SEATTLE -- The names of the seven members of the Mariners' bullpen are positioned symmetrically on the same side of the daily lineup card -- the right side. A little over a month into the 2010 season, Seattle is going without a southpaw relief pitcher.
Closer David Aardsma, setup men Shawn Kelley and Brandon League, and situational relievers Ian Snell, Kanekoa Texeira, Sean White and Jesus Colome are all righties. So is regular setup man Mark Lowe, who's on the 15-day disabled list with an injured back.
But when bullpen coach John Wetteland looked at the stats entering Saturday's game, he saw that lefties were hitting .188 against Aardsma, .217 against League .208 against Texeira. That was good enough for him.
"You don't need to have a lefty in the 'pen just because it's obvious that lefties do well against lefty hitters," Wetteland said. "The point is that power arms usually do well against left-handers. There's weapons to use if you know how to use them. It's a matter of matching up your strengths.
"And then if you have a good sinker and you locate it well, it's going to be hard to hit. And we have both of those types in our bullpen. It always comes down to who's throwing well and who's getting outs, lefty or righty."