Saturday, May 27, 2006


AP photo -- Ann Heisenfelt

[initial partial post]

In 25 words or less: Bases loaded, nobody out...SO WHAT?! Fire Lincoln!

This one featured Jamie Moyer going up against Boof Bonser. Moyer came in with a 7-14 road record over the past three seasons. The Mariners hoped to win, not just to win, but to not be mired in a three-game losing streak, which would happen with a loss in this game. Things looked so promising after that four-game winning streak, didn't they? Four-game winning streaks aren't enough. Winning five of six doesn't cut it. This team needs to go on a tear where they win 14 of 15 games before I start taking them seriously. Do I think they're ill-equipped to go on such a tear? Absolutely. The Mariners have to prove everyone wrong before anyone can be convinced that something's going right.

Ichiro chopped an 0-2 pitch to first on a PFP play, and he was barely out, though it wasn't called that way. Willie Bloomquist lined the second pitch into center for a single, moving Ichiro to second. Raul Ibañez drilled a 1-2 single through the right side to load the bases with nobody out. Richie Sexson whiffed on a belt-high 2-2 slider. Carl Everett whiffed on a high 2-2 fastball. Adrian Beltre was mowed down on an 0-2 fastball up and away. Bonser threw 22 pitches.

Lew Ford grounded to second. Luis Castillo lined the first pitch into right for a single, and Ichiro nicely shorthopped it so it didn't bounce through for a double. Joe Mauer was ahead 2-0 and punched a full-count letter-high breaking ball into rightfield for a single, pushing Castillo to third. Torii Hunter popped the second pitch to fairly deep right, and Castillo ran on Ichiro and lived to tell about it, since Castillo got his feet in and the throw short-hopped Johjima, who couldn't block the plate in time. Mauer went to second on the just-late throw.
Michael Cuddyer had the hitters' counts before cranking the first pitch just foul off the wall just outside the leftfield foul pole. Cuddyer ended up flying out to Betancourt in shallow left. Moyer threw 23 pitches.

Kenji Johjima drove the 0-2 pitch off the track in rightcenter for a double. Jeremy Reed flew out to the track in left to a backpedaling Ford, but Johjima tagged and went to third. Yuniesky Betancourt rolled over an outside pitch to third, and Johjima got to the third-base bag just in time to avoid Batista's tag, but Batista had more than enough time to throw to first. Ichiro walked on a full-count pitch inside and in the dirt. Bloomquist was up 2-0 and Bonser got a visit from the pitching coach. Bloomquist had both hitters' counts before splitting his bat on a 3-1 pitch for a single into rightfield, scoring Johjima and moving Ichiro to second.
Ibañez was ahead 2-0 and blasted a full-count fastball well over the wall in rightcenter, off the facing of the upper deck.
Sexson bounced the second pitch to third. Bonser threw 32 pitches and had 54 through two.

Justin Morneau roped the first pitch, but right to Ichiro at the baggie in right. Rondell White was down 0-2 and took a 1-2 change over the inside corner. Tony Batista lined the second pitch near the leftfield line and to the wall for a double. Juan Castro poked a single into center on an outside pitch, scoring Batista.
Ford slapped the first pitch right at Ichiro. Moyer threw 11 pitches and had 34 through two.

Everett worked a 1-2 count full before rolling out to second. Beltre bounced the second pitch to the left side, where it bounced off Batista's glove and Castro didn't quite make the throw over in time as Beltre reached. Johjima grounded to short on a full count, and with Beltre running on the pitch, the only out was recorded at first. Reed bounced the second pitch to short. Bonser threw 17 pitches and had 71 through three.

Castillo fought off a ball up and in and wrapped it into the leftfield corner for a double. Mauer whiffed over a 1-2 fastball inside. Hunter one-hopped the first pitch off the track and over the leftfield wall, scoring Castillo.
Cuddyer did Hunter one better and lined the second pitch over the leftfield wall.
Morneau popped high to Bloomquist in shallow right on an 0-2 pitch. White flew out to left on a full count on a sinking fly ball. Moyer threw 20 pitches and had 54 through three.

Betancourt flew out to Morneau near the mound on a 2-2 pitch. Ichiro whiffed badly on an 0-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Bloomquist failed to check his swing on a 1-2 breaking ball away in the dirt. Bonser threw 13 pitches and had 84 through four.

Batista popped the second pitch to Betancourt in foul ground near the leftfield line. Castro hit a line drive toward fairly deep right that was caught by a leaping Ichiro. Ford was ahead 2-0 before grounding hard to third. Moyer threw nine pitches and had 63 through four.

Ibañez was down 0-2 and later rolled a 2-2 pitch to the hole on the right side (4-1 putout). Sexson ripped a single past the reach of a diving Batista and into leftfield. Everett rolled to second for a 4-6-3 double play. Bonser threw 13 pitches and had 97 through five.

