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Geoff Baker covers the Mariners for The Seattle Times. He provides daily coverage of the team throughout spring training, and during the season.

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March 17, 2008 5:06 PM

Over and out

Posted by Larry Stone

A couple of final thoughts from today, and then Im going to sign off. My 8-year-old son, Jordan, is here with me in Peoria to watch some baseball, along with my brother-in-law, Robert. They have plans for tonight that don't include blogging.

--Jim Riggleman, who managed the Peoria game for the Mariners, called it a "typical Arizona game -- light air, hard ground. It's hard for pitchers to even get their work in." The Mariners gave up -- yikes -- 25 hits in a 17-3 loss to Milwaukee. Carlos Silva, as already discussed, got lit up, but so did Sean White and Jon Huber.

--But, on the other hand, the Mariners nearly pitched a shutout in Surprise, about five miles up the road. Same Arizona, same air, same ground, last time I checked. The Mariners took a 5-0 shutout into the ninth before Erik O'Flaherty gave up a couple of runs. The M's won 5-2 over the Rangers. The pitching stars were Cha Seung Baek (four shutout innings, one hit) and R.A. Dickey (three shutout innings, three hits). It looks more and more like Dickey, a Rule 5 guy, is going to make this team. And Baek, with a 0.82 ERA, is making a pretty good case for himself.

--I'm a big proponent of overlooking Arizona performances, but, man, Ichiro really looked bad today. He struck out three times, grounded out and popped out. Now he's hitting .105. Put him down for .332 this year -- but it would be nice if he started hitting with authority.

--That said, the Mariners could be excused for dragging. They've been going non-step since mid-February, which is why the entire team is welcoming Tuesday's day off - their only scheduled off day of the spring.

"I think you will see a little more energized ballclub as opposed to what saw today on Wednesday when we come back,'' Riggleman said.

--Thanks for your limericks. I'll try to come up with a couple more.

--I've been impressed with Matt Tuiasosopo, who had a couple of solid hits. He's still raw, but he just looks like a ballplayer. I see a bright future for him.

--I still enjoy hearing the name "Tony Gwynn" announced over the P.A. It's Gwynn Jr., and he looks like he has a pretty good stick, too.

--Speaking of offspring, the Brewers put a guy named Michael Brantley into left field late in the g ame, and he had one of their 25 hits. He's the son of former Mariners outfielder Mickey Brantley.

--Good news on reliever Brandon Morrow. He threw in the pen and felt great. MOrrow has been bothered by a sore arm, but the Mariners don't think it's serioius.

Adios, for now. The family beckons.


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