The Mariners are almost certain to get at least two players back from the injured list Wednesday when they become eligible to return.

Right-handed reliever Diego Castillo (shoulder inflammation) and utility player Dylan Moore (back spasms) are on track to return for the afternoon finale of the three-game Yankees series and the end of the homestand.

But there is less certainty surrounding the other player that is also eligible to return on the same day.

Outfielder Julio Rodriguez is still not certain whether his bruised right wrist/hand feels well enough for him to also return to the lineup.

“It feels OK,” he said before Monday’s game vs. the Yankees. “The range of motion is better. I can move it better.”

But his first attempt to take swings off a tee Sunday felt a little awkward and at times uncomfortable.


“It felt different,” he said. “It didn’t hurt, but it didn’t feel great.”

The Mariners have been ultracareful with Rodriguez, not wanting him to push it too soon after getting hit in the hand by a 97-mph fastball from Rafael Montero on July 30 in Houston.

“The grip strength and what he’s got there is really good,” manager Scott Servais said pregame. “It’s very comparable to what he had when he’s normal. So that’s all positive. But he’s still feeling it a little bit on the vibration on the bat when he’s got his normal bat in his hand. But he’ll pick up the swings today. I kind of want to get an idea by the end of the day today or tonight, if he’s going to be available for us on Wednesday to be activated or we give him an extra day.”

With the Yankees starting lefty Nestor Cortes on Wednesday, it would ideal for the Mariners to have Rodriguez starting in center. But they won’t let the idea of winning one game affect the rest of their season.

“We only want him to come back if he feels 100%,” Servais said.

Castillo pitched one inning Sunday for High-A Everett in a rehab assignment. He allowed five runs (four earned) on three hits while walking and striking out one before reaching his pitch count.


“He felt great,” Servais said. “I don’t think we need to get too caught up with a stat line. Sometimes that happens, but the velocity was there and the stuff was there. He could be activated on Wednesday.”

Moore took live at-bats off lefty Matthew Boyd during a batting-practice session before Monday’s game. He also participate in the full pregame work.

“D-Mo is feeling really good,” Servais said. “I don’t expect to see any setbacks there. He should be able to go on Wednesday.”

So if Castillo and Moore return, who exits the Mariners roster?

Well in the bullpen, it could be a player with minor-league options like right-hander Matt Festa or rookies Matt Brash and Penn Murfee. The Mariners aren’t going to announce a decision on their starting rotation and how they’ll work with starting pitchers on the staff until the upcoming road trip.

As for the position player group, it would seem likely that outfielder Jarred Kelenic is optioned to Class AAA Tacoma. The once-hyped project has struggled since being called up with just two hits in 21 plate appearances with a homer, two RBI and seven strikeouts.


The decisions will get even more complicated when Rodriguez does return to the roster. The Mariners will have to option a bench player in Sam Haggerty, designate first baseman/designated hitter Carlos Santana or option or place Kyle Lewis on the injured list.

Right now, Haggerty has more value than Lewis to the Mariners in almost every aspect other than power. Haggerty can play all three outfield spots and any of the infield spots. At the plate, he’s a switch hitter that has a .314/.352/.523 slash line with seven doubles, a triple, three homers, 10 RBI five stolen bases, three walks and 24 strikeouts in 91 plate appearances. He’s also one of the Mariners best base runners.

“He’s been awesome,” Servais said. “When he gets in the game, things happen. He’ll continue to get plenty of opportunities.”

Santana has a .116/.222/.275 slash line with two doubles, three homers, 10 RBI, nine walks and nine strikeouts in his last 81 plate appearance with a more than a handful of hard-hit balls caught. The Mariners love his professionalism at the plate and in the clubhouse. He’s a very popular leader. That also hasn’t mattered in moves in the past.

Lewis has yet to look comfortable on the field since missing close to six weeks with a concussion. He has played in 13 games since returning, posting a .100/.200/.175 slash line with four hits in 45 plate appearances. He has one homer, two RBI, five walks and 17 strikeouts. But worse than his lack of production at the plate from the concussion is the situation surrounding his surgically repaired right knee. He does not look comfortable and it has clearly robbed him of some speed or lateral movement to play in the field or run the bases with intent. It won’t allow him to play, even as a designated hitter. It’s difficult carrying a player who isn’t available more than a handful of times per week and is so limited in his position usage.

How will they make these decisions?

“It’s the makeup of the entire roster and what those players bring, how much can they play? What do the matchups look like with the handedness of the player?” Servais said. “All those things play into it when you’re trying to make a final decision looking at upcoming schedule, all those things. There’s not a checklist where there’s four things and we keep this guy over that guy. It doesn’t really work that way. It’s how he works with the group together.”