Dee Gordon and Mitch Haniger will be the first two batters of the Mariners’ season. (Getty)
The Seattle Mariners’ first lineup of the 2019 Major League Baseball season is here.
It’s been a long offseason, so let’s get right to it.
Dee Gordon, 2B
Mitch Haniger, CF
Jay Bruce, 1B
Edwin Encarnación, DH
Domingo Santana, LF
Omar Narváez, C
Ryon Healy, 3B
Tim Beckham, SS
Marco Gonzales, LHP
It sure has a different look than a season ago. Only four players remain from the Mariners’ 2018 Opening Day lineup, and none of them are playing the same position they did last year.
• Mitch Haniger is in center field instead of right as the Mariners make due with Mallex Smith still working his way back from an arm injury.
• Dee Gordon is back at his customary second base following last year’s experiment in the outfield.
• Ryon Healy will play third base instead of first due to Kyle Seager opening the year on the injured list while he recovers from hand surgery.
• Ichiro, who was in left field to begin the 2018 season, moves to right with Haniger in center. And to be fair, it really helps with the whole coming-full-circle thing as he begins his 27th pro baseball season playing the position he’s most known for.
Also notable is three-time All-Star Jay Bruce hitting third after a strong spring. The 32-year-old former Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians and New York Mets star has hit 20 or more home runs in nine of his 11 MLB seasons, but he is coming off the worst year of his career in which he hampered by injuries, posting a .223/.310./.370 slash line and nine homers in 94 games.
Veteran slugger Edwin Encarnación, an offseason acquisition from Cleveland, is in the cleanup spot as he begins the year looking for his eighth straight season of 30 or more homers. Following him in the order is Domingo Santana, who Seattle picked up in a trade with Milwaukee and has appeared this spring to be primed to bounce back to the form of his breakout 2017 season.
On the mound is Marco Gonzales, sporting a new No. 7 on the back of his uniform (he was previously No. 32, but he wore 7 in college at Gonzaga). This is the first career Opening Day start for the 26-year-old left-hander, ending a Mariners-record streak of 10 straight Opening Day starts by Félix Hernández.
Here’s what the Oakland A’s, who will be the home team in the two-game series, will look like in the Tokyo Dome on Wednesday.
Ramón Laureano, CF
Matt Chapman, 3B
Stephen Piscotty, RF
Khris Davis, DH
Chad Pinder, LF
Matt Olson, 1B
Jurickson Profar, 2B
Marcus Semien, SS
Nick Hundley, C
Mike Fiers, RHP
Coverage of Mariners-Athletics begins on 710 ESPN Seattle at 1:30 a.m. with the pregame show, with first pitch set for 2:35 a.m. Streaming is available on 710Sports.com and the 710 ESPN Seattle app, but only within our terrestrial radio range in western Washington due to MLB restrictions.
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