DETROIT -- After three days off, first baseman Justin Smoak returned to the Mariners' lineup on Wednesday. Smoak had been nursing a sore right hamstring, and manager Eric Wedge felt it best to give him a few days off.
"He could've played yesterday, but that was my doing," Wedge said. "I wanted to give him an extra day, and just get further removed from that hamstring."
Smoak first sat out a week ago, on April 18, against the Indians. He returned to the lineup last Thursday, but went 0-for-11 in his next three games. The slump prompted Wedge to give him a rest.
With him sitting out Sunday and the Mariners' off-day Monday, Smoak was expected to be back at first base on Tuesday. However, Smoak sat out a third straight day.
Alex Liddi took his spot and hit an eighth-inning home run in a one-run game in his absence. Smoak, who insisted he was fine, took over at first and moved Liddi to third base -- his natural position. Kyle Seagar was given a non-injury-related rest.