Thursday’s Game 32 recap: Mariners 6, Cubs 4

PAndinoRobertlayer of the Game: Robert Andino showed again why he could be a very valuable addition this season as a veteran utility player with a capable bat. Andino went 3-for-4 with a double, raising his spring average to .340, and Eric Wedge noted postgame that he’s comfortable playing him at second, short or third and expects to use him a fair amount during the season.

Stat of the Game: Michael Morse hit his ninth home run, a solo shot in the second season, to set a new Mariners record for most bombs in a spring. The homer was the 55th by the club this spring, which ties for the second-most by any Major League club in the past 20 years. Only the 1999 Cubs hit more with 62. Here’s video of Morse’s opposite field blast.

Storyline: Hisashi Iwakuma pitched four innings in his final tuneup before starting the season as the No. 2 starter behind Felix Hernandez on Tuesday, giving up three runs on five hits. Iwakuma threw 55 pitches, but came out a little earlier than expected when a blister condition on the middle finger of his pitching hand started peeling. He said it wasn’t a concern and happens every spring, but Wedge didn’t want to push it at this point.

Worth noting: Kameron Loe pitched two innings of relief, allowing one hit and an unearned run, and Wedge said he’ll be one of the primary considerations when the Mariners need a multiple-inning reliever. The team doesn’t appear to have a true long man, so it’ll be interesting to see how they cobble things together if a starter has a short outing in the early going.

Quote of the Day: “He’s strong and he works on his craft. Everybody looks at
him like a big, strong guy, which he is. But he’s a hitter first  –  Eric Wedge on Michael Morse.

Next: The Mariners are off on Friday as they travel to Salt Lake City, where they’ll play the Rockies on Saturday in their final spring fling at 12:05 p.m. PT in a game that will be televised on ROOT Sports. Brandon Maurer will start that game in his final warmup before making his Major League debut on Thursday against the A’s.

Here’s is the link to today’s boxscore.

Here’s my preview of the upcoming season, looking at how much the new additions have altered the look of the Mariners lineup.

And here’s my notebook with all today’s news from camp, including the impending decision on Jason Bay and Casper Wells.

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