Jaso leading off as Wedge shakes up lineup

Jaso leading off as Wedge shakes up lineup

Jaso leading off as Wedge shakes up lineup
SEATTLE -- Mariners manager Eric Wedge shook up his lineup for Wednesday's rubber match against the Tigers -- and it sure was unusual.

John Jaso became just the second catcher in club history to hit leadoff, joining Bob Stinson, who did it twice in 1978. This marks the 52nd time the former Rays player has led off.

"The only difference is my approach. When I get my first at-bat in the game, I want to gather information," Jaso said. "But the only thing that come into play is different situations and runners on base, like get them over kind of situations. But if those are there, it might make me want to swing at the first pitch a little bit more.

"When you're the leadoff hitter in the lineup, none of those situations are there, so you know beforehand you can be more selective. Doesn't mean that I won't swing at the first pitch I see. If the timing and everything is right, I will swing. But I know that that situation won't be there, so, if need be, I can gather more information about the pitcher."

Jaso entered Wednesday's game hitting .306 with one home run and seven RBIs this season. In 51 games leading off entering Wednesday, Jaso was hitting .262 with three home runs, 17 RBIs and 30 walks.

"He's over the plate, he gives himself a chance with every pitch, he has good hands, he doesn't get in a hurry up there and he trusts himself with two strikes," Wedge said.

Further lineup changes for the series finale included Kyle Seager moving from third base to second for regular leadoff hitter Dustin Ackley, who received a normal day off. Alex Liddi started at third for Seager, and Casper Wells and Chone Figgins started in left and center field, respectively.