Another setback for Guti, plus today’s lineups
Franklin Gutierrez’s ongoing health issues continue as the Mariners center fielder had another setback Sunday, just when the team was ready to start him on a 20-day Minor League rehab stint.
Gutierrez has been out six weeks since getting a concussion on June 29 when he got hit in the side of the head with a pickoff throw. He was slated to finally play Sunday for the Class-A Everett AquaSox, but the return of headaches canceled that plan, according to manager Eric Wedge.
He’d been working out the past few days with Everett after Triple-A Tacoma went on the road.
“Now we’ve got to put the brakes on again, so that’s disappointing,” Wedge said. “He’s going to see the specialist again tomorrow. Maybe they have to change the medication. We’ll see.”
Gutierrez has played just 12 games this season after originally being sidelined by a partially torn pectoral muscle, then landing back on the disabled list with the concussion. He hit .267 in 45 at-bats and was looking more like the 2010 Gold Glove center fielder when he got hurt again.
Wedge hopes Gutierrez can play Winter Ball this offseason, but hasn’t given up on this season.
“Right now I just want to focus on hopefully getting him back for some period of time this year,” said Wedge. “He just makes such an impact on our club. We’ve had a couple games this road trip where if we have a different outfield, we probably win.
“And the impact he makes in our lineup as a right-handed bat with some experience that you can really hit anywhere, I value that. The fact he can hit anywhere in the lineup, has a little pop, a pretty good hitter. In just a short period of time, you saw the impact he had on our club.”
The Mariners will wrap up their nine-game road trip today against the Angels at 12:35 p.m. It’s a tough matchup against Jered Weaver, who brings a 15-1 record and 2.13 ERA in a day game where bright sun won’t help hitters trying to pick up his assortment of off-speed pitches.
But Jason Vargas beat his former Long Beach State teammate in a 3-0 decision in their previous meeting last year, so we’ll see how this one plays out. Here’s Seattle’s lineup:
Dustin Ackley 2B
Michael Saunders CF
Kyle Seager 3B
John Jaso DH
Jesus Montero C
Mike Carp 1B
Eric Thames RF
Trayvon Robinson LF
Brendan Ryan SS
Jason Vargas LHP