Seattle Mariners: A Sign That Dustin Ackley Is on His Way

Alex CarsonCorrespondent IIIJune 15, 2011

PEORIA, AZ - MARCH 04:  Dustin Ackley #13 of the Seattle Mariners runs to first base during the spring training game against the Cincinnati Reds at Peoria Stadium on March 4, 2011 in Peoria, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The great Larry Stone of the Seattle Times reports via twitter that Adam Kennedy is working on grounders at third today.

The writing is pretty obvious on the wall here: Dustin Ackley will arrive soon, and the team will give Kennedy some reps at third to keep his bat in the lineup as much as possible.

Kennedy has played 90 games at the hot corner in his career—eight last season in Washington and 82 the previous season in Oakland. As you probably are aware, defense is hard to evaluate and defense in small samples is even harder to evaluate. For what it's worth, his UZR at third in those 90 games is -10.0.

Since we’re doing some small sample seeking, Chone Figgins is -1.2 this season after 17.8 and 17.9 seasons respectively in 2008 and 2009.

I suspect Kennedy will get one or two starts a week at third, along with one at second and one at first so long as his bat stays productive. He’s obviously not part of the long-term future, but he’s got to be in the lineup semi-regularly with the team contending.

Ackley is still hot down in Tacoma. As Dave Cameron of U.S.S. Mariner notes, it's not the super-two business keeping Ackley down, but rather the roster logjam it will create if Chone Figgins and Kennedy are both hitting.

Of course, the team would be wise to bring Ackley up and let all that stuff sort itself out. Hopefully this is a sign that they're close to doing just that.