The Mariners Find Their Ballclub - about 145 games late
M's 10, stRangers 4


All right, so this is the baseball team you wanted to see, Jerry.  Just a leeeeeetle bit late, huh.  Let's hope not tooooo late.



So the M's season is coming down to one question:  can the Twinkies find it in themselves to lose 3 in a row?  Or, preferably, 5-of-6 or somesuch?  

They're playing well right now, so good on them.  Then again, the Mainframe would be a lot more shrill about a 3-game deficit if there were six or seven games left - or if it were the Yankee$ we were chasing.  Three games back, 17 left, chasing a weak team, that's not too tragic.  (It's not that Dr. D couldn't write Eeyore shtick if he wanted to; baseball is for fun, so he tends to select those real parts of it that he enjoys.  Lucky you.)

Let's see, how many times has this 2017 Twins team lost 3-4 in a row ... , 

  • x4 from April 16-20
  • x3 from May 14-18
  • x4 from May 28-31
  • x4 from June 16-18
  • x3 from June 29 - July 1
  • x3 from July 8-14
  • x4 from July 23-26
  • x3 from July 29 - Aug 1
  • x3 from Sept 3-5

So, nine times this year but only once the last month-and-a-half.  Oookkaaayyyy!  They're due!


The Mariners have beaten their Wild Card rivals Texas by consecutive scores of 8-1, 10-3 and 10-4 which we can safely assume to be the first time this year they've strung a set of +6 run margins.  Their offense is hot up-and-down the lineup.  The three-game win streak has gained them excellent turf against everybody BUT Minnesota:

  • Minny +8
  • Sea +1
  • LAA +2
  • KC -2
  • Tex -2
  • Bal -3
  • Rays -3

And what recourse do you have against me for ordering them that way?  Absolutely none.  The M's will win the final series of the season, so they're up half a game.   DO! SOMETHIN'     DIDN' THINK SO



Kroogs came on and said this was the 2014-15 Felix.

Finishing all his pitches with great snap and extension.  Getting the late movement bite on the fastball.  Getting bite on everything.  Commanding.  Doing anything he wanted with the ball.  From my seat I did not at all disagree.  But whether or not Felix was a Cy Young pitcher?  The fact remains that [the guy on the mound last night] >>> [Sonny Gray].

Have often wondered if Felix' career path would track with Verlander's:  a mushy spot in the middle where the mileage caught up, followed by a flubber type rebound once he got a little rest via the DL.  Also, to a certain extent Clemens had this at age 30-32 at the 2,000 IP mark, a few seasons of 140-190 innings with a few 105 ERA's.  I'll bet you that most power pitchers who throw 4,000 innings have a little down period like Felix and Verlander had.

If Felix were a top-10 pitcher in 2018 and 2019 it shouldn't shock you.  Thursday, he looked like that again.  Not just a good night, but he looked real tough again and like he belonged there.


Leaving us at King Felix-Zeus-Mike Leake(TM), and then we have Erasmo "Cut Fastball" Ramirez with 6 QS runnin', and Andrew Moore is throwing BB's.  

That Ariel Miranda guy lost his spot on the bus, if you didn't hear, as did Marc-O.  Andrew Albers cannot miss the catcher's mitt if he tries, and that makes him a long man on this staff.  Too bad this team didn't jell three weeks ago, neh?



Couple-three weeks ago you looked, and it seemed like it was Nelson Cruz with ten 100 hitters.  Now it's Nelson Cruz and ten 100 hitters, six of which are 105-120 hitters.   ... bwahahaha Mike Zunino has hit 120; do you be LEEVE this shtick?

Yonder Alonso came up with the bases loaded in a 2-1 game was it at the time?  And just rrriiiiiiiifled a ball into the corner like off a pitching coach.  Cleaned 'em off.  That guy's OPS+ is 130 on the year, and if the Twinkies fade any, it's going to wind up a trade-deadline coup.

Mitch Haniger is the MVP candidate from April.  Jean "Sudden" Segura is taking that arm swing and smoking low liners up the middle and down the 3B line.  Robinson Cano has suddenly gotten Yankee-playoff intense.  Jarrod Dyson, our only glove-first player, is done for the year.  Kyle Seager is the actual Kyle Seager, and then some.  This crew is ballin' out.  Oh for a chance to see Boomstick in a playoff series!



