Blake Beavan, one of four candidates for the final two spots in Seattle’s rotation, didn’t exactly make a compelling case for himself Saturday in Peoria, AZ., allowing nine runs (eight earned) on 16 hits in 5.1 innings in a 10-5 Cactus League loss to the Cleveland Indians.
Cleveland minor leaguers Jose Ramirez and Tyler Naquin whacked back-to-back doubles in a five-run sixth inning as Cleveland overtook the Mariners for the victory.
Raul Ibanez belted his fourth homer of the spring and Justin Smoak had a pair of doubles as the Mariners bounced back against Indians starter Scott Kazmir, vying for a No. 5 starter role with the Indians. Kazmir got the victory after allowing five earned runs on 13 hits.
After the Indians had rallied from a two-run deficit to take the lead on back-to-back homers by Cord Phelps and Jason Giambi in the third, the Mariners took the lead back in the fifth on Ibanez’s two-run shot and an RBI double by minor leaguer Michael Dowd.
The Mariners scored two runs in the first after leading off the game with four straight hits, capped by Smoak’s first double, but Kazmir settled in after that, eventually throwing 85 pitches, 60 for strikes.
Beaven threw 100 mostly futile pitches in his 5.1 innings of work.
Joe Saunders will meet his former team when the Mariners travel to Salt River Fields to meet the Diamondbacks in a 1:10 p.m. PT game Sunday. With one week remaining in spring training, one player to keep an eye on is center fielder Franklin Gutierrez, who hasn’t played in the field in nearly a week. Gutierrez, suffering a variety of ills, played in only 40 games last season.
NOTES: Catcher Jesus Montero was struck on the side of the head by a bat in the second inning of the Mariners’ game Saturday and was carted off the field. Montero, with a towel on the right side of his head, gave a thumbs-up to the crowd as he sat on the cart with training staff attending to him on the way back to the team’s clubhouse. General Manager Jack Zduriencik said afterward that Montero did not sustain a concussion, although Montero sported a large bump on his head from the incident . . . The Mariners told veteran Jon Garland that he wouldn’t be among the five rotation starters, and Garland exercised his opt-out clause, leading to his release. In another move, the Mariners released infielder Mike Jacobs. The moves leave the Mariners with 32 players in their major league camp: 27 roster players and five non-roster invitees.
Not the time to have a problematic outing and IMO Beaven is the best of the four, or at least should be. Unless he does a dramatic turn around in his next outing he won’t be in Seattle on Opening Day.
Well at least we can look forward to the fact that if the back end of the rotation gives up a few runs we have some bats to get them back. Beavan was pushing the envelope though.