Results tagged ‘ Miguel Olivo ’

Olivo MRI shows strained adductor muscle

The MRI on catcher Miguel Olivo revealed a strained adductor muscle in his groin, as expected, the Mariners announced Monday morning.

Olivo has begun therapy on his injured left leg and will likely be able to do some throwing in the coming days, but the team will proceed cautiously because of the strain catching puts on that particular muscle.

The club said there’s been no timeline set on his return.

Olivo hurt his leg on Saturday when he felt the muscle give way after tagging up at third and running home on a sacrifice fly.

Adam Moore was scheduled to start in Olivo’s place in Monday’s Cactus League game against the A’s, but he was scratched later in the morning because of illness.

Chris Gimenez, a non-roster invitee, will now start today’s game. The other catchers on the roster are Josh Bard and 20-year-old Steven Baron.

Olivo says he just needs 1-2 weeks of rest

Miguel Olivo is still waiting word like everyone else on the results of his MRI test on his strained groin muscle, but the Mariners catcher said he was feeling better than expected Sunday and plans to be back soon.

Olivo said the initial plan is for him to rest his left leg completely for 1-2 weeks, then begin riding a bike and working in a pool and see how it progresses.

“From yesterday I didn’t think I’d be able to walk right now, but I’m walking OK,” he said. ” I feel it when I push side to side. But we’ll give it 1-2 weeks and then we’ll see after that.”

Olivo said he felt a twinge when he pushed off third base after tagging up on a sacrifice fly by Sean Kazmar and then grabbed his leg as he approached home, eventually sprawling face first onto the plate.

“I just dropped,” he said. “I didn’t want to keep pushing. Things happen. And yesterday I felt better than any day in Spring Training. I know I’ll be back soon because I like to work hard and when you work hard, things get better.

“This is the first time I’ve had any injury with my body. I’m not going to be like a little baby. I’m not going to babysit that thing. I’ll work hard and follow the doctor with one week’s rest and then we’ll see.”

Olivo said the irony was that he wasn’t even running hard when the muscle gave way, since there was no throw to the plate.

“When I felt it right away I knew because I’d never had that feeling before. That’s why I went down so quick. The doctor said he was glad I did that because if I’d kept running, it would have been worse.

“I think I’ll be OK,” he said. “I guarantee you that.”

Will he be ready for Opening Day in April 1?

“I hope so,” he said. “God [willing], I know I’ll be there.”

Olivo undergoes MRI, but no word until Monday

No word yet on the condition of catcher Miguel Olivo, although he underwent his MRI test on Sunday morning on his strained left groin muscle. The outcome of that test won’t be revealed until Monday, however, when a radiologist is available to read the results.

Olivo clutched his leg and fell face down on home plate while scoring on a sacrifice fly in Saturday’s game against the Indians.

Olivo was at the Peoria facility this morning and walking around, but will be undergoing treatment and awaiting his medical tests before any determination on his status is made.

The only other injury of news so far is some back stiffness that has kept knuckleballer Charlie Haeger from throwing in a Cactus League game yet. Haeger said he’ll play catch today and hopes to be throwing normally in a few days.

WIth Olivo out, Josh Bard starts at catcher today when the Mariners travel to Scottsdale to face the World Series champion Giants at 12:05 p.m. PT.

The game will be broadcast live on 710 ESPN Seattle.

Tim Lincecum gets the start for San Francisco, which always maks things interesting. Lincecum has never faced Seattle in a regular-season game, but has thrown against them before in Spring Training.

Here’s the Mariners lineup he’ll face:

Dustin Ackley 2B
Adam Kennedy 3B
Milton Bradley LF
Jack Cust DH
Justin Smoak 1B
Ryan Langerhans CF
Carlos Peguero RF
Josh Bard C
Luis Rodriguez SS
Nate Robertson P

Also expected to pitch today are Blake Beavan, Brandon League, Garrett Olson and Chris Ray.

