SEATTLE -- If all goes well in his rehab start on Sunday at Triple-A Tacoma, left-hander Cliff Lee's first regular-season start with the Mariners will be on April 30 against the Rangers at Safeco Field. That is two days earlier than originally planned, and the reason, manager Don Wakamatsu said, is that he didn't want Lee to go seven days between his rehab start and his maiden Mariners voyage. Lee's addition means someone has to leave the rotation, and that's something being discussed internally and around water coolers in the Northwest.
Right-hander Ian Snell, scheduled to start Saturday's game against the White Sox in Chicago, has been pushed back three days and will now start against the Royals in Kansas City on Tuesday night. "He had a great bullpen [on Wednesday], and it's a chance to continue to work with him," Wakamatsu said. Snell, who is 0-2 with a 5.14 ERA, has been affected by personal issues, including the death of a relative in Florida, which caused him to be away from the team for four days last week. Wakamatsu has not decided who will come out of the rotation. "We'll evaluate what we're going to do closer to the 30th when we have to," he said.