Who is first for the Mariners?
For now, their first choice at first base is their third receiver.
Ready to make his Mariners debut, Jacob Nottingham was in the batting lineup in sixth and starting at first base for the first time in his major league career for the series opener on Friday in San Diego.
A week ago, the Mariners placed their two best options at first base – Gold Glove winner Evan White (hip flexor) and designated hitter Ty France (inflamed left wrist) – on the injured list of 10 days.
On Thursday, they named Jose Marmolejos as the substitute first baseman.
That leaves a temporary opening at first until France can return – and Mariners manager Scott Servais said he was encouraged that France could drop off the injured list when he is eligible. at the beginning of next week.
“I think on a positive note, Ty France is moving forward. He’s feeling a lot better, ”Servais said on Friday afternoon. “He took a few swings off the tee in the cage before we left (Seattle) to come to San Diego. He’s going to do a little training in (Friday), so it’s progressing and hopefully he can join us at some point during the road trip. And he would play a bunch of first base, obviously.
Nottingham, 26, was claimed waivers Thursday by the Mariners for the second time in recent weeks. The Mariners asked him for waivers from Milwaukee on April 28. He did not appear in a game with the M’s until he was traded to the Brewers on May 2 for cash considerations.
Nottingham is a wide receiver, but he made an appearance as a first baseman for the Brewers in 2019 – for just five strikeouts – and Servais said Nottingham played around 50 games early in his minor league career .
“Mostly he’s been a catcher, but he can swing the bat. He has power, ”Servais said.
In 14 at-bats this season for the Brewers, Nottingham has had three hits – two of which were home runs. His last at-bat was on May 9 as a clamp. He struck off.
Throughout the weekend, Nottingham’s save at first base – save save save – will be another newcomer, companion Eric Campbell, 34, nine days after signing a deal with a minor league.
Campbell played four games with the Class AAA Rainiers over the past week, recording six hits in 17 at batting (. 353) with a double and four RBIs.
Torrens remains “ a big part of our future ”
Luis Torrens, for now, won’t be making the return trip to San Diego with the Mariners.
Torrens was a key piece the Mariners acquired in trading from Austin Nola to the Padres by the trade deadline in 2020. Torrens struggled early in the season, prompting his demotion to Tacoma on Thursday.
Jose Godoy has been called up to take over from Torrens’ roster, and he will be splitting receiver time with Tom Murphy.
Servais said he had a long conversation with Torrens earlier this week, and he publicly promised on Friday that the 25-year-old wide receiver would be back with the Mariners at some point.
“Through my lens, I really thought his offense was starting to affect his defense – and it’s still very concerning,” Servais said. “… Luis is a big part of our future here, and he will come back to help us. But sometimes you have to log out. It will go to Tacoma and reset. He will be splitting his playing time there with (top prospect) Cal Raleigh.
Torrens was part of the Rainiers roster on Friday night – set to start at first base.