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Moreland moves up to No. 2 spot

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SEATTLE -- David Murphy was out of the lineup on on Friday night with Mariners left-hander Joe Saunders on the mound, so Mitch Moreland was moved up into the second spot in the lineup. Manager Ron Washington had moved Murphy into the No. 2 spot when Ian Kinsler went on the disabled list.

Murphy is 5-for-18 with two home runs in five games as the No. 2 hitter and is hitting .314 with four home runs and 11 RBIs in his last 17 games. Washington said he thinks moving Murphy up in the order helped him come out of his slump.

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"Just gets him involved in the game [quicker]," Washington said. "He's not waiting around. When you're struggling and waiting around, it can weigh on your mind. Now we're getting him in the game quicker rather than him having to wait around for the second or third inning to get an at-bat."

Moreland doesn't need such help. He went into Friday's game hitting .343 (23-for-67) with five doubles, seven home runs and 14 RBIs over his past 19 games. But Washington didn't want his two left-handed hitters -- Moreland and Pierzynski -- hitting back to back in the lower half of the order. Pierzynski was hitting sixth.

Washington said Moreland will be back to the lower half of the order on Saturday with right-hander Felix Hernandez on the mound.

"If he goes 4-for-4 there tonight, he won't be [hitting second] tomorrow," Washington said.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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