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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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April 15, 2008 1:50 PM

Tuesday tidbits, Bedard talks (briefly)

Posted by Larry Stone

It's kind of a sleepy afternoon here at Safeco Field. I wouldn't be surprised if the crowd is one of the smallest in Safeco history, considering the weather, the 3:40 p.m. start time, the fact that it's a school night, and the reality that KC is not the greatest draw in the world (even though I think they're going to be much better than I ever expected, especially if Greinke has truly arrived). It sure looked like it yesterday. Greinke-Meche-Bannister ain't a bad top 3, and their closer, Soria, is very good as well. Billy Butler looks like a stud, and so does Alex Gordon. Finally, the Royals have a future. But I don't think they have enough offense to compete for the division title this year. I can see a .500 record as a nice stepping stone.

Now, on to the Mariners. Bedard played catch and reported that he didn't feel anything in his hip. That's an encouraging sign. But the Mariners are waiting until he throws a bullpen session to decide when his next start will be. That bullpen will probably come in the next couple of days, when the team is in Oakland, McLaren said. The upshot is that knuckleballer R.A. Dickey will almost certainly start Friday, the first game of a three-game series in Anaheim against the Angels.

"I will talk it over with Mel, but it looks like that is the way we are going to lean,'' McLaren said.

I, for one, am eager to see how Dickey will do in a start. The way he pitched in spring, the way he pitched in Tacoma, and the way he pitched Monday leads me to think that they might have quite a find here. That will be a good showcase for him.

But obviously, for the sake of this season, the Mariners need a healthy Bedard. I keep hearing and reading ominous speculation that this injury is worse than anyone suspects, but it sounds like he's getting better to me. I'd love to talk to Bedard about it, but he has been zealously avoiding the media
ever since his hip started hurting again. I have a feeling we won't be getting many insights from him, but I hope he will eventually tell us how he's feeling.

UPDATE, 2:15 p.m.: I just want down to the clubhouse after batting practice ended, and Bedard very pleasantly, albeit briefly, talked to three reporters.

He said that he feels better each day. He said that they're going "day by day" on his regimen. "I can't say if I'm going to throw a bullpen Friday or Saturday. We'll go day by day and see how it goes."

Asked if he was encouraged by the progress of his injury, he said, "It's always encouraging when it's getting better."

Asked if he was concerned that this injury was going to drag on, he said, "We'll see after my next start if it hurts still. Then maybe it will be something that drags on.''

And if that's the case, "I think rest is probably the only thing" that will help, he said.

Comparing how it feels now to how his hip felt in Baltimore last week when he was scratched the first time, he said, "I think it's better."

So there it is, straight from Bedard's mouth.

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Posted by Cougfan Dave

2:13 PM, Apr 15, 2008

I for one, am tired of Bedard's treatment of the media, and I am no media apologist.

Who does he think he is, Manny Ramirez?

I don't care if he's truly just "shy," and he's not the first guy to act this way, it's just a net negative. If he can't communicate to the public, how can we ever connect with and support him?

The part about him turning and hustling away from reporters today is really ridiculous.

He'll never find an easier media market to live & work in than Seattle, he just needs to get over himself.

Posted by oregongal

2:18 PM, Apr 15, 2008

KC was one of my favorite teams back in their glory days. Glad to see they're making progress. Especially since they aren't in the AL West.

Anyone still up to start the RADicals? I'm in.

Posted by Stu

2:22 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Mariners management probably doesn't wanting him talking to the media. It might get out that Bedard's another Mariner's free agent signing disaster.

Posted by joe

2:22 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Is Buddy Biancalana starting for KC @ SS?

Posted by Coop

2:43 PM, Apr 15, 2008

I know it is not Freddit Patek!

Posted by oregongal

2:43 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Thanks, Larry. A healthy Bedard.......d doesn't guarantee success, but un unhealthy one pretty much guarantees failure.

Posted by ethan

3:01 PM, Apr 15, 2008

so is Bedard hurt or injured?? and as any freshman sports coach can tell can play hurt. you cant play injured.

Bedard seems like one of those sick, lame and lazy guys.

Posted by Merrill

3:07 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Me, too, Oregongal...

Playing hurt is one of the best ways to get injured.

That said, I bet if it was August or September he'd be pitching. They said taht about last year, too--that had the O's been in contention, he could have pitched at least the last couple weeks of the season.

Posted by Nat

3:08 PM, Apr 15, 2008

CougfanDave: regarding Bedard's penchant for brief Q & A with the media: been there, done that, old news. Honestly, there must be more original topics of discussion you can come up with!

Geoff: I am interested to see Dickey pitch on Friday too. I think DiNardo is ptching for Oakland. Of course anybody who saw the M's play the A's in the first week of July last year (not 100% sure of the dates) will forever remember the M's victorious series against the A's just after Grover took off. And then there was Blanton shoving Ichiro, Ellison confronting Blanton, and the two dugouts rushing out there, whcih was quite exciting, an event that helped the M's begin to cohere as a team, I believe. The start of their run, as I recall.

But I do think the M's have a more difficult time mentally getting going against teams in which there is no real stake. It's just human nature, IMO. And yet every game counts, so they need to play tough. Go M's!

Posted by baltimore is lol

3:10 PM, Apr 15, 2008

bedard is going to let you down time and time agian. he is not a very tough guy. he only cares about himself, not the team. trust me I know. I think the best thing to do at this point is to fire your front enjoy bedard and I will enjoy jones the orioles new center feilder for the next 10 during the trade talks seattle came across so smug. well you got what you deserved. lol

Posted by Choska

3:14 PM, Apr 15, 2008

I guess you can only report what the guy says, but do you think he was telling you the truth?

Maybe I'm just cynical, but Bavasi's track record indicated that he has the reverse-Midas touch. I find it hard to believe that Bedard is going to reverse Bavasi's long established track record of getting burned on every trade he has ever made.

Let's see Bedard make everyone of his starts for the rest of the year and pitch 200 innings before we believe anything he says about "getting healthy."

Posted by baltimore is lol

3:24 PM, Apr 15, 2008

im sorry I really am. 200 innings are you on crack. bedard will show he cant be counted on. just give it time. he will be hurt every other suposed start. hip what the hell , a hip. lol how much are you paying him. I was going to rub it in , but now I just feel sorry for the fans of seattle. good luck this year .

Posted by Ben

3:24 PM, Apr 15, 2008

So say RA Dickey excels with a start - maybe is even somewhat dominant as a starter - what do we do about our rotation? Would it possibly push Washburn or Batista to the pen in a long relief role?

Batista has not looked too fantastic thus far (yes it's early - i suppose that is now the catch phrase of every post). He did similar things last year - high WHIP - letting people on, but last year he got out of those jams more often than not. This year those runs seem to be coming in more.

Anyway, if Dickey does well - would he get consideration as a 5th starter?

Posted by Bob

4:04 PM, Apr 15, 2008

The Ms need a spark, something like Nat's post about last year. Guillen's loss is worse in the attitude he took with him more than the RBIs.

I remember the first time the Bulls won the NBA title with Jordan and Pippen, they were beat handily the first playoff game against the Lakers. But it was not because the Lakers were the better team, the Bulls just played below their capabilities that first game.

The Ms remind me of that these first couple of weeks. Injuries haven't helped. Having Dickey and Rhodes may help, in two guys that have had to work like heck to get to where they are now. A lot of heart.

A spark of any sort, the best closer in the business back healthy, and the Ms could take off. They need to prove they are a good team, as all good teams do.

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