relief pitching from Tom Wilhelmsen (W, 2.0 ShO IP, 2 K) and closer Brandon League (SV, 1.0 IP, 2 K).

Dustin Ackley hit a solo home run in the 4th inning to give the Mariners a 1-0 lead. (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

The Mariners are now 21-15 all-time in season openers, including a current club record 6-game Opening Day winning streak (longest active streak in the Majors). This was also just the fifth extra inning game on Opening Day, and the win improved the record to 4-1 in extra frames in the season opener.

Following the game, there were a lot of good quotes from the players as reported by beat writer Greg Johns:

Ichiro on Playing in front of his home crowd:
“More than the four hits, it was more being able to enjoy the atmosphere with the fans,” Ichiro said through interpreter Antony Suzuki in the cramped Tokyo Dome visitors’ clubhouse. “Being there with the same feelings, that was special to me. That’s what will stay in my heart.”

Tom Wilhelmsen on Ichiro’s performance:
“Welcome home, huh?” said reliever Tom Wilhelmsen, the winning pitcher with two shutout innings of relief. “What a great show for the fans and obviously for us and the team. It’s just amazing. Felix is the king of Seattle and Washington. But this is just something un-Godly. [Ichiro] was just amazing, and I’m happy he was able to get those four hits and put on the show he did.”

Dustin Ackley on his home run:
“The first thing I thought of when I got back to the dugout was that I was leading the Major Leagues in home runs,” Ackley said. “It might be the coolest thing I’ve ever done in my life. So to be a part of that and to be a part of this winning team and the game tonight in extra innings, it was awesome.”

Felix Hernandez on pitching in the atmosphere of the Tokyo Dome:
“It was a great win, and it was an honor to pitch here in Tokyo,” Hernandez said. “It’s been unbelievable to be here. Great fans and everything. Everyone worked together and it was a great win for us. And all the fans in the stadium, that was pretty good, man. That was awesome.”

And here are some photos from the Mariners Opening Day win over the A’s provided by the Associated Press:

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– JE

Mariners Opening Night in Japan Slideshow

Updated: 3 p.m. Seattle Time.

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Mariners Place OF Franklin Gutierrez & C Adam Moore on 15-Day DL

Both roster moves are retroactive to March 24.

TOKYO, Japan. — Seattle Mariners Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Jack Zduriencik announced today the following roster moves:

  • OF Franklin Gutierrez placed on 15-day disabled list (retro to March 24)
  • C Adam Moore placed on 15-day disabled list (retro to March 24).

These moves set the Mariners Opening Day 28-man roster.

Gutierrez, 29, was diagnosed with a partial tear of his right pectoral muscle by Mariners Medical Director Dr. Edward Khalfayan. Gutierrez suffered the injury on Tuesday, February 28, making a throw from the outfield during a fielding drill. Gutierrez is being treated non-surgically.

Moore, 27, blocked a ball in the game March 6 vs. the Cincinnati Reds. The ball struck Moore on the right wrist. Moore finished the game (and was 2-for-2 with a double and 2 RBI) and iced the wrist after the game. He arrived at the ballpark March 7 and determined pain remained in the wrist, and it inhibited his ability to swing.  An x-ray exam that day revealed a fracture in the third metacarpal in his right wrist.

Mariners All-Access from Japan

With Opening Day vs. the A’s less than 12 hours away in Japan (3:04 am PT), the excitement for the 2012 season is building. And ROOT Sports has you covered when it comes to coverage of the Mariners.

A special edition of Mariners All-Access airs tonight at 7 pm PT (and replays at 10:30 pm) with coverage of the Mariners trip to Japan. A special portion of the show features Manager Eric Wedge, infielder Alex Liddi and pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma visiting with Japanese youth baseball players in an area devastated by the March 2011 tsunami. There will also be interviews with Mariners players on their thoughts of being in Japan and opening the 2012 season against the A’s in the Tokyo Dome.

Alex Liddi and Eric Wedge give instruction to a group of Japanese youth in area devastated by the 2011 tsunami.

And for you night owls staying up for the season opener, set your alarm a little earlier for the debut of the Mariners All-Access Japan Show at 2:30 am (replays at 10:30 pm Wednesday night).

