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Lookout Linkage, 3/6/14

Today's set of links about the Mariners and stories from around the league.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

We're trying out a few semi-regular feature. Several times a week, we'll take a look at things that are happening with the team, news from around the league, and other interesting articles around the blogosphere. Let us know what you think in the comments.

  • To say today is a big day for Taijuan Walker is an understatement. He'll try to play catch today, and if there are no setbacks, he can resume his regular throwing program, trying to get ready for an April return. Lloyd McClendon previously admitted that he'll probably start the year on the DL regardless.
  • The Mariners optioned 13 players to minor league camp, including Robinson Cano's cousin Burt Reynolds, who ends his short but sweet Mariners season with a 1.000 batting average. We got everything we asked for.  Danny Hultzen is headed back to the Tacoma camp to rehab some more, and Julio Morban was optioned to Jackson, which should give you some idea of where he'll begin his season.
  • Jon Heyman is reporting that the White Sox are getting some calls on Alejandro De Aza and Dayan Viciedo, as both are fighting for the left field position. It's fair to wonder if the Mariners are one of the teams calling. Though neither would appear to be a clear and measurable upgrade over Michael Saunders, Viciedo is right-handed.
  • While the Yankees seem to have some interest in Nick Franklin for their shortstop job, they're also interested in trying to resurrect the career of Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks. It's almost as if they don't believe Brian Roberts is the answer.
  • True Blue LA profiles Chone Figgins. Enjoy!
  • Ken Griffey Jr. gave a tremendously awkward and forced interview on Sportscenter yesterday while doing the rounds for Upper Deck's 25th anniversary. Linda Cohn handled it like a pro, but Junior is aloof at best. Cringeworthy.
  • Bryce Harper was photographed looking jacked out of his mind, but on closer inspection was carrying two boxes of Girl Scout cookies. Ok.
  • The Royals version of Justin Smoak (just ooooooonnnnne more year, guys) might need Tommy John surgery. Luke Hochevar's UCL is ailing.
  • Grant Brisbee decided to help out Fox with their Keys to the Game segment. Oh god delicious orange slices
  • Brian Wilson most definitely DID open up Tuesday's game against the Mariners with a knuckleball.
  • Ian Kinsler ripped Rangers GM Jon Daniels, calling him a "sleazeball" and that he hoped the Rangers went 0-162. The audio was finally tracked down, so you can hear it in context.  Not a good look, Ian.
  • Safeco Joe is a Texas Ranger, and he'll make $500k, up to $1.5 million. Safeco Joe becoming Arlington Joe. This could be tremendously fun to watch, or he'll normalize back to his peripherals and become a reliable #4 starter again oh god dammit Logan
  • At Fangraphs, Dave Cameron investigated the cost of a win this offseason, and found it to be around $6 million.
  • South Side Sox takes a look at Michael Jordan's baseball career, 20 years later.
  • The Blue Jays signed Frank Viola's son to a minor league deal. Viola is now a knuckleballer after multiple injuries forced him out of the game. He hasn't pitched in a minor league games since 2010, and previous to that he hadn't pitched since 2007.
  • Michael Pineda will make his spring training debut on Friday.
  • Finally, Beyond the Box Score investigates runs saved by infield shifts.