Smoak sidelined, day to day with oblique strain

Smoak sidelined, day to day with oblique strain

SEATTLE -- Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak was out of the lineup Sunday and is day to day after feeling the oblique muscle in his right side tighten during his first at-bat in Saturday's 5-2 loss to the Rangers.

Smoak stayed in the game for two more at-bats before telling the trainers and manager Eric Wedge that he'd felt something in his side while checking a swing early in the game.

"Hopefully it's nothing too crazy," said Smoak, who has hit .286 over his last 25 games and is second on the club in on-base percentage this season at .352. "I've done it before. It was bad last time, so it's not as bad like that. It's just a little tight. I felt like I had to say something. I didn't want to because it happened my first at-bat and I still got some more at-bats in.

"But I'm feeling it in my right side. I did it swinging right-handed, trying to stop. So I don't know. It's just a little tight. Hopefully we can just give it a couple days and everything will be all right."

Wedge sounded optimistic as well after Smoak checked in before Sunday's series finale with the Rangers.

"He felt a little better than we anticipated this morning, so we'll just have to take it day by day," Wedge said. "He's not going to do anything today, we just tested him out and got him in the water. It'll be interesting how he feels tomorrow. If he's any better than today, that will be key or is it exactly the same? We'll give it a couple days and go from there."

Kendrys Morales started at first on Sunday and will get the bulk of the duty there in Smoak's absence, though right fielder Michael Morse is also an experienced first baseman and will be an option as well.

Greg Johns is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB as well as his Mariners Musings blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.