Peep Show

Updated: March 29, 2004, 9:15 AM ET
By Jim Baker

American League

Ellis
Ellis
Oakland Athletics: It was initially believed that second baseman Mark Ellis would miss two months with the labrum he tore after colliding with shortstop Bobby Crosby. Now it might be that he is going to miss the entire season. Our own Peter Gammons, quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle by Susan Slusser, says the damage was more serious than initially thought. Meanwhile, Crosby continues to sit out with a bruised quadriceps. Said general manager Billy Beane: "We don't know if Mark will miss six weeks or 12 weeks. We won't know a lot of things until he gets another MRI, but there are things we have to be aware of that could show up. It is his throwing arm, and we have to be cognizant of that, and as a GM, I have to mentally prepare for a worst-case scenario.'' The A's do have ex-Met Marco Scutaro on hand to fill in, although he's currently nursing a minor injury, as is Frank Menechino, another second base possibility.

Seattle Mariners: Prior to spring training, manager Bob Melvin discussed the possibility of moving Ichiro Suzuki out of the leadoff spot, the batting order position he has occupied since coming from Japan in 2001. In the end, he only tried it once, however, and Ichiro will not spend 2004 batting out of the three-hole. What is more, he seems to be exhibiting some real patience at the plate this spring. He has taken the first pitch in 35 of his 38 at bats in Arizona reports John McGrath of the Tacoma News Tribune. Regarding this trend, Melvin said, "Word is getting around. He's not going to swing at a first pitch that isn't a strike." Like the actor who "really wants to direct," Ichiro's dream is to pitch someday. While reserve players continue to see mound action in blowouts, Jose Canseco ruined that fantasy for stars, wrecking his arm in a worthless mop-up outing.

Jim Baker is an author at Baseball Prospectus and a frequent contributor to Page 2. You can e-mail Jim at bottlebat@gmail.com.

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