Before the Seattle Mariners played their 20th game of the season today, manager Eric Wedge was asked about his veteran players – especially Chone Figgins and Miguel Olivo – and was surprisingly frank in his response.
“I like Dustin Ackley in the leadoff spot, that’s why you saw him there in spring training,” Wedge said. “Maybe that’s where he ends up. We’re still giving Figgins an opportunity, but he has to do it, simple as that.
“If he does it, we keep him there. If not, we don’t. It’s a balancing act with the kids and giving veterans space. Space for the veterans in not endless.”
“You see him start to get going a little bit. That’s a powerful bat,” Wedge said. “We don’t have a lot of that. You start to see that impact coming. That’s why you want to give them some time.
“You gotta have veteran presence. It’s enough on the kids already, they have to count on themselves. If we don’t have that veteran presence, it takes them longer to get there, I know that for a fact,” Wedge said.
“They take on too much themselves. We’re all human, these guys aren’t robots. They have hearts, brains and something else, too.”