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Young infielders' errors part of growing pains

SEATTLE -- While Seattle's young players have been the key to an offensive resurgence, there have been some growing pains as well. In Tuesday night's 7-2 loss to Toronto, the infield -- whose oldest player apart from the catcher is 26-year-old first baseman Justin Smoak -- were credited with three errors, and were responsible for a fourth.

"These are all things they can learn from," acting manager Robby Thompson said. "Mental mistake by [second baseman] Nick Franklin, which caused the throw by [outfielder] Raul Ibanez. Just to clear that up, that's been talked about, because Raul was throwing the ball to second base, Nick had already vacated to do a double relay at third base, he should've stayed at second."

After the game, Ibanez spoke to Franklin about the miscommunication and Thompson said the second baseman understands why his decision wasn't optimal. At the time, Franklin was struggling at the plate, with an 0-for-27 hitting streak, something Thompson acknowledged might have affected his fielding. He snapped the slump with his first career triple in the first inning on Wednesday.

Still, Thompson isn't concerned with the result, because he trusts his players' approach.

"They're doing all the right things, their pregame work is good, they have good routines. But it's all going to be part of the in-play during those nine innings. They have to think ahead of times about the situation."

Seattle didn't make an error in Wednesday's 9-7 win over the Blue Jays.

Jacob Thorpe is an associate reporter for
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