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IcebreakerXNo formatting in the shoutbox, unfortunately.1 hour 47 min ago
TunerUmm... where did my formatting go?2 hours 44 min ago
TunerThe power of our arms Triggered opponent’s alarms Once requiring all comers to yield The strength of our team The hope of our dream Has been dashed to the turf of the field Once corded and burly Now not quite the same It’s quite clear that something’s amiss Now their jerseys swing freely And the absence is plain It’s strange now to view them like this Golden arms fallen off There they lie on the mound Guaranteeing our massive defeat Our pitchers once vaunted Fat meatballs did toss And Bluejays from platters did eat2 hours 45 min ago
IcebreakerXRIP 20143 hours 23 min ago
rick82And Leone comes in and, in gratitude for all Felix did to get us to this point, inflates his ERA with his own lousy performance. It'll probably cost him his Cy Young.3 hours 34 min ago
DaddyOSayonara. Felix joins the rest of the Mariners' SP's and melts down in a must win game.3 hours 44 min ago
rick82Et Tu, Felix?3 hours 53 min ago
moethedogMy goodness, how I'm learning to just cringe when Morales' name is in the lineup.4 hours 16 min ago
Bat571Bawcom, not Brady - brain cramp.4 hours 38 min ago
Bat571For the bullpen, there's so much spaghetti coming up through the minors (Brazis, Colvin, Guaipe, Brady, Hunter, Shackleford,...) that the regression candidate is Rodney - everyone else is replaceable with someone with success at AA or higher. And if Rodney regresses, would Maurer be ready to step in, or Farquhar step back in? I'd say the signs for maintaining a killer bullpen are QUITE good. We're talking something like 16 to make 7 or 8!4 hours 40 min ago
rick82But then, I'm on record predicting a fallback next season, and good, good times in 2016 (fighting the Astros for the division, probably). 2016 should be the year the big three and Elias become the rotation we all are hoping for. Ackley's walk season (where's that rickroll...) right? Zunino is hitting his stride as a major leaguer and has a solid backup who hits, a four to make one additional corner bat. So who knows? I think I'll focus on tonight, tomorrow has enough cares of its own :-)5 hours 5 min ago
Bat571So, the chance of a decline and the chance of maintaing or getting better are not quite even, but still not bad - the scenario of a significant "career year" nexus followed by collapse is really not where the Ms are at - except for Felix and Young's comeback, one can argue that the Ms as individuals *underperformed* their capabilities, while yet overperforming as a team. So, judicious (i.e., not merely incremental or gambling on revitalizing a guy like Hart) improvement at one or two spots could result in the pitching being ~maintained, while the offense picks up. Overall, I'd say your research combined with what we know (young team, no real nexus of overperformance) gives me some hope. In the 90s, the M's kinda went every other year until the peak in 2000/2001 - '96 and '98 weren't real good years - but as a team, things did improve, but injuries and other events took their toll. But a run like that with a better peak (in banner terms) is entirely realistic.5 hours 28 min ago
rick82Regression has already taken place, so I don't think we will regress based on whatever ERA+ we end the season with. I think ERA+ could stabilize somewhere between 110-115 next season, with tremendous upside possible. I also think we have a strong defensive ballclub and it will be stronger next season because the best defensive players are young (Miller, Zunino, Seager, Ackley) or solid vets (Cano, Jackson, Saunders). I'm happy to trade some defense for offense, but if we just fix the DH position we will go a LONG WAY to getting those extra runs. Thing is, NOBODY in our offense is playing over their heads. But how many runs does an average (not great, not even good, but average) DH give an offense? If everyone kicks in a little more (Miller, Ackley, Zunino, LoMo, Saunders) how much will that add? Jackson plays well in his walk season - how much better is that than what we got from the first half alone at CF?5 hours 35 min ago
