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Mariners settle on Brendan Ryan at shortstop and Jack Wilson at second base

Mar 22, 2011, 1:17 PM EDT

brendan-ryan-and-jack-wilson-mariners-spring AP

When the Mariners acquired Brendan Ryan from the Cardinals in mid-December they initially hinted that he’d be playing mostly second base, with Jack Wilson remaining at shortstop, but after evaluating them for the past few weeks manager Eric Wedge has decided to flip-flop the two infielders.

Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times reports that Ryan will play shortstop with Wilson at second base, although the infield picture figures to change again once top prospect Dustin Ackley is deemed ready for a call-up.

Ryan has graded out as one of the elite defensive shortstops in baseball, with Ultimate Zone Rating showing him as 11.4 runs above average per 150 games there. Wilson has a similarly strong defensive reputation, but at age 33 his range has slipped a bit and he’s unlikely to be better than Ryan. Of course, whether Wilson will thrive at second base after never playing an inning anywhere other than shortstop for his entire 10-year career is another question.

Either way, the Mariners figure to have one of the best-fielding and worst-hitting double-play duos in baseball.

  1. easports82 - Mar 22, 2011 at 1:54 PM

    Hope Wilson’s “offensive” production doesn’t suffer like Figgins’ last year…

  2. wickedworld123 - Mar 22, 2011 at 1:57 PM

    Well…say what you will about the Mariners (and they’re truly awful) but they are going to have legendary up the middle defense with Ryan, Wilson and Gutierrez this year.

  3. retief1954 - Mar 22, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Oh boy…. “best-fielding, worst-hitting”… same as we’ve been hearing for three or four years now. Hope we’re not in for another dreary season in Seattle.

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