And just to keep you up to speed, here is how you can listen to (710 ESPN Seattle) and watch (ROOT Sports) the 2012 season opener against the Oakland A’s:

Radio Coverage (710 ESPN Seattle):

  • LIVE PREGAME SHOW: 2:00 am
  • LIVE GAME BROADCAST: first pitch at 3:04 am
  • GAME REPLAY: immediately after the live broadcast, the game will be replayed in its entirety
  • POSTGAME: after the replay, the Brock and Salk Show will serve as a de facto postgame show
  • Radio broadcast also available on for subscribers

TV Coverage (ROOT Sports):

  • LIVE GAME BROADCAST: air time 3:00 am, first pitch at 3:04 am
  • GAME REPLAY: 7:30 pm
  • Game also available on for subscribers
  • MLB Network will air the game on tape-delay at 6 am PT, and will re-air later in the day at 7 pm PT.  MLB Network will televise the ROOT Sports feed of both games, which will be available on MLB Network in the Athletics home television territory.  The games will be blacked out on MLB Network in the Mariners home television territory

ROOT Sports goes behind the scenes during the Mariners first two exhibition games in the Tokyo Dome.

– JE

Ishinomaki – Baseball Clinic (Slideshow)

For the A’s and the Mariners, the opportunity to be a part of the Japan Opening Series 2012 is a special honor. And while the focus of both teams is on Opening Night tomorrow, for Eric Wedge (and his wife, Kate), Hisashi Iwakuma, Hector Noesi and Alex Liddi today’s “off day” provided an opportunity to focus on what is really important.

The four, joined by A’s special assistant Phil Garner and three Oakland players, travelled to Ishinomaki to conduct a goodwill youth clinic, serve Tonjiro (a traditional Japanese pork stew) to youth players and visitors from a temporary housing center on site, and to present a check for $500,000 (which will be matched by corporate donations to total a 1-million dollar donation) on behalf of Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association.

A group of nearly 60 people (including the players, team staff, MLB staff and US media) left the hotel at 7:45 AM to make the long trip. A one-and-a-half hour bullet train ride delivered the group to Sendai Station, and a 90-minute bus ride brought everyone to Ishinomaki close to noon.

“First and foremost it was terrific to get to see the 100 kids enjoy themselves and, hopefully, learn a little at the clinic”, Wedge said. “For everything they have gone through over the last year, knowing we could bring a little joy to them and their families is really important.

“Equally important is both the donation to rebuild the baseball field that was destroyed in the aftermath of the Tsunami. The field serves as a cultural center for the town, kids and adults alike. And finally, I hope that our being there helped refocus some attention on all the work that still needs to be done as the people of Japan work to overcame the devastation of the earthquake and tsunami of 3-11-11.”

Wedge and the players were able to tour the city and see first hand the devastation caused by the tragic events of last year. They were also able to meet with the Mayor of Ishinomaki who explained the loss of life and property that the city still struggles to recover from.

As an example, nearly 20 schools were destroyed by the flood, and in one area near the coast, 70-percent of the housing was wiped out. Thousands still live in temporary shelters in town.

But, at least for a day, instead of focusing on what was lost, the children (and their parents) were able to focus on what was to come.

A new field. Skills taught to them by Major League Players and coaches, including a local hero, Hisashi Iwakuma, in a clinic sponsored by The Boeing Company. And the hope of a brighter future. 

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Mariners Complete Final Workout Before Opening Day

It was a low-key workout day for the Mariners on the last day before the start of the regular season.

The team bus left the hotel at noon and arrived at the Tokyo Dome around 12:30 for a 1:30 pm workout and soon the Mariners sent out a news release announcing the provisional roster for Opening Day in Japan.

The biggest news item of that release was Munenori Kawasaki being on the roster and the media obviously wanted to hear his thoughts about the honor.

Munenori Kawasaki talks to the media about being included on the Mariners 28-man Opening Day roster.

Some writers had assumed that he made the team yesterday after seeing an emotional Kawasaki in the clubhouse but it was made “official” this afternoon.

Robby Thompson, who filled in for Eric Wedge in the pre-workout news conference, said “he has done a lot of good things for us, he’s full of energy and has passion for the game. He’s a great teammate, all of us love the guy and he’s brought a lot of life to this club.”

