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Notes: Hernandez ready for debut

Notes: Hernandez ready for debut

DETROIT -- When asked Tuesday if he had felt ready to pitch in the big leagues right out of Spring Training, 19-year-old Felix Hernandez paused a moment before affirming, "Yep."

He laughed, as did the reporters surrounding him in the visitors' dugout at Comerica Park, where, on Thursday, Seattle's heralded pitching prospect will become the first teenager to start a Major League game since 1991. Before being called up, Hernandez had a 9-4 record with a 2.25 ERA at Triple-A Tacoma, registering 100 strikeouts in 88 innings.

"It's not that he's bored, but he can make mistakes at Triple-A and get away with them," general manager Bill Bavasi said. "That translates into meaning he needs a new challenge."

Hernandez indicated he's recovered from the right shoulder bursitis that kept him out for a month this season. "My shoulder feels good," Hernandez said. "My arm is strong."

Roster movement: After making a flurry of deals before the trading deadline, Seattle's roster juggling continued on Tuesday.

"You had to be agile," manager Mike Hargrove said. "Very rarely does it hit all at once like this."

The Mariners placed Jeff Nelson on the bereavement list for the Detroit series, as the reliever remained in Seattle to attend to his father-in-law's death. Nelson's expected to rejoin the team in Chicago for a three-game series against the White Sox.

Seattle promoted right-hander Jeff Harris from Tacoma to fill in for Nelson. Harris made his Major League debut Tuesday night, relieving starter Jorge Campillo, a fellow Triple-A callup who left the game with a right elbow strain after only one inning.

In a separate move, right-handed pitcher Masao Kida will take Ryan Franklin's roster spot while he serves a 10-day suspension for violating Major League Baseball's drug policy.

Moyer update: Lower back stiffness will sideline Jamie Moyer for the Detroit series. Moyer described the move as precautionary and indicated his condition will be evaluated on a daily basis.

"Why force yourself to do something stupid and have a major setback?" Moyer said.

Coming up: Seattle's Gil Meche (10-7, 4.70 ERA) opposes the Tigers' Mike Maroth (8-11, 4.57 ERA) Wednesday night in a 4:05 p.m. PT start at Comerica Park, in the second game of a three-game set.

Patrick Mooney is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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