But on a Sunday morning, the Minute Maid Park visitors club was buzzing with chaos and uncertainty. New players were arriving, injury information on multiple players was pouring in and roster moves were made.
The biggest vortex of anxiety surrounded rookie quarterback Julio Rodriguez, who was injured in the back of his right hand as he swung 97mph from Rafael Monteiro in the eighth inning of Saturday night’s win over the Astros.
Earlier in the morning, Jerry DePoto, Mariners president of baseball operations, speaking in his weekly radio appearance on MLB Network Radio, told host Jim Bowden that an X-ray taken on Rodriguez’s right hand came back negative.
About an hour later, coach Scott Service announced that Rodriguez (a contusion to the right hand) and companion player Dylan Moore (back spasms) had been placed on the 10-day injury list.
The team called up Class AA Defender Jared Kielnik Tacoma and picked the minor league contract of Class AA Arkansas defensive player Jack Larsen to take his place on the roster. To make way for Larsen in the 40-man roster, left-handed bowler Anthony Mecevic was assigned the task.
Since the Sunday noon game was “Princess Day” in Minute Maid Park, the sound system was blowing the soundtrack from “Frozen” at such levels that Servais, whose sleep sounded like his previous night, could be counted in minutes, not hours, no You hear in his comments.
“I don’t feel like a princess today, that’s for sure,” he said. “We have a lot of excitement today, and obviously last night’s match facilitates that.”
Rodriguez took a break from therapy on his hand to speak to the pre-made media.
“Basically, I snow it a lot,” he said. “It’s just bruising. Fortunately, the X-rays were negative.”
Admittedly, Rodriguez was scared when he hit the court. He had flashbacks until April 12, 2019 when he hit his left hand with a pitch and had a hairline fracture that kept him out of the house for over a month.
“I’ve been in this situation before, and you always think that way,” he said. “Just knowing the X-ray was negative reassured me a little bit. It made me feel a little better about it.”
Rodriguez will likely have an MRI and more tests in the coming days to make sure nothing was missed in the initial X-ray.
“It’s frustrating,” he said. “I want to play. I wanted to be able to support the team and do my best for everyone.”
Along with Rodriguez and Moore, first All-Star player Ty France was out of the starting line-up due to left wrist soreness. He underwent an MRI early Sunday morning and the team was waiting for the results.
France rolled on his wrist on Monday as he dived on Cole Calhoun’s command line. He began to feel pain in his wrist at the twists and turns. After sitting out Wednesday’s game in Seattle, France returned to the squad and played well. But in his last game on Saturday night, he swung awkwardly in a change and was in palpable pain.
“We don’t have results from that,” Service said. “But as of now, we should know more here maybe in the next hour or so where he is. I hope it isn’t more serious than he might need for a day or two.”
As a guarantee of the roster’s move with France, player Jake Scheiner, who could play first or third base, joined the team in the taxi squad.
Companion player Sam Hagerty was at the club wearing a bandage over his eye. He had eight stitches after his racket hit him in a fit of rage after a failed sack attempt in the ninth inning.
He was not in the squad, but was available to play if needed.
“We try to do the best thing for our players and our team,” said Service. “With Julio and the wrist issue with Ty, they’re a lot more concerning. You don’t want rush guys back and then they struggle and they don’t feel well and you’ve been fighting that all year round. I think the biggest thing is to be kind of ahead of that, give them time to recover, And then when they come back they are 100 per cent and ready to go.”
This story will be updated.