Hart activated off disabled list; Gillespie DFA’d

Hart, CoreyVeteran designated hitter Corey Hart was activated off the 15-day disabled list by the Mariners on Friday, with outfielder Cole Gillespie designated for assignment to make room on the 25-man roster.

Hart will be available for Friday’s 4:10 p.m. PT game against the White Sox in U.S. Cellular Field after missing the past seven week with a strained left hamstring.

Hart, 32, hit .297 with three doubles, one triple, one home run and four RBIs in 10 rehab starts with Triple-A Tacoma. The former two-time National League All-Star was batting .209 with five home runs and 17 RBIs for Seattle before hurting his
hamstring while stealing a base in Minnesota on May 18.

Hart signed a one-year deal as a free agent with Seattle after missing all of 2013 with the Brewers following a pair of microfracture knee surgeries. He gives the Mariners a needed right-handed presence in the middle of their predominantly left-handed hitting lineup.

Veteran outfielder Endy Chavez has been filling most of the DH duties recently.

Gillespie, 30, hit .254 with one home run, five RBIs and nine runs scored in 71 at-bats over 34 games since being called up on in late April. The Mariners have 10 days now to trade, release or outright Gillespie’s contract to the Minor Leagues.

With Hart’s return, first baseman Justin Smoak is now the Mariners only remaining player still on a Minor League rehab assignment. Smoak has hit .204 (10-for-49) with five walks, three doubles, one home run and three RBIs in 13 games with Tacoma.

Position players can only stay on a Minor League rehab for 20 days, so the club will need to make a decision on Smoak by Tuesday after the team returns from its current road trip.

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