6/10/2014 11:50 P.M. ET
Mariners honor Jeter with pregame ceremony, gifts
By Adam Lewis / MLB.com
SEATTLE -- Media members wiggled and pushed their way into Safeco Field's visitors' dugout a few hours before Tuesday's first pitch to hear Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter talk about his favorite Seattle memories. He was then honored in a special pregame ceremony attended by Jay Buhner, Edgar Martinez, Robinson Cano and Felix Hernandez.
The Mariners presented Jeter with a chair from the Kingdome, a base, a watch with a personal inscription from Cano and a $5,000 donation to the Turn 2 Foundation.
Jeter is one of 12 active players to have played in both the Kingdome and Safeco Field. At the age of 20, he made his Major League debut in the Kingdome on May 29, 1995, going 0-for-5 in an 8-7 Mariners victory over the Yankees.
What does Jeter remember from his debut? Two things.
"I was 0-for-5, and after the game my dad was in town and we tried to get something to eat, and everything was closed," Jeter said. "We ended up walking into a McDonald's."
The next night was better. He went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and got his first hit off Mariners pitcher Tim Belcher.
A few months later, Jeter wasn't active for the 1995 American League Division Series, but he remembers watching from the bench as the Mariners stormed back from an 0-2 series deficit, taking Game 5 in extra innings on Martinez's famous double down the left-field line.
"That team had a lot to do with this new stadium being built," Jeter said. "These fans have always been great. I just remember how loud it was in that stadium. I had good seats but I wasn't playing."
In all, Jeter has played five postseason games in Seattle ('00, '01). Entering Tuesday, he was a .299 career hitter vs. the Mariners in the regular season.
"This is the last time I'm going to see Derek Jeter play live," Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon said. "It's going to be an emotional three days. I'm honored. What a career. I'm sure everybody's said everything you can possibly say about Derek Jeter, but for me, for the last 20 years, Derek Jeter has been everything that's right about the game of baseball."
Mariners sign 74th overall Draft pick Morgan
SEATTLE -- The Mariners announced the signing of outfielder Gareth Morgan, their second pick (74th overall) in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft, prior to Tuesday's series opener against the Yankees at Safeco Field.
The team's policy is to not discuss contract specifics, but a source close to the situation confirmed Morgan's signing bonus is $2 million, well above the $760,300 usually slotted for the 74th selection.
On Tuesday, Morgan (Blyth Academy, Toronto, Ontario) warmed up with the Mariners and took batting practice, hitting a pair of home runs -- one into the upper deck in left field. The 6-foot-4, 220-pound right-handed hitter will begin his pro career in the Arizona Rookie League, though he needs to secure a United States visa before playing.
Morgan said he'll fly home Wednesday, then to Arizona on Friday, where he'll wait for his paperwork to clear.
"It's been crazy. At the start of the Draft, I really didn't know what was going to happen, but I'm glad Seattle picked me," he said. "I toured the city Sunday and went on a couple [Ride the Ducks] tours. It's a great place to be and an exciting time."
Touted for his raw power, Morgan, 18, was the final pick of Competitive Balance Round B. He's currently a member of the Canadian Junior National Team and played for the Langley Blaze, a traveling club located near Vancouver, British Columbia.
In high school, Morgan played right field and center field, though the Mariners project him as a corner outfielder.
Smoak progressing slowly from sore left quad
SEATTLE -- Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak (sore left quad) was out of the lineup but available as a late-inning defensive replacement Tuesday.
"He's probably 70, 75 percent," manager Lloyd McClendon said. "He's just not there. It's a quad that's been very frustrating for him. We'll see how he is tomorrow. We'll just keep trying to move forward."
When asked if Smoak could land on the disabled list, McClendon said he is "day to day."
"We'll see what happens," McClendon said.
Smoak did some light agility drills, ran the bases and took batting practice Tuesday. He said the quad began bothering him a week and a half ago, though he initially thought it was just soreness. To rest the injury, he served primarily as a late-inning defensive replacement on Seattle's last road trip.
"I was thinking it was going to go away but it never really did," he said. "That's when we knew we should probably back off a little bit."
Smoak maintained he's getting better. McClendon agreed -- to an extent.
"I would say he's progressing some," McClendon said. "Obviously, [it's] not at the pace we would like."
Since May 1, Smoak has posted a .180/.264/.320 slash line with four home runs and 14 RBIs. In 2014, he's hitting .208 with seven homers, 12 doubles and 29 RBIs.
• Right-handed pitcher Taijuan Walker made progress Monday in his third rehab start with Triple-A Tacoma, allowing two runs on four hits and a walk in five innings, but McClendon said he won't rush the organization's top prospect back to the Major Leagues.
Walker, 21, was officially taken off the 15-day disabled and optioned to the Rainiers on Tuesday.
• Right fielder Michael Saunders was back in the lineup and hitting seventh after being sidelined the last few days with a sore right shoulder.
Adam Lewis is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.