Felix, Pineda will both pitch Monday against A’s

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If you want to circle a Cactus League game on your schedule, mark down this Monday when the Mariners play the Oakland A’s.

Felix Hernandez will make his first Cactus League start that day and is slated to pitch three innings. He’ll be followed by Michael Pineda, the club’s star rookie prospect.

Hernandez threw 33 pitches in a simulated game on Thursday and pronounced himself ready to go.

The American League Cy Young Award winner is being lined up to start Opening Day on April 1 against those same A’s. Pitching Monday puts him on schedule to throw every fifth day until Opening Day.

Pitching coach Carl Willis said Hernandez will pitch some “B” games during the upcoming stretch rather than face American League West opponents, but he’s OK with him facing the A’s on Monday since it’s so early in spring.

That game will be at Oakland’s Phoenix Municipal Stadium at 12:05 p.m. PT.

On an every fifth-day schedule, Hernandez also would be scheduled to face Oakland again on Saturday, March 12. That one likely well get replaced with a “B” game so he’s not facing the A’s too often prior to the regular season.

He’d then face Kansas City on Thursday, March 17; the White Sox on Tuesday, March 22, and the Rangers on Sunday, March 27.

The Rangers game also likely will be replaced by a “B” squad outing.

Meanwhile, here is the Mariners lineup for today’s 12:05 p.m. PT game against the Reds:

Ichiro Suzuki RF
Chone Figgins 3B
Milton Bradley LF
Jack Cust DH
Justin Smoak 1B
Gabe Gross CF
Josh Wilson SS
Dustin Ackley 2B
Adam Moore C
Doug Fister P

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