Notes: Mariners' White glad to be home

Notes: Mariners' White glad to be home

PEORIA, Ariz. -- In the span of about 20 minutes on a cold December afternoon, right-hander Sean White traveled across the country. It was a homecoming of sorts, although he never left his Seattle area house that day.

White became a Rule 5 draftee last Dec. 7 when the Pittsburgh Pirates picked him out of the Atlanta Braves organization. He was later traded to the Seattle Mariners for cash considerations.

"It all happened pretty quick," White said before the Mariners took on the Oakland Athletics on Monday. "I got a call from the Pirates telling me they had drafted me. About 20 minutes later, I got a call saying 'hold on,' that there was a deal with the Mariners."

White, a native of Pullman and a lifelong resident of Washington, was coming home to play baseball. He played high school ball on Mercer Island and pitched for the University of Washington before the Braves made him their eighth-round draft pick in 2003.

"I definitely feel it's a great opportunity," said White, who has to remain with the Mariners all year or be offered back to the Braves. "I just hope I can continue to come out and work hard."

White is in the mix for a spot in Seattle's bullpen, and he's only helped his chances with a pair of solid performances. He threw two scoreless innings against the Chicago White Sox on Sunday and has allowed six hits (five in one appearance) and two runs in six innings. He also struck out two and walked one.

"I felt good [Sunday]," he said. "I'm starting to get my stuff down and my timing is coming back. The main thing is to work on consistency with my mechanics and location. I've got to go out and do the same things they're asking me to do, like pitching down and getting ahead of the hitters. I feel if I can do those things, I will be successful."

This is White's second big-league training camp, and like last year with the Braves, he's eager to learn more about his craft.

"I get a chance to work with some of the veterans and learn from them," White said. "I'm in a position where I need to prove myself. There are quite a few talented guys in camp."

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Being with the Mariners also meant he didn't have to travel very far for offseason workouts. He was able to use the facilities at Safeco Field, rain or shine. He felt he had his best offseason yet and came to camp ready to go.

He's not quite sure how he fits into the Mariners' grand design, but White said he'll adjust to anything.

"Most of my experience has been as a starter, but I am open to being anywhere," White said. "I have done some short relief, too, and it feels comfortable."

Now he hopes the Mariners feel comfortable with him.

Back in action: Jose Guillen was back in right field for the second consecutive day. He was limited to designated hitter duties in his first four games as he continues to recover from right elbow surgery.

"I haven't let one go yet," Guillen said of his throwing. "I have been taking infield and throwing from 180 feet."

Guillen hit into a double play in his first at-bat on Monday, then drilled a double in his next at-bat before leaving the game.

Soft tosses: Right-hander J.J. Putz, recovering from tightness in his right elbow, threw from 90 feet on Monday and will progress to long toss on Tuesday, followed by a bullpen session on Thursday. ... First baseman Richie Sexson snapped his 0-for-18 streak with an RBI single in the first inning. He later added his first home run, a solo shot against Chad Gaudin in the fifth. ... Right-hander Felix Hernandez continued the current stretch of stinginess among Mariners starters. He threw four shutout innings against the A's on Monday. Over the past eight games, the projected rotation of Hernandez, Miguel Batista, Horacio Ramirez, Jarrod Washburn and Jeff Weaver have allowed three runs in 25 innings for a 1.08 ERA, and have struck out 14 batters.

Up next: Washburn makes his third start on Tuesday when the Milwaukee Brewers visit Peoria. Washburn threw three shutout innings at the Kansas City Royals in his last outing, improving his spring numbers to one run, three hits, no walks and seven strikeouts in five innings. The Brewers will counter with their ace, righty Ben Sheets.

Rick Eymer is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.