Mariners likely to add arms to expanded roster

Mariners likely to add arms to expanded roster

Mariners likely to add arms to expanded roster
SEATTLE -- Manager Eric Wedge said the Mariners will add two or three players on Thursday when Major League rosters are allowed to expand and likely one or two more when Minor League seasons end.

Wedge said the decision on promotions has been made, but he couldn't name names because the players involved weren't to be informed until after their Minor League games Wednesday night.

He did say there would be some pitching additions, which is something of a given since the Mariners' bullpen currently is at six after Dan Cortes went on the 15-day disabled list last week.

Right-handed reliever Shawn Kelley, throwing well at Triple-A Tacoma after recovering from elbow surgery, is a likely addition. If the Mariners choose to promote another starter, given the struggles of Anthony Vasquez in his first two starts, the Rainiers' best starter recently has been Erasmo Ramirez.

Ramirez, 21, isn't on the 40-man roster, but the Mariners opened one spot there by trading infielder Jack Wilson to the Braves for a player to be named.

Third baseman Alex Liddi (.256, 28 home runs, 99 RBIs) is another who could get a call, though Wedge indicated several players wouldn't be brought up until the Rainiers' season ends next week and Liddi might fall in that category so he can continue playing as much as possible.

Catcher Chris Gimenez is a strong possibility as he's now back to health after coming off the 60-day disabled list with an oblique injury suffered while he was with the Mariners earlier in the season.

The ability to expand rosters also will allow the Mariners to bring first baseman Justin Smoak off the 15-day disabled list without needing to remove anyone from the 25-man roster. Smoak played his third rehab game for Tacoma on Wednesday and is eligible to come off the DL at any time now, his broken nose and cheek now fully healed.

Infielder Chone Figgins, on the 15-day disabled list with a hip flexor injury, had some soreness Wednesday after an extensive workout Tuesday, according to Wedge.

"We'll back him off a little and see how he feels tomorrow," Wedge said. "There's a chance he might go on rehab [to Tacoma} and a chance he might just go on the road trip with us and keep working."