Brad Miller and Dustin Ackley are both in the line-up tonight despite a lefty on the mound. Miller is starting at shortstop. He arrived at Safeco early excited and ready to go.
The official roster move was Miller called up, Carlos Triunfel being sent to Triple A Tacoma (he’ll be in the line-up tonight at Cheney Stadium) while third baseman Alex Liddi was designated for assignment.
Liddi was hitting .263 with 11 homers and 43 RBI for the Rainiers. He has tremendous power. But the 86 strikeouts in 240 at-bats were glaring. The Mariners now have 10 days to either trade, release or outright Liddi.
Mariners manager Eric Wedge met with Miller and Brendan Ryan to discuss their roles. Wedge wouldn’t necessarily commit to Miller being the every day shortstop, saying they would play off of him, similar to how they determine Mike Zunino’s playing time.
Wedge said Ryan took the news like a professional. But it’s clear he isn’t pleased to lose his starting job. Still, Ryan was out with Miller talking and working and offering advice during batting practice.
Ackley will make his first start in center field since being called up. Wedge is curious to see how he handles it. They really only have the reports to off of.
“We’ll see how it plays out, I’ve never seen him out there,” Wedge said. “It’s a good opportunity to get him out there and watch him play.”
Obviously, the addition of Miller and Ackley is going to force Wedge to make some playing time decisions. Players like Michael Saunders, Endy Chavez, Jason Bay and Ryan could see less playing time.
“If you want to play more, do better,” Wedge said. “It’s simple as that. I’m a very patient man and a very patient baseball person. But there’s always a point in time where you have to give someone else an opportunity. There’s always going to be somebody coming. We only have so many spots to play and we are going to handle this as best as we feel.”