Olivo’s injury casts pall over Mariners victory

OlivoMiguelPain.jpgMariners catcher Miguel Olivo clutches his leg in pain after falling to the ground while scoring on a sacrifice fly during Saturday’s Cactus League game. Below, Olivo sits in frustration while waiting for a cart to take him to the clubhouse. (Photos by Lenny Ignelzi/AP)

It’s always dangerous to speculate much on injuries before the official reports are in, but without question the Mariners are concerned about the status of Miguel Olivo after the veteran catcher grabbed his leg and fell face first onto home plate while scoring on a sacrifice fly in Saturday’s 7-2 victory over the Indians at Peoria Stadium.

It was a bizarre sight — so bizarre that many in the crowd initially began laughing, thinking Olivo had taken a pratfall until he rolled over and tried to sit up in obvious pain.

OlivoMiguelHurt.jpgThere was no play at the plate on the deep fly ball by second baseman Sean Kazmar. Olivo was simply running home to score an easy run when his leg gave way.

Eventually Olivo was helped off the field and carted to the clubhouse, where the medical staff said he had a strained left groin muscle that will be further evaluated with an MRI test on Monday.

Until then, nobody is going to know or say much. But judging by Olivo’s pain and the difficulty for any athlete — particulary a catcher who spends nine innings in a crouch — to recover from those types of muscle injuries, this one could be a serious setback.

The Mariners have 27 days until they open the regular season, so there is some time. But even in a best-case scenario, their starting catcher and a guy who has quickly established himself as a leader of the young pitching staff will now miss most or all of the remaining Spring Training.

And if his injury is longer than the four-week variety, the Mariners will face some tough choices as to how to fill his absence. Adam Moore, who had lost his starting role when Seattle signed Olivo to a two-year, $6.25 million deal in free agency, now needs to step back up and grab the reins.

Veteran Josh Bard, a non-roster invitee who was competing with Moore for the backup job, suddenly seems a cinch for a spot if Olivo is out for a significant period of time.

Chris Gimenez, another non-roster guy who can play multiple positions, could have increased value. The other catcher in camp is 20-year-old Steven Baron, who has shown well with the bat in his limited opportunities so far but remains more of a long-term prospect.

We’ll find out more on Monday after the MRI tests, but suffice to say that this is the first real bad news to hit Mariners camp. Olivo had been a breath of fresh air with his vocal presence and constant enthusiasm and support of his pitchers.

He’s also a guy whose durability was one of his selling points. It will be a shame if his return is cut short by a serious injury, but we’ll have to wait and see on this one.

Sorting through the Miguel Olivo contract situation

It’s been widely reported — including here — that free agent catcher Miguel Olivo signed a two-year, $7 million deal with the Mariners. And the presumption thus was that he’d be earning about $3.5 million for the coming season.

OlivoMiguelMug10.jpgTurns out, neither number is entirely accurate, according to information obtained by

Olivo will actually earn $6.25 million for the next two seasons. While he is guaranteed to make at least $7 million from the Mariners, that includes a potential $750,000 buyout from the club if it declines its option for a third season in 2013.

The veteran catcher will make $2.75 million for the coming year — a $2.25 million base contract, plus a $500,000 signing bonus.

He is due to make $3.5 million the following year in 2012. Then the Mariners have the option of either giving Olivo the $750,000 buyout in ’13 or keeping him for that third season at a $3 million base salary that could rise to as much as $3.75 million based on his amount of playing time in 2011 and ’12.

While we’re talking contracts, the Mariners will pay both infielder Adam Kennedy and catcher Josh Bard $750,000 if they make the Major League roster. Both veterans signed Minor League deals recently.

Kennedy’s contract includes further playing-time bonuses that start kicking in at $50,000 for 350 plate appearances. He could earn up to an additional $450,000 if he maxes out at 600 plate appearances.

Bard has a similar deal, though his bonuses begin at 300 plate appearances and max out at $250,000 for 500 plate appearances.

Both veterans have language in their deals that allows them to request their release if they’re not on the Major League roster when training camp breaks at the end of March.

Death of friend gives Bard new perspective

Yeah, Josh Bard is excited about re-signing with the Mariners and getting a chance to compete for a roster spot this spring. But the veteran catcher will bring a different perspective to Peoria, having witnessed the death of his closest friend less than three months ago when their truck overturned on a hunting trip in Colorado.’s Jim Street told the initial story shortly after the accident, in which Denver pastor Pat McKendry died after being tossed from the back of a Ford F-150 truck driven by his son on a backroad in eastern Colorado.

