We know Ichiro will be in right field, Franklin Gutierrez in center, and the albatross Milton Bradley in left. Whether Seattle goes with four or five outfielders is unknown, but it appears that Michael Saunders and Ryan Langerhans are battling for the fourth spot.
Saunders and Langerhans both hit from the left side as does Gabe Gross, but Gross is 2 for 26, hitting .077 so we can say goodbye to Gabe.
Saunders is hitting .240 with one triple; Langerhans is batting .367 with three doubles, a triple, and a homer.
If they continue to hit that way for the next ten days, Langerhans will make the team. He has been a bust since coming to Seattle in a trade with Washington for Mike Morse in 2009.
Morse has won a starting job with the Nationals because of the way he has been hitting-another Mariner who has slipped out of our system to star in another city like Adam Jones and Shin-Soo Choo. Just another reason why the Mariners have struggled, that being young players leaving to star elsewhere.
Admittedly I am not a Langerhans fan. Last season in 107 at bats he struck out 51 times, a ******** 47.7% of his at bats walking back to the dugout without contact. He hit .196. A new swing, a new stance, a new everything was needed.
Langerhans worked in the off-season on a new swing and based on early returns it seems to be working. But his average may be misleading. Has he gotten hits off major league pitchers or minor leaguers? Spring numbers can be misleading.
I think the jury is out on Langerhans. His spring numbers could be fool’s gold. What he does in April and May will be the test. That is unless Saunders pushes him out of the picture. But at this point Langerhans looks to be on target for a roster spot.