PEORIA, Ariz. -- Michael Morse understands it's just Spring Training and whatever happens in March is long forgotten once regular-season play begins in a few weeks, but that doesn't stop him from taking pleasure in knocking balls over the wall.
Morse hit two more home runs on Thursday -- tying for the Cactus League lead with the White Sox's Paul Konerko with five -- in a five-RBI day in the Mariners' 8-7 victory over the Reds.
"For me, personally, I'm always working and trying to fine tune my swing or defense or offense or whatever it could be," said Morse. "It's always good to get results, no matter what time of year it is.
"My timing is pretty good. My at-bats are starting to become quality at-bats in a row. Early in spring, you might have one good one and then a couple bad ones. I'm starting to get a nice rhythm and good feel. And for me, it's a feel I don't think about, it just happens."
What happened on Thursday is Morse went 3-for-3 and hit three balls very hard. Two went over the wall, a powerful two-run shot off Homer Bailey deep to center in the fourth inning and then a high, arching three-run pop that just cleared the left-field fence off Clay Hensley in the fifth.
But it was his double in the second off Bailey that had him smiling afterward.
"Out of all the at-bats, that was the one I liked the most, because that was two strikes and he threw me a breaking ball in the dirt the pitch before and I swung at it," Morse said. "So, I made a little adjustment and stayed through the ball and hit that double off the wall and it felt pretty good."
It looked good to manager Eric Wedge, who has been seeking the kind of middle-of-the-order presence Morse has instantly added this spring.
"He's strong and he's really working to stay through the ball," Wedge said. "And he stayed through a couple good ones. The first one was really impressive, the double. He had to go down and get it. That's a ground-ball pitch and he stayed down and through it and really scooped it out of there and hit it a long way.
"Obviously, the second one he really touched and he stayed through a slider on the last one. So, it was a really good day for Mike. He takes a lot of pride in his work and what he's trying to do."