SEATTLE -- Injured Mariners reliever Shawn Kelley threw a 40-pitch bullpen session Saturday, and his post-workout assessment bodes well for his recovery from inflammation in his right elbow, which has kept him on the disabled list since June 16.
He called his bullpen work "phenomenal," but he stopped short of saying he was 100 percent. Manager Don Wakamatsu said Kelley will throw another session Tuesday, and if that goes well, Kelley expects a simulated game and rehab assignment.
"I won't go that far [saying he's fully healthy]," Kelley said. "Just because I feel great in the bullpen doesn't mean I'm game-ready, but it's definitely right where I need to be to get there. I couldn't be happier with how I felt today."
Kelley pointed to last season as a reason to be cautious. He collapsed on the mound with an oblique injury on May 5 and stayed on the disabled list until July 2. No matter how good he feels in practice or even in Minor League outings, Kelley said the true test for his recovery won't come until he pitches next for the Mariners.
"It's even another level when you're here, you've got fans in the seats, and every game means a lot," he said. "It's your career. It's what you've worked for. There's that next level of intensity there that I don't think you can simulate."
Mariners moving on from dugout fracas
SEATTLE -- The Mariners held a team meeting Saturday to discuss their dugout scuffle during Friday night's loss to the Red Sox, but other than that, there wasn't much fallout from the dustup, which was caught on television cameras in the middle of the fifth inning.
The incident started after manager Don Wakamatsu pulled Chone Figgins from the game for a lack of hustle. Figgins disagreed, and the ensuing conflict ended with several players shoving and restraining each other.
On Saturday, Figgins was back in his usual places in the lineup: playing second base and batting second behind Ichiro Suzuki.
Figgins, Wakamatsu and general manager Jack Zduriencik sat down Saturday to clear the air, and the team had a meeting afterward. The clubhouse was closed to reporters for 25 minutes, but Wakamatsu said the talk wasn't that long.
"It was a five-minute meeting, it wasn't a 30-minute meeting. Times got kind of messed up a little bit," he said. "We just touched on some things that happened last night, obviously, and also touched on some things like accountability and coming together as a club."
Figgins didn't speak before Saturday's game, but he said after the Mariners' 5-1 victory, in which he notched an RBI double, that he didn't have his thoughts together regarding the incident and that he would address it if and when he's ready.
When asked if he was on the same page with Wakamatsu, he said, "Thats hard to say. The same page is winning for me."
He added that he wasn't surprised to see his name on the lineup card.
"I'm always going to play," he said. "There's nobody in this clubhouse that can stop me from going out and competing every day. No matter what the situation is. I have emotions because that's how I play. Regardless of what situation comes up, I'm going to be out there to play and I'm going to show my emotions."
"We've had our discussions and our talks today," Zduriencik said. "It's behind us, and we're here to play baseball. That's it, and I don't have much more to say about it."
Figgins had been benched after left fielder Michael Saunders overthrew his cutoff man in the fifth inning and Figgins didn't move to back up the play. Boston's Mike Cameron advanced to third on the play.
"No one wants to come out of a ballgame or be put in that situation," Wakamatsu said. "Whether it's Chone or anybody else, it's never an easy situation, but it shows you a little bit about how much we care down here. There are certain situations you handle during the season that aren't public. It happened to be public last night."
Pitching prospect impresses Seattle GM
SEATTLE -- While the Mariners faced the Red Sox on Friday, general manager Jack Zduriencik took a trip to watch his prized pitching prospect, 21-year-old right-hander Michael Pineda, with Triple-A Tacoma.
And Pineda put on a good show for the boss.
The Rainiers fell, 2-1, and Pineda took the loss, but he allowed just one run and one hit in five innings, striking out 11 of the 18 batters he faced.
With the Mariners well out of the American League West race, there wouldn't be much risk to calling him up for an appearance in the big leagues, but Zduriencik stressed that any decisions will be made based on what's best for Pineda's future, which he called "very bright."
"Every individual player has his own timeclock," Zduriencik said. "I do think Michael Pineda has a chance to do a lot of special things in this game -- again, should he stay healthy and things go like they look like they're going. He's a very talented kid. We're going to enjoy watching this guy."
Dustin Ackley, the club's No. 2 overall selection in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, was also in uniform for the Rainiers at second base. He went 1-for-3 and in nine games since being called up from Double-A West Tennessee, he's hitting .286 with three doubles and one home run.
Ackley is still adjusting to his new position at second base -- a switch made after Seattle drafted him -- and Zduriencik is happy with his progress.
"He didn't sign a pro contract until Aug. 17 of a year ago," Zduriencik said. "Then by the time he reported into Arizona, switched positions and all that, that's an awful lot for a kid to be sitting in Triple-A right now. But we would not have moved him had we not thought he needed this challenge for the last two months, and we think he's ready for it."
Mike McCall is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.