Mariners work around rainy weather
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Rainy weather arrived Wednesday in the Phoenix area, sending the Mariners under cover to get their work in just two days before their Cactus League opener.
Fifteen pitchers threw bullpen sessions in the covered hitting cages at the club's Peoria Sports Complex, with hitters standing at the plate without swinging.
The normal fielding drills and a planned baserunning session was canceled, but manager Eric Wedge said the key thing was getting work in for the pitchers with such little preparation time this season before games begin due to the impending World Baseball Classic.
"All things considered, we got everything done," Wedge said. "We weren't able to do [the baserunning drills], but we'll double up on that tomorrow. But most importantly we needed to get the pitchers throwing off the mound and have the position players track [pitches]. So we got everything we needed for the most part."
Hector Noesi, who will start Friday's charity game against the Padres, was one of the pitchers throwing. Blake Beavan, who'll start Saturday, also got his work in. Also in the Wednesday group were veterans Jeremy Bonderman and Jon Garland, who hadn't thrown live batting practice with the other pitchers earlier in the week.
The other half of the pitching staff will throw Thursday, as scheduled, with Joe Saunders and Hisashi Iwakuma getting their first live batting practice sessions of the spring, and the rest of the staff throwing live for a second time.
Wedge said it was important to get Bonderman and Garland throwing with hitters in the box for the first time, even if nobody was swinging.
"We wanted to make sure they had something to work off of, both right-handers and left-handers," he said. "And they both threw the ball well today. They both have been throwing the ball well here early on. Because we do need to take a good look at them and they are here competing for jobs, it was important to get them out there today."