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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 20, 2008 9:38 AM

Sights and Sounds: Morrow's bullpen session

Posted by Geoff Baker

A look at yesterday's late-afternoon bullpen session thrown by Brandon Morrow. Interesting to see the interplay between him and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre, even for something as routine as this. It amazes me how some folks think that coaches at the big league level are simply there to pick up towels for the players. Nope. It's the same as in Little League. The players are told things and they (for the most part) listen. Even the veterans (the smart ones) take in the advice they're given. Now, some pitchers, who've earned their living for years throwing a certain way, will be reluctant to take advice, especially from a new coach. It often takes time to build trust.

Also, there are certain things a player is expected to know once he reaches the big league level. But you never stop learning. I guess that's the lesson this morning.

To clear some things up from having read the previous comments thread: Sean Green is on this team. Actually, if Morrow isn't 100 percent good to go, Green becomes a very important late-inning fixture in the eighth. He already is being leaned on heavily.

Also, when I asked John McLaren about this yesterday, he told me that probably only one, if any, of the Arthur Rhodes, Chris Reitsma, Mark Lowe trio would be ready to start the season with the M's. Speaking of M's relievers, check out Seattle-based ESPN reporter Jim Caple in this video, catching knuckleballer R.A. Dickey.

Thanks to all of you who wrote in about today's story on Mariners pitching prospect Nick Hill, a 2nd lieutenant in the U.S. Army. What do you think about the story? I got an email from a U.S. Marine who had to pass up a Division 1 soccer scholarship offer to go to Iraq. Should pro athletes from the Army be allowed to pursue sports careers while amateur athletes, or pros and amateurs in other branches of the military, must first complete their full military obligations (often overseas in conflict zones)? Interesting discussion point. What do you think about it?

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