So let's just see how they do against Houston.  No excuses this time, boys; this is the Seattle Mariner ballclub that you wished you could take into a playoff series.  Well then, let's see you play the Astros base-for-base.

Win two and lose one or the other way around, fine; that's baseball.  Bu I want to see three games and I want to see the Mariners trade bases even steven.

Go get 'em,

Dr D




I wish there were seventeen...but it's only 74-73 they're only just now putting their rotation together...They played find the spaghetti all year and they found the three extra noodles they needed. On the plus side, the entire "hey! There it is!" rotation will be back in 2017, plus Otani, right Dipoto? :) He could hang out with WBC-san, who we'll drop from club option but re-sign to be a reliever on a make-good contract.

Alas, those two extra games I wish we had really hurt our chances in 2017


Fangraphs' playoff odds are now 71% Twins, 17% Angels, 7% Mariners, rest to the Field.

That said, DaddyO and a few other Denizens are "woke" to the fact that 15 days to watch your grandkids are a lot more than 0.  :- )  In a way I'm just thrilled that at SOME point of 2017 we were able to get a look at this ballclub the way we all suspected it could be.

Will be a long winter.  If this team goes 3-3 against HOU and CLE and 7-2 against everybody else then it forces Minnesota to play a solid .500.  Will enjoy watching this team play.


He's second behind Cruz in OPS. At .838 for a good defensive catcher. Wow. Who'd a thunk. Future is suddenly much brighter.


I remember early in the season writing Zunino off as a bust. He, uh, has written me back so to speak with his bat. Haven't been able to see many games lately (the ladies of the house have a right to watch Blacklist, don't they?). 

If you are wondering what BWIW means, it is "Boy Was I Wrong."

It's a shame I didn't see a lick of one of the Mariners' best series of the season.

We probably took too long to gel. The sweep at the hands of Houston REALLY hurt. But...(what Yogi Berra said).


Mariners fans have had SOOOOO many high-upside players do that electric-sputter bit and do it for five years before washing out.  To watch somebody do that and then see them "flash on" at the end is almost tooooo strange to watch.

This guy looks as if he's going to SLG .500 in Safeco.  He has more raw power than all but a very few major league players.

The Other Billy Zoom's picture

I screamed Zoonino, trade him, for anything"  .... ice cream I scream.

Wrong as wrong could be.

When he came back from Tak ommmmm ahhhh, after a very short stay, I remained xdreamily dubious.

Well, he really has changed something.

He hasn't gone back to his old pattern of ebb and flow.

Brosius and Edgar might have been making trips to Tacoma, but, it now seems something finally clicked in his brain.

Or  maybe it was a long bus ride.

And it is solid offense, and even walks, that stoke my homerism.

Lucroy was a top off season priority for me ... not any more.



Because they ALL have very deep injustices they went through, and they all re-focus on the happy times.  In part so as to remain part of the fabric of the circuit.

But Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong, you knew all the way through that something was very, VERY wrong.  Like James said, this team was only ever here because of a lawsuit, and then it was only here because of a "gift to the region" from a Japanese tycoon who hates baseball.  It was a systemic Fail.  It was a grotesque Frankenstein arm, stitched on to a Seattle body that did not really want it, and that negative Karma haunted us for 40 years.

Gillick and Sweet Lou managed to override the horrible karma for a few years.  


The takeaway is that, only just now, that systemic warp core may have been swapped out.


to have such wondrous assets at his disposal (RJ, Jr., A-Rod, 'Gar, Buhner) simultaneously and still fail to get over the hump.  I say that not with a single iota of frustration with Lou; I say it to support Lou's sentiment.  Things were simply not done well enough in the M's front office for them to be competitive, and the deficiency persisted for DECADES.

Howard Lincoln (& Chuck Armstrong) was the consistent presence throughout all of it.  He didn't want to win nearly as badly as the rest of the team runners in baseball, and it showed on the field.


Sing along to the tune of Dandy Don Meredith, RIP (circa. 1970's MNF)

Seriously, we hoped for "meaningful September ball games" and they delivered, too little too late, unfortunately.  It's been fun, but I'm out.  I'll continue to follow,  just not as intently.  My overall take: disappointment.  Could have, should have done better this season, but obviously injuries plus some underperformance and age-related decline weighed heavily. Should be an active off-season.  Surely this front office/ownership recognizes the deficiencies,  hopefully. 