Another guy who got good news was right-hander Erasmo Ramirez. After seeing him walk out of the Manager’s office last night with a big smile on his face, it was clear that he had received some good news.

Some members of the Mariners including Eric Wedge, Alex Liddi, Hector Noesi and Hisashi Iwakuma missed the workout and instead went to Ishinomaki Stadium where they held a baseball clinic. Check back later for a slide show from this appearance.

Mariners Manager Eric Wedge works with a young child at Ishinomaki Stadium.

Mariners vs. Yomiuri Giants (March 26)

If you havent read about Justin Smoak, Dustin Ackley and George Sherrill making a visit to Camp Zama and riding a Blackhawk, Greg Johns provides us with a recap: Fly, Fly Away. More pictures from the Blackhawk will be uploaded to

Having played a day game Sunday, it was the Mariners turn to play at night against the Yomiuri Giants. The biggest difference early on between yesterday and today was that the team was no longer in the same clubhouse they were in yesterday. Instead of coming down the stairs from the tunnel and going straight, there was a left turn, then a right, another left and finally a right to get into the clubhouse. The new clubhouse is unfortunately not much bigger than the clubhouse the team was in yesterday.

The team bus was a little late today so Eric Wedge‘s pre-game press conference was pushed back ten minutes while his team was taking the field for stretch.

During BP, Mike Carp was on a roll, launching ball after ball into the seats and he was joined by Jesus Montero who was hitting his home runs to right-center.

Michael Saunders gets his cuts in the cage.

As some of you may have already seen, Ichiro has a tendency to make catches behind his back during batting practice and today he did the same to the oohs and ahhs of the crowd. Basically, every time that a ball was hit to right field during BP there was higher than usual crowd noise in right field, all hoping to be the lucky fan that caught a ball thrown into the stands by Ichiro.

Former Mariner Phil Bradley has been here all week, making the rounds talking to Mariners front office staff, executives and players. Chuck Armstrong, John Ellis and Howard Lincoln  have all been regular down on the field for BP. Special Assistant to the GM Roger Hansen has also been a fixture down on the field and it is very clear to see how much he is respected by Japanese baseball. Roger spent a few seasons in Japan as the roving catching instructor for the Orix BlueWave and still has many friends in the Japanese game.

Roger Hansen, Taka Morimoto and Phil Bradley chat with a Giants team member.

Ichiro has obviously also been a popular target for meet-and-greets. Yesterday he met with a few Yomiuri Giants behind home plate and the night before, there were several players who were waiting for him to emerge from the clubhouse after the Hanshin game. It was fun to see as Ichiro had a big smile on his face when he realized who was saying hello. At one point, a Giants player who knew Ichiro brought out and introduced a young player to him and you could see the respect and excitement that this player had for number fifty-one.

Ichiro greets Yomiuri Giants players.

The assembled media on the field was thick and they were all corralled within barriers that prevented them from getting too close to the players and trying to get through the group makes you feel like you’re an amateur contortonist.

It was great to see a full stadium as the crowd poured in. Watching the highlights from the earlier game between the Athletics and the Tigers, it was clear that the game was not sold out. The crowd of 43,759 made for a great atmosphere and it was a great experience to hear the fans sing along to the National Anthem.

The Tokyo Dome crowd stands for the National Anthems.

As part of the pre-game ceremony (first pitch), it is curtomary for the leadoff hitter from the visiting team to step into the batters box and swing and a miss. Today, former Mariners pitcher Shigetoshi Hasegawa had the honor of taking the mound and fired a curve ball as Chone Figgins purposely took an exaggerated wild swing as a sign of respect for the right-hander. Chone and Shiggy know each other well from their days together with the Angels.

Chone Figgins chats with Phil Bradley and Shigetoshi Hasegawa.

The post-game news conference included Dustin Ackley and Eric Wedge. Ackley went first and answered questions about Opening Day, batting second this year instead of third and his general thoughts on the game. After a few minutes, Wedge emerged and took his turn on the stage.

Tomorrow, Eric Wedge and a few players will take a bullet train up to Ishinomaki Stadium where they will participate in a clinic for youths. Check later today for a recap of the event.

Mariners vs. Yomiuri Giants, March 26

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