ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – The three catwalks that ring Tropicana Field at various heights occasionally come into play during games. A handful of Seattle Mariners could not resist investigating them Tuesday.
Former Rays catcher John Jaso hooked teammates Lucas Luetge, Tom Wilhelmsen, Steve Delabar, Charlie Furbursh and Casper Wells up with a Tampa Bay employee who knew how to reach them.
Let Wilhelmsen explain the pregame climb:
“We went up six floors in the elevators, then another 30 rows in the stands, a 12-foot ladder and then about 120 feet of stairs to reach the highest catwalk,” Wilhelmsen said. “It was 420 feet high.”
Once there, Wilhelmsen, Furbush and Delabar walked a full catwalk lap, taking photos of the field with the cameras in their cell phones.
Luetge and Wells?
They stood near the exit.
“Hey, I’m in the lineup tonight,” Wells deadpanned. “You can always get another reliever. I wasn’t going out there.”
“He said that? That’s cold,” Furbush said.
“It was really hot up that high, so I guess heat must rise,” Wilhelmsen said. “Hear that, kids? Heat rises.”
The relievers wanted to drop baseballs from the catwalk but thought about it too late – not until they were up there.
“Poor planning,” Delabar acknowledged.
Afterward, someone asked manager Eric Wedge if he’d like to make the climb.
“Zero interest,” he said, looking up. “I mean, none.”
CARP REJOINS TEAM
As expected, outfielder/first baseman/designated hitter Mike Carp arrived at the ballpark after flying about six hours from Tucson, Ariz., to join the team.
Recalled from Tacoma, where he’d been on a rehabilitation assignment, Carp took some of the suspense out of what the Mariners might do Tuesday by tweeting before he hopped a plane that he was coming up.
“I’ve been working real hard, dealing with the frustration of being hurt, and I’m ready to do whatever they ask of me,” Carp said.
In 13 games with the Rainiers, Carp batted .137 with four RBI. More important, he played the outfield and first base as he rehabbed a right shoulder sprained while playing in Japan.
Carp joined the team as catcher Miguel Olivo was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a groin strain.
“He’s had a long day, we’re playing a left-handed starter so he got the night off,” Wedge said. “He’ll get at-bats in a number of ways.”
Olivo will stay with the team and return to Seattle with the Mariners after a Thursday day game, then be fully examined by team physicians.
Catcher Jesus Montero became the fifth rookie in franchise history to record at least 13 RBI in April – joining Alvin Davis (17), Jim Maier (16), Danny Tartabull (16), and Juan Bernhardt (13). … With 2,458 career hits, Ichiro Suzuki is two behind Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith, who is 102nd on the all-time list. … Add Wilhelmsen: He began the night with the second-most innings pitched (16) of any American League reliever this season. The leader is the Yankees’ David Phelps at 172/3 innings.
Seattle and the Rays plays a 4:07 p.m. (PDT) game that will be televised on Root Sports. Probable starting pitchers: Seattle’s Blake Beavan (1-2, 3.60 ERA) vs. James Shields (4-0, 3.31).firstname.lastname@example.org blog.thenewstribune.com/mariners Twitter: @LarryLaRue