Benoit day to day with sore shoulder

'I'm trying to be smart and not jeopardize the whole season,' Mariners reliever says

Benoit day to day with sore shoulder

SEATTLE -- Veteran right-handed reliever Joaquin Benoit is "day to day" with some soreness in his throwing shoulder, Mariners manager Scott Servais said on Monday, which is why the 38-year-old setup man didn't pitch in his expected eighth-inning role in Sunday's 2-1 loss to the A's.

With Benoit sidelined, Servais went with Joel Peralta in the eighth after Felix Hernandez staked Seattle to a 1-0 lead, but Peralta gave up a solo homer to Marcus Semien and the Mariners wound up losing in the 10th.

Mariners depth chart

Benoit, acquired by trade from the Padres to bolster the back of Seattle's bullpen, threw scoreless a inning on Wednesday in Texas and Friday in the series opener against the A's with no hits, three walks and three strikeouts. He said some soreness from Spring Training had continued to linger, however, so he'll likely rest the next few days.

"It's basically the same stuff," he said. "I've been trying to pitch through it, but I'm trying to be smart and not jeopardize the whole season trying to be a man. We'll see how everything goes the next two to three days. I think I'm playing catch [Tuesday], so everything is so far, so good."

Any concern for the 14-year Major League veteran?

"I'm too old to be concerned," Benoit said with a smile. "It's not something I really worry about. I'm just going to work on it and get it better."

Worth noting

• Lefty reliever Charlie Furbush played catch up to 75 feet on Monday for the first time since undergoing a series of five injections in his Regenokine therapy program to help his sore shoulder. Furbush said it was a good initial step in his return. He hasn't pitched since July 7 due to a slight rotator cuff tear and isn't likely to return before late May or June.

"I wasn't trying to do anything crazy my first day out there," said Furbush. "But as we get going, I'll definitely be ramping it up and looking forward to seeing what I've got. It's a good step. Day one, complete success, and we'll do it again tomorrow."

• Servais said he'll keep his starters in order even with an off-day on Thursday before starting a nine-game road trip through New York, Cleveland and Anaheim. That means Nathan Karns will open the series in Yankee Stadium on Friday, followed by Hernandez on Saturday and Hisashi Iwakuma on Sunday.

"I'm a big believer in just keeping the guys in [turn], and if they pick up an extra day, good for them," Servais said. "It's a long season and an extra day really isn't going to hurt."

Greg Johns is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.