Bard said Tuesday he recovered quickly from his own minor injuries in the crash, but the emotional scars are a different story.

“Obviously emotionally it’s been a lot harder than physically,” he said. “I got banged up a little bit, but I’m totally recovered. It’s heartbreaking to lose your best friend. But ultimately I feel I’ve been blessed to have another day on this planet.

“To go out and put a uniform on again in Spring Training will definitely be a different feeling [this year]. I’m going to try to have more fun and not take myself so seriously all the time. Sometimes this job becomes tedious and pressure-filled. But when you’re given a second chance, you can go out and have fun and encourage your teammates to do the same.

“Baseball is very important to me, but it’s not my whole life. I understand that now.”

I talked to Bard shortly after he agreed to a one-year Minor League deal with an invite to Spring Training and he’s eager to reunite with Eric Wedge, who managed him in Triple-A for a season and then his first four years in Cleveland.

He said Wedge runs a tight ship and is extremely clear where he stands with players, which he thinks will be a good thing with a young team. He draws a lot of parallels with the Indians club Wedge inherited and took to the ALCS championship.

And Bard also says he has a good relationship with assistant GM Jeff Kingston from their days together in San Diego, which is why he believes the Mariners when they told him he’ll get a chance to compete with Adam Moore for the backup job behind Miguel Olivo.

Bard started last season in Tacoma and might well do so again, but his return gives the Mariners added depth at catcher and a guy at 32 who feels he’s still got a lot to offer.

“I know Miguel will be the every-day guy. I understand that,” Bard said. “With the numbers he’s put up, he deserves that. And I’ve heard from around the league he’s a good guy to play with.

“Jeff [Kingston] told me the opportunity is here to come in and win a spot. They said we’re not going to give you anything. They believe in Adam, which they should. But they need to put the best team on the field while developing these guys.

“The thing I’ve learned in this game, regarldess of whether you sign a big-league or a minor-league deal — and I’ve signed ’em all — you’ve got to play well. If you do, you’ll get an opportunity. If not, you wait. I feel my best days are still ahead of me. I’m 32 and healthy. So I’ll try to help Olivo and Adam and make the best of my chances.”

Olivo signing official … finally

OlivoMiguel.jpgYeah, this one feels like old news. The Mariners announced the official signing of catcher Miguel Olivo on Monday, 25 days after the veteran free agent agreed to terms on the final day of the Winter Meetings.

But this one got hung up in the paperwork stages, first when Olivo didn’t come to Seattle for his physical for two weeks and then in recent days because the Major League Baseball offices pretty much shut down after the Christmas holidays.

Once business as usual resumed Monday, the Mariners put a bow on the Olivo deal and announced the two-year deal, with a club option for a third season in 2013.

While some eyebrows have been raised about bringing back a catcher who struggled to hit in Safeco Field in his first stint with the Mariners in 2004-05, I like this deal. Olivo should upgrade the catching position and provide a veteran presence behind the plate, no small factor with a club featuring a number of youthful pitching prospects.

When you’re working in guys like Michael Pineda, Dan Cortes, Josh Lueke and even Doug Fister and Jason Vargas, it doesn’t hurt to have a catcher who has more than the minimal big-league experience that Adam Moore and Rob Johnson brought last year.

Olivo also adds a little pop to a lineup that needs all that it can get. Over the last two seasons, Olivo is tied for fifth among Major League catchers with 37 home runs. Over the past five years, he’s fifth among big-league catchers with 81 home runs.

Will he produce the same numbers at Safeco? Probably not as a right-handed hitter. But I also don’t expect him to struggle nearly as much as he did as a youngster.

The Mariners are going with more youth next season, but it makes sense to sprinkle in veterans in critical places to help with the building process. Having one young catcher in Moore is great. Having two inexperienced catchers, as was attempted last year, didn’t work so well.

The Mariners designated relief pitcher Anthony Varvaro for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster. That one seemed predictable, given the 26-year-old has struggled with his control and didn’t seem destined for a bullpen spot this coming season. Varvaro likely winds up back in Tacoma, but we’ll have to wait the obligatory 10 days to see how that plays out.

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)