SABR MattOut of 182 teams from 1980-2013 that produced at least a 110 ERA+, 56 did no worse than 5 points worse in the following season (call that maintaining skill or getting better) - 16 of those were the Braves. Yes, really. LOL So...excluding the Braves, who are an historical oddity of epic pitcher development prowess, you have about a 23% chance to be somewhere in the ballpark of as good as you were the previous year. The mean loss for this sample was 7.6 ERA+ points with a standard deviation of 9.2 points. The biggest collapses came from teams like 2013 Texas (worst injury record of all time), 2005 CHW (spectacular defense and some good luck reverted to average defense and some bad luck), 2003 ARI (122 to 92! - team collapsed in general, no defensive support, absolutely no pitching depth), 2002 ATL (they bounced right back in 2004), 1990 Oakland (lost the entire top of their rotation)...those scenarios seem unlikely for us...the extreme collapses skew the standard deviation some7 hours 18 min ago
Bat571If, somehow, the Ms could get Van Slyke and/or Kemp from the Dodgers, or sign Tomas and maybe Rios, it would change things ... If Kemp/Tomas could play RF part-time and DH part-time, and Van Slyke/Rios the same, plus backing up 1B, the holes would be filled, as long as the Miller/Ackley/Saunders/Jackson/Morrison group can keep playing good defense and then hit like they've shown in spurts that they can. Rotating guys through DH (if they can handle it) makes more sense with the type of players the Ms now have than having a set DH -- BUT, they have to find a #4 hitter and a #6-7 that lengthens the lineup and makes the other guys pitch to Cano and Seager. I'm not sure how many other guys are out there the M's might trade for or sign to bridge until the next wave of Wilson/Peterson/Jackson/Lara/O'Neill/et al are ready, but Hart/Denorfia/Morales/Smoak aren't going to do it, it seems.8 hours 30 min ago
DaddyOI agree, we don't need to build an impregnable juggernaut. We just have to make sound adds at two positions (RF and DH) and hope (1) Ackley is truly fixed, (2) our existing SP's remain healthy and productive despite some decline, (3) ditto number 2 but for the bullpen, and (4) Miller and Taylor do indeed hold down the shortstop position.8 hours 43 min ago
DaddyOThere remain obvious holes in the lineup: DH and RF. The in-house solutions all have question marks. If Ackley starts poorly next season we will have to add LF. If we don't add a major piece at 1B, Logan Morrison may or may not prove to be an acceptable answer there. Catcher is covered, but I hope we haven't damaged Zunino as an overall hitter by throwing him into a full-time role so quickly. 2B-3B are covered just fine, thank you. SS looks okay to me, though it could I suppose prove problematic. I don't count on Michael Saunders; I'd be happy to add a bona fide RF'er this offseason, preferably a RHB, then try AGAIN to upgrade DH and hope for once we actually get it right.8 hours 44 min ago
Bat571Matt, how many of the teams that didn't regress replaced 2/5 of the rotation? That was something else the Braves seemed to do each year - Liebrandt = 'Kuma? Is Paxton our Avery or our Glavine/Smoltz? The addition of Paxton/Walker instead of Young/Whoever may mean the regression overall is not as bad as history might predict. If the Ms can BUILD on the Felix/'Kuma/Paxton/Walker base, with Hultzen, if he can recover his mojo, stepping in for 'Kuma as he declines, and Elias becoming either a staple, or one of a line of decent #5's that Jack finds wherever ... regression is logic, but not truth!8 hours 44 min ago
DaddyOI think the M's are farther away from becoming a perennial playoff team than we might wish. But at least they appear to have risen from the ranks of the bottom feeders. Bullet-proof starting pitching is suddenly looking, well, less than bullet-proof. Vulnerable. The bullpen looks like it is well-stocked, but bullpens are volatile things. Definitely we should expect the pitching to regress somewhat next year.8 hours 45 min ago
SABR MattIn fact, most of the teams I found that did not regress in Y+1 were great defenses.9 hours 1 min ago