I recommend reading em all. Here's one on how the Ms will fare three years from now: 

From a third scout: "Their farm system is a mess. Jerry inherited a mess, and it’s still a mess.

"All of those prospect lists you see from Baseball America and others, they’re far from perfect. But they normally identify the top guys. You might disagree with the order, but the top guys are generally on there some place.

"You don’t see many Seattle guys on those lists. If that doesn’t change, and soon, it’s going to catch up with them. You win because of stars and, generally, you have to develop stars.

"Want to trade for an impact guy like Houston did to get (Justin) Verlander? Fine, you’ve got to have top prospects who are close to big-league ready. You see any of those at (Triple-A) Tacoma?

"Sure, you can grab someone now and again in free agency, but look around. Most of the game’s top players are on the team that developed them. You don’t win titles by swapping out the 20th-to-25th guys on your roster."


The M's better hope that:

(1) Haniger and Gamel (and perhaps even Heredia) fulfill our hopes and establish themselves as the outfield of a future playoff team. 

(2) They are able to selling off substantial veteran pieces (Cruz?) before they collapse and lose the kind of value that would return some significant young talent.

(3) World history comes to a dramatic end before the problems outlined by the third scout come home to roost. 

Organizational churn does not equal broad and deep improvement.

Imagine the mood of Mariners fans if DiPoto's regime leaves them in the near term just short of the playoffs and in the long term bereft of young talent. If you ARE going to go through some lean years, to make it worthwhile you doggone better make the playoffs and once there do something. Since Lou's departure the M's have steadfastly refused to accept, like the Astros did, the necessity of some lean years to lay the foundation for some prosperous ones. Not only that but they pretty much squandered their opportunity to assemble a substantial cache of young talent when they whiffed on most of their high draft picks. Perennial contention at the level of the best organizations may be a wonderful aspiration, but to achieve that you need to be, um, among the best organizations.

My only hope is that before long things don't look as bleak on the farm as they do right now. 


I know Howard and Chuck are gone, but Mariner DNA states that you never trade a valuable asset while it is still valuable. You either undervalue it and throw it away, or you overvalue it and hang onto it until it dies miserably in your arms. Cano probably isn't the only thing you sell on, though - if you want return, you move Paxton as well and you start over, for maybe the first time.  Cano and Felix are harder to move, but every year they roll this team out there and every year it falls short because they insist on messing with the last 5 roster spots instead of fixing problems.

Like you explained, this is a terrible no-mans land to be aimed at. The Royals went from 1986 to 2013 without making the playoffs while looking a lot like this.  They didn't spend what the Ms are spending to be a non-playoff team, though. Losing 4 in a row when you could have closed the gap on the Twins entirely? That's the Mariner Way.

Mariner plusses: Zunino and Haniger are in their primes and have the 2nd and 3rd highest offensive marks on the team.  If Haniger is the Real Deal and Zunino is moving from the Miguel Olivo plane of existence to something resembling the Gary Carter one, the Mariners might have some nice blocks to put next to Seager.  The problem is they traded away young players and their thin farm is running out of immediate help.  If Kyle Lewis and Evan White both work out they're still 2 years away at best, as is Neidert as a MOR arm. Sam Carlson is more like 4 years out.

Because the farm isn't ready for the turnover the Mariners need to effect, I feel like they're taking the last swing with Felix and Cruz next year, which means more long-term assets likely leaving rather than accumulating. I think Lewis has greatness in him, but honestly so what?  No team is better at squandering greatness than the Mariners, so even if he survives and thrives Seattle will just add him to the list of great players they have let down.

They're making my fandom very hard.  I've been away most of the year because they've made me bitter, and I don't watch sports to be bitter or to make others bitter. I focus on basketball and football more, because it's hard to ride-or-die with a team that waterboards you for 6 months of the year and disappoints you for the other 6. If Rogers Hornsby just stared out the window and waited for Spring, then I'm staring at my computer monitor waiting for the Mariners to be more than a half-shambling Frankenstein corpse.

At least Hornsby knew when the winter of his discontent would end.  They make it tough, DaddyO - they make it really tough.  Best of luck to em over the last 14, but honestly I'm just keeping tabs on their sad minor leagues and waiting for the next GM, the next coach, and the next set of stars they can waste.  Ohtani would be perfect for that.

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