Eric Wedge’s offseason lineup switches just didn’t work out.
A month after pulling Chone Figgins out of the leadoff spot and the lineup altogether, Wedge has decided to go back to Ichiro Suzuki at the top of the order.
Suzuki hit third and started in right field in each of the Mariners’ first 52 games before taking a seat Wednesday. He also had Thursday’s off day to rest up.
Suzuki was a pretty obvious bust as a No. 3 hitter, even though this year’s .271/.305/.367 line is a slight improvement over where he finished last year. He drove in just 17 runs in the 52 games. The Mariners and the Phillies, with 15, are the only teams to get fewer than 20 RBI out of their No. 3 hitters to date.
The incredible thing is that the Mariners have managed a pretty respectable offense anyway. After Wednesday’s outburst, they’re averaging 4.11 runs per game, good for 18th in the majors. They were dead last in the majors at 3.17 runs per game in 2010 and 3.43 last year.