Results tagged ‘ Jeff Datz ’

Hot Stove League Returns Tonight

Hot Stove League

The Hot Stove League Radio Show returns tonight from 7-9 p.m. on 710 ESPN Seattle. Fans across the country can also listen live online via

The 2-hour long show will be hosted by Rick Rizzs, Shannon Drayer and Matt Pitman. Scheduled guests include third baseman Kyle Seager, relief pitcher Tom Wilhelmsen, third base coach Jeff Datz, TV announcer Dave Sims and Seattle Times National Baseball Writer Larry Stone.

Datz Finally Has His Words

It took Mariners third base coach Jeff Datz eight minor leagues seasons to get his Major League call-up with the Detroit Tigers late in the 1989 season. After over 450 minor league games, he finally got his chance, as a defensive replacement at catcher on Sept. 5, 1989 vs. the Kansas City Royals.

After all those long bus rides in the minors, he finally stepped to the plate as a big leaguer, and was facing Royals closer Jeff Montgomery with one out and a runner on first base in the bottom of the 8th inning at historic Tiger Stadium. With all of his family in the stands, he  was ready to get that first hit, but instead Montgomery hit him on the very first pitch.

“Can you believe that, first time I step to the plate, first pitch I saw, and I get hit,” recalled Datz. “Not exactly how you draw it up, but I got on base.”

Today, prior to the Mariners-Royals game in Kansas City, Datz finally got the chance to speak to Montgomery about the ill-fated pitch. Montgomery serves as an analyst for the Kansas City Royals TV broadcasts, and was on the field prior to today’s game and chatted with Datz.

“I asked him why he was so worried about facing me in that at-bat,” laughed Datz. “Believe it or not, that was the first time I’ve had a chance to talk to him about it. I doubt he even remembered, but it was fun to talk to him.”

Datz had a short Major League career appearing in 7 games for the Tigers in 1989, but has gone on to a long coaching career in the Majors with the Cleveland Indians and Mariners.

Mariners Third Base Coach Jeff Datz

– JE

Hot Stove League and Mariner Mondays

Mariners pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in Peoria, AZ this weekend, and what better way to get ready for the baseball season than with the Hot Stove League on the radio and Mariners Mondays on ROOT Sports.

The Hot Stove League show will be hosted by Rick Rizzs, Shannon Drayer and Matt Pitman. Fans can listen locally in the Puget Sound region on 710 ESPN Seattle and over the Internet on Guests for the show are scheduled to include:

Kyle Seager will be a guest on tonight's Hot Stove League Radio Show. (Getty Images)

And here is your Mariners Monday teaser that will air tonight on ROOT SPORTS (7:30pm PST) and feature the games of May 27 and May 28 vs. the New York Yankees.

Anytime you can beat the Yankees is a good day. When you do it in back-to-back games, even better.

Let’s set the scene – May 27, the Mariners are a game under .500 and preparing to open a big homestand with a three-game set against the Yankees. It’s a Friday night, and there’s always a buzz in Safeco Field when the Yankees come to town. When it was over, the Mariners had overcome a three-run deficit, Franklin Gutierrez had made another of his highlight-reel catches, and the Mariners bullpen held off the always powerful Yankees offense.

Rookie pitcher Michael Pineda got the start – probably the biggest start of his young career (after his Major League debut). But he struggled through 5.0 innings. He gave up just three hits and struck out five, but he didn’t have command of his fastball and walked five. The Mariners bullpen (David Pauley, Jamey Wright and Brandon League) combined for four scoreless innings. Pauley got the win and League notched his 13th save.

Look for highlights tonight of Franklin Gutierrez’s stunning catch of Nick Swisher’s deep drive to right center in the fourth inning.

The next night, Felix Hernandez took the mound. He pitched well and looked to be in line for a win, until the Yankees tied it at 4-4 in the 7th after a misjudged fly ball to right turned a Curtis Granderson out into a triple, scoring Derek Jeter from second.

The game stayed tied into the 12th inning (kudos again to the Mariners bullpen), when Mariano Rivera strode in for career appearance 1,001. Game over, right? Not so fast.

Rivera got a quick out on a broken bat grounder. Then Justin Smoak blooped a single to left, and Jack Cust dropped a double just inside the left field line, sending Smoak to third. Luis Rodriguez pinch ran for Smoak, Guti was intentionally walked to load the bases, and Adam Kennedy stepped in. On an 0-1 pitch, Kennedy put one into center field, just in front of Granderson, to score Rodriquez, who was greeted at home with a good beating by his teammates.

Pauley, who worked two innings of relief, got the win, his second in a row. The Mariners 5-4 win was the first loss Rivera had suffered since September 11, 2010.

The game was notable for another reason—four fans, including a streaker, ran onto the field late in the game. All were “escorted” off the field and spent part of their Memorial Day weekend as guests of King County.

– RH