Silva takes breezy view on pitching
Right-hander feels sinker improves when wind is blowing out
LAS VEGAS -- It was a hitter's paradise on Friday night with a 17-mph wind blowing out to straightaway center at Cashman Field.The Mariners took advantage by hitting a Spring Training-best six home runs in a 10-2 victory over the Cubs. Jose Lopez, Adrian Beltre, Raul Ibanez, Mike Morse, Kenji Johjima and Brad Wilkerson all homered for the Mainers. Contrary to popular belief, Mariners' right-hander Carlos Silva, however, did not mind that the wind was blowing out. "That makes it sink," Silva said of his pitches. "It's better when the wind is blowing out, than blowing in. I tell people that and they don't believe it. For me, I like when the wind is blowing out. It is easier to command and to throw the sinker. It is going to dive more. When it is blowing in, it is more straight." Silva had the Cubs beating the ball into the dirt. He was economical, needing just 49 pitches, 34 of them being for strikes, in five innings. He allowed just one run, an Alfonso Soriano home run, and three hits in that span. "My command was right there," Silva said. "Every pitch I throw was right where I want it to throw it. I got a lot of ground balls when I needed it, got the double plays when I needed them." He was able to get Mark DeRosa and Ryan Theriot to ground into inning-ending double plays in the second and third innings. Silva was having a rough Spring Training before Friday night. He was 0-2 with a 9.20 ERA in his first four starts, allowing 28 hits and 15 earned runs in 14 2/3 innings. He said his start against the Cubs was "definitely" a confidence booster. "You always want to get out of Spring Training with a fresh mind," Silva said. "It's not like, if you have a bad game and you're thinking about the same stuff, 'What have I got to do? What have I got to do?' I don't think it's time for that. It's time to get ready for the season." Silva, who will be Seattle's No. 3 starter, pitched in some strong rotations with the Twins before signing with the Mariners. "We had a very good rotation in Minnesota, but I've never seen one rotation like this one before," Silva said. "It's like, here, anybody can win or throw 200 innings. When you have a guy like Miguel [Batista] in the fifth slot, that tells you something good about our rotation."
Alan Eskew is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.