03/09/12 7:21 PM EST
Peguero, Liddi continue to impress at plate
By Greg Johns / MLB.com
Peguero hit his third home run in Cactus League play with a solo shot off J.J. Putz in the fourth inning as the designated hitter, while Liddi went 3-for-4 with a double, two runs and an RBI while playing first base.
The Mariners have given Peguero a good early look, as he has the most at-bats on the club this spring. He's batting .368 (7-for-19) with a team-leading six RBIs.
"We're just trying to give him every opportunity to get comfortable with this new approach," manager Eric Wedge said. "He's trying to quiet himself down with his lower half, be more under control with the upper half.
"He's so strong, all he needs to do is touch the baseball. And that's what you're seeing."
Liddi, a third baseman who has been seeing extensive time at first base this camp, raised his average to .455 (5-for-11) with the three-hit day, in which he hit the ball hard in all four at-bats.
Wedge said Liddi is benefiting from a more controlled approach this spring as well.
"He is staying within himself," Wedge said. "He's shorter to the baseball. He's a strong kid, as well, and the ball really jumps off his bat.
"He's really worked hard, both offensively and defensively, to tighten up his game a little bit, and I think we're seeing that. We've been seeing that all spring. It was a pretty impressive day by him."
Moore downplays severity of broken hand
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Adam Moore was back at Mariners camp on Friday wearing a splint on his injured right hand. But the 27-year-old catcher says the broken bone in the back of his hand isn't as serious as originally feared, and he's hopeful of returning soon after the brace comes off in two weeks.
Moore might be overly optimistic with his estimate of a 2-4 week absence, but he doesn't intend to let this latest setback derail his comeback after missing all of last season after knee surgery.
"It's tough. But the way I look at it, it's a bump in the road," Moore said. "Nothing is going to hold me down. I'm going to continue to battle back, like I've always done. Nothing is holding me back. I'm going to come back ready to go, just like I haven't missed any time."
Moore said he actually suffered the injury in a bullpen session before Tuesday's game when he went to block a ball in the dirt by Brandon League.
"My hand got caught [at my side] and it hit me square up," he said. "I didn't say anything, and then went to BP and started hitting. It was a little tight, but nothing where I couldn't bear it.
"Then I went to the game and it tightened up more, but I didn't say anything and I was praying to God that icing it and whatever would be fine. I woke up that next morning and went to the cage to start hitting, and that's when I knew something was wrong."
Moore hit a double in the game and was off to a hot start this spring, going 4-for-6 with a home run and three RBIs in three appearances.
Moore will be able to work out while his hand heals. He will also continue all baseball activities except hitting and throwing, which will allow him to catch bullpens while keeping his right hand behind him.
"It's probably the best-case scenario, considering," manager Eric Wedge said. "I had a good talk with him today. His eyes looked good and I think with everything he's been through, that's a good thing for him. There's a level of optimism that we can get him back a lot earlier than we'd first anticipated."
Despite results, Vargas happy with execution
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Jason Vargas wasn't quite as sharp as his perfect debut five days earlier, but the Mariners left-hander said he took a good step in throwing 82 pitches Friday in Seattle's 8-5 Cactus League loss to the D-backs.
Vargas has two more spring starts before the Mariners head to Japan for their season-opening two-game set with the A's. He'll be the Game 2 starter in that series on March 29, so the Mariners are stretching him out quickly.
"I didn't feel tired," Vargas said after giving up six hits and five runs in four innings of work. "Some pitches got up, but I was still executing."
Vargas gave up a three-run home run to third baseman Ryan Roberts in his final frame, but also struck out the side in that inning and exceeded his expected pitch count of 75.
"I don't think they wanted to come get me in the middle of the inning," he said. "They let me see if I could get through it, and I did."
Vargas threw four perfect innings in his Cactus opener Sunday against the Padres, but he faced a tougher lineup with the D-backs trotting out something close to their expected Opening Day lineup.
He noted that teams are also getting further into their springs, nullifying the Mariners' early arrival, as they were the first team in camp due to their Japan trek. But Vargas is working on his own game and said he was pleased with the way he threw, despite not having full control of his changeup.
"Two more games and I'll be ready to go," he said.
Manager Eric Wedge said Vargas already appeared ready to go longer, if needed.
"He threw the ball well," Wedge said. "He was up a bit, but he had good action on his pitches, was strong and we got him up to 80 pitches today. It was a good day for him."
The Mariners re-assigned left-handers Steve Garrison and Philippe Valiquette and right-hander Jarrett Grube to Minor League camp on Friday.
The club had already assigned right-hander Stephen Pryor to Minor League camp when he returned from a week-long leave to deal with a family situation. Along with the retirement of Carlos Guillen, the original 67-man roster now is down to 62 (40 roster players and 22 non-roster invitees).
Third baseman Chone Figgins had his first extra-base hit of the spring with a double in the fifth, and he also made a nice catch of a foul ball, snaring it over the dugout rail in the third inning.
Friday's loss snapped a five-game winning streak for the Mariners, their longest Cactus League run since 2007.
Single-game tickets for the upcoming season go on sale Saturday at 10 a.m. PT.