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Seattle Mariners

Former football player is Mariners' best spring starter

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AP Sports Writer

PEORIA, Ariz. - Felix Hernandez. Cliff Lee. And ... Jason Vargas? The former high school quarterback who quit baseball power LSU after just one season then became a sort of power hitter at Long Beach State has been the best spring pitcher in Seattle's star-topped rotation.

He's about to seize a starting job, perhaps the No. 4 spot in the rotation.

The 27-year-old who had elbow and hip surgeries in 2007 and '08 just laughs at what everyone else sees as a near certainty. Vargas is the biggest standout among a staff of damaged and currently ineffective starters behind ace Felix Hernandez.  

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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