Healy progressing, needs to produce in return

Creating off-days for Nicasio beneficial to his long-term outlook

April 25th, 2018

CHICAGO -- Mariners first baseman has progressed enough with his timing at the plate that he is expected to rejoin his teammates at some point this weekend in Cleveland, manager Scott Servais said on Wednesday.
Healy, who has been sidelined with a right ankle injury, went 1-for-3 with a two-run single with Double-A Arkansas on Tuesday. Healy has gone 5-for-15 in four games with the Travelers and has homered and driven in six runs.
Servais said he watched video of Healy on Wednesday morning and believes he is ready to re-acclimate himself to Major League pitching. Servais said earlier this week that Healy would not return until he could make an impact on the Mariners' offense.
"Things have gone OK with him on the rehab assignment," Servais said before Wednesday's game against the White Sox. "He looks fine."
Healy was hitting .091 (2-for-22) when he sprained his ankle in a postgame workout earlier this month. Healy drove in three runs on April 7. The Mariners sent him to Arkansas to help provide him a chance to improve his timing.

The true test will come, however, once Servais inserts Healy back in the everyday lineup.
"He needs to come in and contribute -- he knows that," Servais said. "He was off to a slow start. Giving him the extra days of at-bats and playing time on the rehab assignment hopefully helps him, but facing Minor League pitching versus Cleveland pitching is a little bit different."
In sync
Right-handed reliever showed much better tempo in his one inning of work in Tuesday's 1-0 victory over the White Sox. Servais said Wednesday that Nicasio was getting down the mound better and displayed better tempo and delivery. Nicasio -- who had a strikeout in his appearance -- showcased more fastball velocity, which Servais was encouraged by, especially for the long-term.
Servais said a couple of days of not being called on benefited Nicasio, who has struck out nine hitters over 10 2/3 innings this season.
"He's never going to say, 'No, I need a day,' so sometimes you kind of have to create that day and put some other guys in some different spots," Servais said. "But he looked really good."
Roster moves
The Mariners announced Wednesday that left-handed relief pitcher  has been outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma. With the move, the 40-man roster is now at 38.
Alvarez, 29, was claimed off of waivers from the Cubs in March and went 0-0 in five appearances with Tacoma with a 2.84 ERA. Alvarez has struck out seven and walked six.
In 2017, Alvarez went 2-0 with a 2.76 ERA in 20 games with the Rangers and held opponents scoreless in 16 of the 20 appearances.