A look at the New Mariners in 2004

Here's a look at each of the new faces that will be donning Mariner uniforms when Spring Training starts late next month.

- Rich Aurilia

2003: 505 AB, .277, 26 2B, 1 3B, 13 HR, 58 RBI, 2 SB

Riddled with injuries to his elbow and eyes over the past two seasons, Aurilia replaces Carlos Guillen as the team's starting shortstop in 2004 with a clean bill of health. He is a right-handed hitter who hits best when he's patient and avoids the temptation to pull the ball. Defensively, the 32-year-old has become less error-prone in his older years. While not having the range that Guillen does, Aurilia has a quick-release and an accurate arm that helps him compensate. He isn't a threat to steal but is a smart baserunner who rarely runs his team out of innings.



- Raul Ibanez

2003: 608 AB, .294, 33 2B, 5 3B, 18 HR, 90 RBI, 8 SB

Back with Seattle after three years in Kansas City where he blossomed into a bonified threat at the plate, Ibanez will be the team's every-day left fielder in 2004. The 31-year-old brings his beautiful looping left-handed swing back to Safeco Field, hoping to continue the success he found with the Royals. While struggling against lefties and soft-tossers, Ibanez will make pitchers pay when they throw a mistake and is an excellent fastball hitter. He is patient at the plate and a solid contact hitter who could see time at the No. 2 spot in the batting lineup. In the field, Ibanez runs suprisingly well but lacks a strong arm and top-notch instincts.



- Eddie Guardado

2003: 66 G, 65.1 IP, 3-5, 2.89 ERA, 41 S, 60 K, 14 BB

A 33-year-old lefty who will replace Arthur Rhodes in the bullpen, Guardado lacks an out pitch but has excellent control with all three of his pitches, a split-finger fastball, slider and curve. He is aggressive on the mound and keeps hitters off-balance by blending his pitches well and staying ahead in the count. He uses his splitter on right-handers and has found great success with it. Defensively, Guardado fields his position well despite his bulky build and is tough to steal on.



- Scott Spiezio

2003: 521 AB, .265, 36 2B, 7 3B, 16 HR, 83 RBI, 6 SB

At age 31, Spiezio comes to Seattle in the prime of his career looking to become the team's every-day third baseman. Replacing Jeff Cirillo, it will be difficult for him to do wrong at the hot corner. A switch-hitter, Speez is significantly better from the left side of the plate (.282 LH vs. .223 RH). He is patient, has some pop in the bat, and will steal on occasion as well. Defensively, he has decent range and an average arm, having originally come up as a second baseman in the Oakland farm system.



- Ramon Santiago

2003: 444 AB, .225, 18 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 29 RBI, 10 SB
A slap-hitter that comes to Seattle with little pop in the bat, Santiago had only 21 extra base hits in 444 at bats as a member of the Detroit Tigers in 2003. Where he figures to help the team out most is in the field, where he can play both shortstop and second base and take some pressure of utility man Willie Bloomquist as the backup at those positions. Santiago has above-average range, a very accurate arm and has impressed coaches and scouts with his ability to learn quickly. Formerly one of the Tigers' top prospects, he is only 24.



- Quinton McCracken

2003: 115 AB, .227, 5 2B, 2 3B, 0 HR, 18 RBI, 5 SB

Brought over from Arizona in return for Greg Colbrunn, McCracken is another switch-hitting reserve who is well-rounded enough to play any of the outfield positions. He is a good contact hitter who likes to bunt and spray the ball around the field, but contrary to popular belief he is not much of a threat on the basepaths. He stole only 10 bases in 552 at bats with the Diamondbacks over the past two seasons.



- Kevin Jarvis

2003: 16 G, 92.0 IP, 4-8, 5.87 ERA, 49 K, 32 BB

Jarvis comes to Seattle from San Diego as somewhat of a mystery. He's overpaid and doesn't have a defined role. At age 34, he can pitch in both the rotation and the bullpen, but it comes at a price. The right-hander has a 5.83 lifetime ERA in nine seasons with six different teams. On the mound, he is a quick worker who likes to stay down in the strike zone and let his defense do the work for him. He, like Guardado, holds runners on base well but isn't the polished defender that Everyday Eddie is.



- Wiki Gonzalez

2003: 65 AB, .200, 5 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 10 RBI, 0 SB

Wiki is a reserve catcher at best, a Triple-A catcher at worst and isn't currently on the team's 40-man roster. He came over in the Jeff Cirillo trade, but doesn't figure into the Mariners' long-term plans. Known for his defensive abilities, he will turn 30-years-old early in the regular season and will most likely spend the year with the Rainiers barring a release.



- Dave Hansen

2003: 135 AB, .244, 4 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 15 RBI, 1 SB

Long known as one of the best pinch-hitters in the game, Hansen's production took a dive last season with the Padres at the age of 34. While capable of playing both first base and the outifield in his younger years, on this Mariners team Hansen will likely see limited time in the field, and when he does it will almost surely be at first. Hansen adds a left-handed bat off the bench that the M's lacked last season when they had only John Mabry and switch-hitters Ben Davis and Mark McLemore in that role.

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