03/27/2013 8:14 PM ET
Mariners await Bonderman's decision
By Greg Johns / MLB.com
PEORIA, Ariz. -- The Mariners re-assigned pitcher Jeremy Bonderman to their Minor League camp on Wednesday and now will wait to see whether the veteran right-hander accepts that decision or retires from the game.
Bonderman, 30, competed this spring as a non-roster invitee on a Minor League deal while attempting to come back from a series of health issues that have sidelined him since 2010, when he was with the Tigers.
He performed well enough to stay in the hunt for a rotation spot until the end, but the Mariners wound up going with young right-handers Blake Beavan and Brandon Maurer for their final two jobs.
"We had a good conversation with him this morning and just told him to take a little time for himself," said manager Eric Wedge. "He's a veteran guy, he's only 30 years old, but has accomplished so much and been through so much in a short period of time.
"We really want him to keep going because that's what we feel he needs to do. He's been very impressive this camp. He's just building himself up and working his way back, but you've seen the progression from the first bullpen and first game. But he just needs to keep pitching. We really feel if he goes down and pitches like we hope he does, he's going to pitch for us in the big leagues this year."
The Mariners also sent down right-hander Erasmo Ramirez, who was slowed the last week by some minor soreness in his arm. Ramirez threw three controlled innings in a Minor League intrasquad game Wednesday and, like Bonderman, needs to pitch more before he's fully ready.
"He's just still working his way back after missing a little time," Wedge said. "He just needs to go out and continue to pitch and build himself back up and keep working on solidifying his delivery and having the command he needs and pitching with that type of aggressiveness."
Wedge said Ramirez would continue working as a starter in Tacoma.
The decision to send down the two pitchers leaves only one roster issue still to be decided. Wedge noted that they'll be carrying three left-handed relievers, which means the bullpen situation is decided with Lucas Luetge definitely on the team, along with Oliver Perez and Charlie Furbush, along with right-handers Tom Wilhelmsen, Stephen Pryor, Carter Capps and Kameron Loe.
Wedge ejected during Felix's final start
PEORIA, Ariz. -- Eric Wedge managed a new first in the last home game of the Cactus League schedule on Wednesday, getting ejected by home plate umpire Seth Buckminster in the sixth inning of a 10-7 victory over the Dodgers after coming out of the dugout to defend starter Felix Hernandez.
"That's my first Spring Training toss," said Wedge, who is beginning his 10th season as a Major League manager. "I never even go out there or say anything, if you notice. But there was some back and forth with Felix and I'm not going to let that happen. It's as simple as that."
Hernandez gestured at Buckminster after a ball was called on a pitch to Joe Pederson as the Mariners ace neared the end of his outing. When the situation threatened to escalate, Wedge hustled out and was immediately tossed.
Wedge then jogged down the right-field line and out of the stadium as Hernandez got Pederson to fly out for his final out in a six-inning performance that completed his Spring Training.
The skipper said he had no problem with Hernandez's actions.
"He's out there competing," Wedge said.
Hernandez threw 96 pitches in his longest Cactus League outing and said he's eager to move ahead to the regular season, where he'll pitch against the A's on Monday in his sixth Opening Day start.
"I felt strong today," Hernandez said. "Not as sharp, like the other ones, but it was a good workout. It's been a long Spring Training. I just want to get out of here and go to Opening Day."
Hernandez gave up nine hits, including a two-run double by Dodgers pitcher Ted Lilly just before the flare-up with Buckminster. He walked one and hit a batter while striking out three.
"My command was not there," Hernandez said. "The breaking ball was pretty good, but my fastball wasn't there. I was falling behind most of the time. But I felt strong. I felt good. That's the bottom line."
• Hisashi Iwakuma will start the Mariners' final Cactus League game on Thursday at 12:05 p.m. PT against the Cubs in Mesa, with Maurer slated to pitch Saturday's exhibition against the Rockies in Salt Lake City.
• Maurer was named the Peoria Diamond Club Rookie of the Year on Wednesday after leading the Cactus League with his 0.90 ERA. He is tied for second in the Cactus League for wins with three and is third in strikeouts with 22.
• Second baseman Dustin Ackley recorded his sixth straight multi-hit game on Wednesday with a 2-for-4 day, and has raised his spring average from .292 to .396 in that span.