Smoak sidelined with tight hamstring
First baseman Justin Smoak is not in the lineup tonight after his four-hit outing on Tuesday, which understandably raised some eyebrows.
Turns out the big first baseman has some mild tightness in his right hamstring, so he’s getting a day off. Dustin Ackley starts in his place at first, which is a first in itself.
Munenori Kawasaki gets the start at second base.
Ackley played first base his entire junior year at North Carolina while recovering from Tommy John surgery, so he’s not new to the position. But he has only seen some very spot duty there in late-inning relief during Cactus League play and one game last year.
Smoak went 4-for-5 on Tuesday to raise his season average to .250, so not ideal timing to come up gimpy. But you can bet the Mariners want to make sure a tight hamstring doesn’t turn into something more. We’ll hear from manager Eric Wedge and hopefully Smoak himself when the clubhouse opens in a little bit.
Here’s the full lineup for tonight’s game against the Indians:
Chone Figgins LF
Dustin Ackley 1B
Ichiro Suzuki RF
Jesus Montero DH
Kyle Seager 3B
Michael Saunders CF
Miguel Olivo C
Munenori Kawasaki 2B
Brendan Ryan SS
Jason Vargas LHP