Mike Freeman has been called up from Class AAA Tacoma to provide infield depth
The hope for a quick return to the lineup in a day or two will now be at least 10-day wait for the Mariners and shortstop Jean Segura. The club placed its leadoff hitter and starting shortstop on the disabled list on Tuesday afternoon with a strained right hamstring.
To replace Segura on the roster, Seattle selected the minor league contract of infielder Mike Freeman. The Mariners also had to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Freeman. To do so, they designated left-handed reliever Paul Fry for assignment.
Segura suffered the injury early in Monday’s home opener at Safeco Field.
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“I felt it in my first at-bat running down the line,” he said. “I could feel something pinch in my hamstring. I kept playing. I stretched it during the game. But when I took my last at-bat, I noticed something was wrong with it while batting. I told the trainers to take me out of the game because I don’t want to continue to play like that and get worse.”
The initial postgame hope was that Segura would only miss a few games, but with the Mariners carrying an extra reliever and a short bench and the recovery looking more like a week, they placed him on the DL.
“It’s a mild strain,” manager Scott Servais. “I really thought (Monday) that he was going to miss just a couple of days. We’re trying to be out ahead of this thing as much as anything. With the way the rules are now, with the 10-day DL, it makes more sense just to put him on the DL. I fully expect he’ll be back and ready to go at the end of 10 days. It’s disappointing. He’s off to a great start. We certainly love what he brings to our lineup and our team, but this is probably the right thing.”
Segura hoped he would be back in 10 days.
“They say it’s nothing that will take a lot of time,” Segura said. “They said it would be seven to 10 days. But I want to come back to play when I’m 100 percent. I want to take my time and do the best I can in the training room and my rehab and I will come back as soon as I can.”
Segura’s legs are a massive part of his game as shortstop and leadoff hitter.
“With how he goes about his game, it is important,” Servais said. “We want to be cautious with this one.”
With Segura out, the Mariners will turn to the combination of Taylor Motter and Freeman to handle the shortstop duties. Motter will get most of the starts.
“We are all baseball players and want to play every day,” Motter said. “I’ve accepted the role of being a utility guy here, knowing that if somebody goes day that I will be ready to fill in for them. Hopefully Jean gets better really soon because we need him out there. He’s one of our main guys.”
Segura was a catalyst at the top of the Mariners’ order. In eight games, he was hitting .313 and a .353 on-base percentage with a homer and three RBI. With Segura out, Jarrod Dyson takes over in the leadoff spot. It’s where the Mariners initially planned to bat Dyson coming into spring training.
“It’s an opportunity to get him jumpstarted,” Servais said. “We certainly need him at the top. You see what we are like when he’s on the bases, it’s a different team. We just need get him on base a little more often.”
Freeman was hitting .333 (4-for-12) in three games with the Rainiers. He appeared in 13 games with the Mariners last season, hitting .385 (5-for-13) with a double and a RBI.
“It’s just kind of the nature of the business,” Freeman said. “You take it as it comes and deal with it. It’s kind of new territory for me so you just kind of take it as best as you can. You can’t get new down because there’s always opportunity in this game. I felt there was still a lot of opportunity here to have an impact, and they relied that to me when I got taken off the roster in the spring. I’m excited to get back here and help the team win some games and see what happens.”
Fry, 24, had made one relief appearance with the Rainiers this season. In five minor league seasons, he’s posted a 2.89 ERA in 151 appearances.
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On this day in Mariners history …
1984 – Rookie first baseman Alvin Davis makes his Major League debut and becomes only the second Mariner to homer in his first M.L. game, a three-run homer off Dennis Eckersley, in his second at-bat. Davis went on to win the American League Rookie of the Year award for 1984.
1985 – Gorman Thomas powers the Mariners to a 14-6 win over Oakland, as he belts three home runs, drives in six runs and scores four times, giving the Mariners a three-game sweep of the A’s to start the season. The Mariners totaled a club-record seven home runs in the game as Al Cowens, Jim Presley, Phil Bradley and Dave Henderson each went deep.
1990 – Mark Langston (7.0 IP) and Mike Witt combine to no-hit the Mariners, as the Angels win 1-0 in the first no-hitter in which the Mariners have ever been involved.
1996 – Dan Wilson becomes the fifth Mariner to hit three home runs in a game in a 9-1 win at Detroit.
1999 – The Mariners collect seven consecutive hits in an eight-run 3rd inning vs. Oakland, tying the team record.
2000 – John Olerud doubles in the first inning at Detroit, marking the first hit ever at Comerica Park.
2000 – The Mariners drop to 1-4 in stadium openers with a 5-2 loss in Detroit at Comerica Park.
2001 – Ichiro guns down Oakland’s Terrance Long at third base (trying to advance from 1st base), in a play that is now known as “the throw”.
2002 – Edgar Martinez scores a run in Seattle’s 8-4 win at Anaheim. It is the 1,063rd run scored in his career, surpassing Ken Griffey Jr. as the Mariners’ all –time leader in runs scored.
2011 – Trailing 7-0 after 6 innings against the Blue Jays, the Mariners score 8 runs over the final 3 innings in a stunning 8-7 win. Luis Rodriguez capped the scoring with a 2 RBI walk-off single in the bottom of the 8th inning. It was the fourth time in club history to come from 7 runs down to win (last: July 3, 1999 at TEX).
2012 – The Mariners scored four runs over the last two innings (1 in 8th, 3 in 9th) to complete a 4-3 comeback win over the Texas Rangers. Having not scored in 23.0 consecutive innings, Dustin Ackley put the Mariners on the board with a RBI single in the 8th. A sac fly by Jesus Montero pulled the Mariners to within one run, and Michael Saunders tied it with a double. John Jaso, in his first start as a Mariner, plated the go-ahead run with a 2-out single to center field off Rangers closer Joe Nathan.
2014 – Felix Hernandez strikes out 11 batters in 7.0+ innings to lead the Mariners to a 6-4 win over the A’s to improve to 6-3 on the season. Felix becomes the 5th starting pitcher in club history to open a season by winning his first 3 starts (beginning the season in the starting rotation). Brad Miller and Mike Zunino hit home runs in the victory.
2015 – Nelson Cruz hit his first home run as a Mariner–a 430-foot, 3-run home run in 8th inning to lead Seattle to a 5-4, 11-inning victory over the A’s…Shortstop Brad Miller drove in the winning-run in the top of the 11th inning with a double to left to score Logan Morrison…LHP Tyler Olson earned his first MLB win after an inning of scoreless relief.