Very, very discouraging loss on Monday. You can list all the reasons why, so next paragraph...
All pitchers get KO'ed. If an SP gets 20 QS out of 32, he's among the league leaders. Also, HQ runs a count of DISaster starts, KO'ed before the 5th inning or horrible H / K / BB / HR in a lucky start. It runs a good 25%.
Also, you might recall that James Paxton got blasted in his first start, 4 IP and 6 ER via 4 BB and 2 HR. Felix gave up 19 runs last start. Everybody but Leake is running 1-for-2 on surviving the first few innings :- )
A few Dr. D detractors look at a series like the one on Marco and smile wryly, that Dr. D is just one of those guys who tries to sell snow to Eskimos. And that's, um, cool. A small % of users also just don't buy into Marc-O yet. But most SSI Denizens are not panicking about one bad start.
I s'pose nobody but myself and Bat are going to buy into Marc-O until he has 5-6 Quality Starts racked up for us. You get the sense that's true of Servais his ownself. That's a huge plus for Dr. D. :- ) A big part of the energy of SSI, is Dr. D (and others) making outrageous projections, and starting up a (friendly) flame war. That's one of my fave things about SSI.
Marco-O is a solid left hand pitcher. That's what it says here.
Had a WEIRD start last game, throwing pitches that missed by 3-4 feet, the very first such game I recall in his entire career. As we've said, a DL visit is very often presaged by this kind of bizarre loss of command.
But it's just 1 start of 2 games, and we all need April to get a feel for Felix, Marco, and everybody other than Zeus and Mike Leake. Dr. D will be watching the ball-strike count in the first two innings.
A pure rookie who has 18 IP with a 7 K, 6 BB ratio (!) and a 9.50 ERA. Another game that draws up beautifully on paper for the M's, so I suppose we're looking at a 13-1 loss.
More seriously, baseball is like that. How many times!, over the years, we've seen the stars align perfectly for a W, and then a debacle occur like yesterday. Happens all. the. time. Anyway, the odds in Vegas are even-steven for this game, Pick 'Em.
Anyway, F/X says that Skoglund throws a 60-20-20 mix of 92 MPH fastball, power slider and slow curve. A classic arsenal, badly executed so far this year. Again we will watch for early ball-strike counts, and hope for "mushy" offspeed stuff from the rook as opposed to what Jakob Junis was throwing.
Dr. D is sad to see the LH matchup against John Kruk. However, Kruk did collect another hit yesterday, and an HBP, so he's batting .294 with a .368 OBP in his early 19 plate appearances. His plate discipline has dropped off to merely "Superb," with a 22% - 70% split on chasing and on swinging at strikes. 30-66 is average.
Not much else goin' on that the erudite Denizen is not already aware of. However, Dr. D did peruse the starting lineup and ... missed Ryon Healy quite a bit. We've got Heredia #6 (?!) in this supposedly deeeeep lineup with Marjama and Motter filling out the bottom. It looks like half a lineup, as opposed to having Maniger - Healy/Kruk - Zuumball at the bottom. Well, hang on there, Dr. D. It actually IS half a lineup, isn't it.
We keep talking about the M's honorable 4-4 start against playoff oppo, but the hope graphs swings wildly back and forth each game. Hope and fun will be abundant if the M's are 5-4 tomorrow, doom and gloom omnipresent if the M's lose. So, oddly, it's a big game. Which is cool: the first week has given us a lot of tense, exciting baseball.
Kruk is in the dugout, batting DH, with Motter at first. Does that mean Krukker missed a ball or two in the M's internal stats? Hmmmmmm 'Bach is somehow -0.5 runs already in UZR. John Dewan has him at 0.0 plays vs. average, exactly even steven, with a mere 3 outs made, which makes more sense. I haven't seen much hit at him in any case yet, much less several marginal balls he's missed to go -0.5 runs.
Another puzzle, this one minor. Why would UZR have him at -0.5 in this situation, Matty? With only a few chances, and Dewan recording no balls by him in his area?