PEORIA, Ariz. – It may have kept him off the field, but it’s not so serious that Evan White can’t joke about it.
The Mariners’ projected starting first baseman has been out of game action the last three days after dealing with a minor groin issue, which first appeared Wednesday morning before the Cactus League game against the Reds.
“I just woke up tight that morning,” White said. “Running on the double, I felt a little goofy. I didn’t really tweak it. Nothing really went or anything like that, just a little tightness.”
White doubled in his first at-bat of that game at Goodyear Park. A day earlier in Maryvale against the Brewers, he had two hits, including a double in his final at-bat.
“I wasn’t used to being on the bases,” he deadpanned, referring to some strikeouts in his first handful of at-bats. “That may have had something to do with it.”
White told the trainer during the game and manager Scott Servais removed him immediately out of precaution.
“He felt it in the game a little bit, nothing crazy,” Servais said. “Just hoping to get him back in there. He probably plays on Monday. We’ll get him out running the bases and stuff tomorrow. It’s more precautionary, where we’re at this point in the spring. No reason to push it. He needs his at-bats. They’re really important for him. This is a really big spring for him. He was swinging the bat really well, but it’s a couple days down and we’ll get him back in there.”
It is frustrating for White considering he had productive at-bats before feeling the discomfort.
“You want to get out there as soon as possible and play as much as you possibly can, and be comfortable and get (plate appearances) now,” he said. “From that side it’s frustrating, obviously, but this is the time to be cautious.”
White participated in the normal pregame workout Saturday.
Infielder Dylan Moore probably won’t return to game action until Wednesday after the off day Tuesday. Moore has been in the concussion protocol after ramming his head into the knee of a Reds defender while stealing second.
“Dylan’s feeling much better,” Servais said. “Again, he will get into the pregame routine today and work up a little sweat and make sure there’s no issues there. He’ll have to go through the concussion protocol and testing, whatever he needs to do, over the next day or so. We have an off day coming up on Tuesday so we’ll probably give him the extra day and let him come back over that.”
Right-handed relievers Sam Tuivailala and Matt Magill, who are both projected for the opening-day bullpen, still have yet to appear in a game due to minor shoulder issues. The expectation is that both could be ready for Cactus League action after Tuesday.
Taijuan Walker is expected to make his first Cactus League appearance Wednesday. He’ll start the game against the Angels in Tempe. Walker threw a live batting practice session Friday.
“He maybe wasn’t quite as sharp (Friday),” Servais said. “He needs to get in a real game. He’s ready to roll. I thought the last 10 pitches he threw were much better. He got after it there. He’s ready to get in an ‘A’ game.”