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Seattle Mariners

Mariners start spring training; Lopez tried at third base

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(Photo: Seattle Mariners) (Photo: Seattle Mariners)

The Seattle Mariners hit the field as a full team for the first time Tuesday to prepare for their first exhibition game on March 3.

A grand total of 30 pitchers, seven catchers and 25 position players took the field in Peoria, Ariz.  Among the veterans were several new faces to this year's team, including Chone Figgins, Milton Bradley, Casey Kotchman and Ryan Garko.   Figgins, in a surprise move, was taking ground balls at second base where Jose Lopez has long played. Lopez was being worked out at third base.

"It's the start of spring training.  The pitchers and catchers are here, but to have the position players come in - you finally feel like a team," said skipper Don Wakamatsu.

"It's good, man, just to see that everyone is capable of getting on the field," added Figgins. "That's a good start, because that means that everybody is healthy to start off with.  There's going to be some soreness here and there, but everybody's on the field.  I think that's a good start."

Pitcher Cliff Lee, who underwent offseason surgery, got in some light jogging and stretching. He's scheduled for his first bullpen session of spring training on Wednesday.

All-Star outfielder Ichiro Suzuki greeted teammates with hugs and handshakes and appeared to be happy to be in spring training as a Mariner.  He was also the target of jokes from Ken Griffey Jr.  Suzuki, playing his 10th season in Seattle said he's very comfortable in the M's clubhouse.

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