Doc, I really think the key to our offense right now lies in the hands of Morrison and Romero. Saunders is a nice player but he plays much better offensively in CF than he does in RF. If Romero can be a factor (hey, he doesn't have to be Stanton or Frank Robinson) and hit 20+ homers and OPS in the .770+ range AND Morrison looks like the Morrison of a couple of years ago at DH THEN we're rockin' and rollin'. Hart? I'm not laying any money down on him yet.
SSI mosh pit! :: crowd goes wild ::
I was gonna do a little analysis piece, trying to figure out if Felix has been good on Opening Day. :-} Divish's article will serve just fine. We'll slam-dance him over into Spectator and see who wins the collision.
He points out that Felix is 4-0, 1.33 all time on Opening Day. His piece also reminds us that the Mariners and Felix didn't have to agree a 7-year deal.
Career, he has pitched 35 (!!) games against the Angels, a full 236 innings. Bill James loves stat splits that equal an actual full season. Here are his Angel stats.
The Angels and Rangers are a relative problem for Felix, because they isolate him down to the knee-high fastballs and the 90-MPH changeup. Perhaps Mike Zunino will make an adjustment. ... Of course, the Chicago Bulls might be a "relative" problem for LeBron James. It doesn't mean you bet on LeBron to score 11 points with five turnovers.
Jered Weaver's splits against the Mariners are considerably better than Felix' against the Angels'. Ouch. Man, I never been so glad to have seven left hand bats against that pesky rodent doobie-huffing sidearmer. (Although, for reasons entirely beyond my perception, Weaver has had a reverse platoon split the last two years. Maybe it's a cutter.)
Lemme make friends with all y'all again. Here is a Yahoo ranking of all 30 Opening Day starters. It opens with a glory shot of Felix, and you'll want to check Doobie Bro's ranking too.
The M's don't need Game One, any more than you need game one in the World Series.
They've got 7 games on the road, LAA-Oak. They win 4 of the 7 on the road, any four, that's a roaring start to the season. Three wins is fine, too. But - win game one of seven, and you only need three or four, and ... Beautiful.
Jim-Bro' put a whale of a lot of elbow grease into this one for yer. As you know, he lives to serve.
Good read. Two lead-ins for him:
- Guess who had the better third baseman? Seattle or Tampa? Well ...
- The 2013 Mariners had a lousy everyday lineup, but it was because of four sucking chest wounds.
It ain't so hard to improve a 45/100 catcher up to 75/100; it's much easier than improving a 95/100 catcher up to 120.
The wounds were at -- :: drumroll :: 2B, SS, C, and RF. At which positions the Mariners could conceivably field players who are not sucking chest wounds.
Probably not everybody is aware that IF a team did get eight 100'ish bats, along with one star, then it would have one of the best offenses in the league. IF the Mariners got EVERYBODY chipping in around Cano, it wouldn't make their offense "better." It would make their offense "scary good." Just clarifying that.
Taijuan Walker will only need to miss one (1) start. Slap me silly and call me Sharpay.
Lloyd McClendon is on so much of a roll that I don't put it past him to move Roenis to the bullpen after that one start. Well, I almost don't put it past him. (And code dictates two starts for Elias, under normal circumstances.)
Kjurkian was on ESPN, intoning grimly that the Mariners see Taijuan as every blinkin' inch the next Felix Hernandez.
Look, kiddies. Let's be frank, shall we? The Mariners are about three (3) good decisions, and one (1) Stefen Romero platoon rampage, away from being the buzz of the AL West.
Also, McClendon sits Corey Hart against Jered "Death to Flying Mariners" Weaver. On Opening Day. I got your MLB(TM) Veteran Entitlement right here, baby.
I. Love. This. Man. No, really. I'm quite taken with his decisionmaking, early on.
Not sure I see how you read him missing 1 start?
1. He threw 4 IP last start, 93-95 MPH, reportedly felt great.
2. He throws 5 IP + next start.
3. How much did Chris Young have to throw, before they figured "Well, he can go five-and-dive, if he has to."
Or not :- )
Saunders should get a LOT of Almonte's time in CF if you ax me.
For my team, I doubt Romero would ever miss a start vs LHP's. The dude is chill. Hard to imagine him hitting LHP's worse than Saunders or Seager. And easy to imagine him slugging .500 or even .600 against straight lefty menus.
Your comment about the topspin specialist LoMo ... I see that his platoon splits are fairly wide against RHP's. His EYE is like 0.70 against righties, 0.30 against lefties. He should SLG a healthy .450 if he's platooned, anyway. That's in Safeco, considering the topspin swing, and it wouldn't even consider the idea of growth for him. I
In part-time play, it's not farfetched to ask him to replace Kendrys Morales, more or less. Kendrys hit .275/.327/.453 for us against RHP's last year.
As a platoon guy, in Safeco, with his talent, there are things to like with LoMo - if you just want somebody to chip in. Agreed.
Which would be...at most...two starts and could be one with creative rotation management. :) So...yeah...one or two starts...no biggie. And as long as he keeps feeling well after throwing...he should be right back in there after, at most, two starts.
Relaying that he could be back next turn, although he probably won't.
Otherwise, as Matty sez. When a sportswriter is saying "mid-April," that means mid-April at the latest.
Won't surprise anybody if they hold him out extra turns. Does anybody know how his Super Two, or arb, or FA statuses are affected?
Weaver is more than a little bit irritating. He makes up for 86 mph right handed slop by throwing like a girl. And it works. And he looks just like his brother Jeff. And, Fangraphs continually forecasts doom for Weaver but it still hasn't happened. This is because everything about Weaver is lame except for his ERA.
Cano is the only Mariner with a respectable Jared Weaver line. He has hit .375 against Weaver lifetime. The supporting cast needs to make some good contact on this guy, and is largely untested against him. Felix only needs a three spot.
You must let the ball get deep to you, and be able to go oppo against his slop. Not many can wait that long versus 86 MPH... but just maybe with Cano's influence, the young guns can pummel him.
Since he was up for all of September, he already has a month of creditable time - not for rookie eligibility, but for pay purposes, yeah. He'd be into mid-to-late May for years of control, and well into June for super-two. I suspect super-two is going to be renegotiated, so who really knows what his status will be when the time comes. Anyway, there is no incentive for the Ms to hold him out until the third or fourth week in May considering how many starts that would be.