Bonderman eager for Sunday return to Majors
The veteran right-hander has been recalled from Triple-A Tacoma and will start Sunday’s 11:10 a.m. PT game against the Twins’ Scott Diamond. The Mariners will have to make a roster move to add Bonderman both to their 25-man Major League roster as well as their 40-man roster.
Alex Liddi seems the likely candidate to get sent back to Tacoma to make room on the 25-man. Liddi was brought up to provide insurance at first base with Justin Smoak and Michael Morse both sidelined, but he’s yet to play as Kendrys Morales has capably filled the first base duties.
Manager Eric Wedge said he hopes Smoak can return on Sunday against Twins lefty Scott Diamond, since his right oblique injury doesn’t hamper his right-handed swing. Morse is likely another day or two away from returning from a strained quad.
As for Bonderman, Wedge said the eight-year veteran is eager to get a return shot at the Majors after sitting out the past two seasons while having surgeries on his shoulder and elbow. Bonderman signed a Minor League deal with the Mariners last winter and competed for a rotation spot in spring, but wasn’t quite ready and spent the first two months at Tacoma.
“He’s under control, but you can tell he’s excited to be here,” Wedge said. “For a 30-year-old, he’s been through so much. He’s worked so hard to get back here, that’s been evident here for the last year. So good for him. He deserves the opportunity.”
Bonderman went 2-4 with a 4.52 ERA in 11 starts in Tacoma, pitching better as he went in his first regular-season action since his last start with the Tigers on Oct. 1, 2010 at Baltimore.
“It’s been good for him to be down there and pitch every fifth day,” Wedge said. “He’s been pretty consistent down there. His arm’s been good, his stuff’s been good. It’s just a matter of how it translates up here, really.”