With his batting average down to .252 thanks to a month-long, 13-for-87 (.149) slump Ichiro Suzuki is out of the Mariners’ lineup today for the first time since 2009.
That snaps a streak of 255 consecutive starts for Suzuki, which is the second-longest in baseball behind only Matt Kemp of the Dodgers with 268.
Carlos Peguero is starting in Suzuki’s place in right field, while Chone Figgins takes over the leadoff spot against Tigers right-hander Brad Penny.
Suzuki is obviously capable of getting very hot and boosting his numbers in a hurry, but Greg Johns of MLB.com notes that .252 is the lowest his batting average has ever been this deep into a season.
Free agent right-hander Trevor Cahill reportedly has a one-year deal in place with the Athletics, according to MLB.com’s Jane Lee. The exact terms have yet to be disclosed, and as the agreement is still pending a physical, it has not been formally announced by the club.
Cahill, 30, is coming off of a decent, albeit underwhelming year with the Padres and Royals. He kicked off the 2017 season with a 4-3 record in 11 starts for the Padres, then split his time between the rotation and bullpen after a midseason trade to the Royals. By the end of the year, the righty led the league with 16 wild pitches and had racked up a 4.93 ERA, 4.8 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 in 84 innings for the two teams.
The A’s found themselves in desperate need of rotation depth this week after Jharel Cotton announced he’d miss the 2018 season to undergo Tommy John surgery. Right now, the team is considering some combination of Andrew Triggs, Daniel Gossett, Daniel Mengden and Paul Blackburn for the back end of the rotation — a mix that seems unlikely to change in the last two weeks before Opening Day, as Lee points out that Cahill won’t be ready to shoulder a full workload by then. Instead, he’s expected to begin the year in the bullpen and work his way up to a starting role, where the A’s hope he’ll replicate the All-Star numbers he produced with them back in 2010.