Mariners left-hander Drew Smyly, scheduled to be the team’s No. 4 starter, Wednesday became the first player in franchise history to get scratched from a start due to a “soggy arm.” At least that’s the way manager Scott Servais described Smyly’s condition when he announced that Smyly won’t make his final Catcus League start Friday.
“He didn’t feel great coming out of his bullpen yesterday,” Servais told reporters Wednesday morning in Peoria, AZ., without going into specifics. “We need to get a feel for where he’s at. It’s (Smyly’s arm) just a little soggy.”
Pitching for the U.S. in the World Baseball Classic March 15, Smyly went 4.2 innings, giving up one unearned run on three hits with no walks and eight strikeouts. Smyly’s high-energy performance will undoubtedly draw scrutiny regarding a potential cause for the arm fatigue.
Servais said that Smyly would meet team orthopedist Dr. Edward Khalfayan, and that the plan is to is to shut down the lefty for the next few days.
“At this time of spring you are always concerned because we are getting close to opening day,” Servais added. “But I don’t want to rush to any judgments. We’ll wait and see what the doc says.”
Smyly suffered a labrum tear in May 2015 and rehabbed the shoulder back to shape instead of undergoing surgery.
Smyly is slated to make his first start of the regular season April 6 at Houston. If he is unable to go, a likely replacement is LHP Ariel Miranda, optioned to the minors earlier this week.
“We’ve got some depth,” Servais said. “I’m just waiting to see what I hear.”
The Mariners begin regular-season play Monday in Houston at 5:10 p.m., PT. Following the four-game series at Minute Maid Park, Seattle will play three in Anaheim against the Angels ahead of their home opener April 10 against the Astros.