Buhner to be Mariners' rep at Draft
Outfielder was fan favorite and among franchise's greats
SEATTLE -- Before Ichiro Suzuki made the smooth transition from the Pacific League to the American League in 2001, the Mariners' right-field position was in the capable hands of Jay Buhner for 13 years.The "Bone Yard" became a party place in the right field bleachers at the Kingdome. Fans shaved their heads so they could look like the clean-shaven Buhner.
He was a hoot during his long and productive career with the Mariners, and he'll step to the plate again during the First-Year Player Draft next month as a representative for the Mariners, who will make the second overall pick.MLB.com will offer live coverage and analysis of the entire First-Year Player Draft on June 9-11. The MLB Network will broadcast the first round at 3 p.m. PT on June 9 from its Studio 42 in Secaucus, N.J., and those 32 selections also will be simulcast live on MLB.com.
Beginning with the 33rd pick, up-to-the-minute on-air coverage from the remaining rounds will shift exclusively to MLB.com/Live, where host Vinny Micucci will be joined by MLB.com Draft expert Jonathan Mayo and Major League Scouting Bureau director Frank Marcos.
Once the first night is done, the Draft will continue with rounds 4-30, via conference call from MLB Headquarters in New York, at noon on Wednesday, June 10. Rounds 31-50 will be on Thursday, June 11, starting at 11:30 a.m.Buhner, now 45 years old, still lives in Issaquah, Wash., and is one of three former players in the Mariners Hall of Fame, along with Alvin Davis and Edgar Martinez. He was acquired from the Yankees midway through the 1988 season, and the trade was so one-sided in Seattle's favor that it became a memorable scene during a "Seinfeld" episode several years later. Buhner hit 310 home runs, drove in 965 runs and became one of the best leaders in the clubhouse in Mariners history. He retired at the end of the 2001 season and still ranks in the top 10 in several club offensive categories, including games (third), hits (fourth), home runs (third), extra-base hits (third), at-bats (fourth), doubles (third), RBIs (third), walks (second), runs (fourth), triples (seventh), total bases (third) and slugging percentage (fifth).
Jim Street is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.