Mariners remove slumping Chone Figgins from lineup

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SEATTLE (AP) -- The Seattle Mariners have benched leadoff hitter Chone Figgins after the veteran's batting average plummeted to .189 after a recent slump.

Seattle manager Eric Wedge made the announcement before the Mariners opened a six-game homestand Friday night.

Figgins has never lived up to the $36 million, four-year deal he signed with the Mariners before the 2010 season. He was moved back into the leadoff role at the start of this season in the hopes that returning to his familiar spot in the batting order might spark his offensive production.

For a short time it did, as Figgins was hitting .260 on April 18. But in the following 12 games, Figgins had just five hits in 45 at-bats with three of those hits coming in one game.