Bonser's line: 5 innings, 4 runs, 8 hits, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts, 97 pitches (65 strikes)

Castillo grounded hard to third, and Beltre had it go off his wrist and toward the third-base bag, but planted his right foot with momentum going backwards to throw in time to first. Mauer chopped a pitch over the mound and into center for a single. Hunter grounded to second for what could have been a 4-6-3 double play, except Betancourt had trouble getting the ball out of the glove, though he had a long way to run to get to second due to playing Batista to pull. Cuddyer had the hitters' counts before one-hopping a full-count pitch over the wall in center, which kept Hunter at third though he was going wuth the pitch. Morneau grounded the first pitch up the middle to Betancourt, who threw in time to first. Moyer threw 14 pitches and had 77 through five.

Carlos Silva came in for Bonser. Beltre flew out right to Hunter in center. Johjima bounced the second pitch to short. Reed worked an 0-2 count full before grounding hard right back to the mound. Silva threw 13 pitches.

White was down 0-2 before tapping a 2-2 broken-bat grounder to Moyer. Batista grounded a 2-2 pitch hard to short, where Betancourt made the quick stop to his knees and got up to throw out Batista. Castro lined the second pitch about eight rows into the seats over the leftfield wall.
Ford popped the second pitch to right. Moyer threw 17 pitches and had 94 through six.

Betancourt shot a single through the right side. Ichiro fell behind 0-2 whiffed badly over a 1-2 pitch in the dirt. Bloomquist chopped the first pitch into the hole on the left side, and Castro ranged over to grab it and throw quickly to get the force at second. Ibañez got ahead 3-1 before chopping the full-count pitch high to Silva near the first-base line, who tagged Ibañez as he ran past. Silva threw 14 pitches and had 27 total.

Silva's line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 27 pitches (17 strikes)

Castillo doubled down the leftfield line and to the wall on a full-count pitch. Mauer grounded up the middle, where Bloomquist ranged over to his backhand side to get it and leaped to throw to first but airmailed Sexson, scoring Castillo. Mauer went to second as a result.

Julio Mateo came in for Moyer. Hunter worked an 0-2 count full before flying out to Ichiro in deep rightcenter, but it was more than deep enough to move Mauer to third. Cuddyer dumped a fly into center that was caught by a sliding Reed, but that took enough time to score Mauer.
Morneau flew out high to Ibañez in shallow leftcenter on the second pitch. Mateo threw 11 pitches.

Moyer's line: 6 innings, 8 runs (7 earned), 11 hits, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 104 pitches (68 strikes)
Mateo's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 11 pitches (6 strikes)

Jesse Crain came in for Silva. Sexson stuck a 3-1 pitch down the leftfield line for a double. Everett worked a 1-2 count for a walk, moving Sexson to second. Crain got a visit from his pitching coach. Beltre bumped a 1-2 pitch through the right side for a single (!!!!!) to load the bases.

Juan Rincon came in for Crain. Johjima grounded to second, where Castillo ran down Beltre for the tag and threw to first to get Johjima out, but Everett was caught napping off of third, and Morneau threw over to get him. That's a f*@!ing triple play. I hate this team. Rincon threw one pitch.

Crain's line: 0 innings, 1 run, 2 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 16 pitches (8 strikes)

Sean Green and his freshly-shaven head came in for Mateo. White fell behind 0-2 and chopped a 2-2 pitch high off the mound, where Green got to it and threw to first, nearly pulling Sexson off the bag. Batista fell behind 0-2 but lined a 2-2 pitch to left, where Ibañez made a dive and was just short of the ball and it rolled to the wall for a double. Castro had the hitters' counts before singling the 3-1 pitch over Betancourt and into center, moving Batista to third. Ford singled up the middle to score Batista and move Castro to third.
Castillo lined right to Bloomquist at second, who threw to first to double off Ford. Green threw 22 pitches.

Green's line: 1 inning, 1 run, 3 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 22 pitches (14 strikes)

Reed flew out to Ford near the bullpen mounds outside the leftfield foul line. Betancourt worked a 1-2 count full and singled into center. Ichiro was down 0-2 and chopped a 2-2 pitch to the left side that hopped over Batista and was picked up by Castro, who had no play as Betancourt went to second. Bloomquist popped a 1-2 pitch to Hunter in center as the runners held. Ibañez took an 0-2 pitch in the dirt that got away from Mauer behind the plate, and Betancourt moved to third on the wild pitch. Ibañez ended up taking a 1-2 curve over the inside corner under his arms.

Rincon's line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 2 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 27 pitches (19 strikes)

Gameball: Richie Sexson.
Six Mariners had two-hit games, but we'll focus on the tall guy, who went 2-for-4 with a double. He hasn't homered since the first game of the Baltimore series about a week ago, but he's still warmed up a slight bit lately. He's got a little four-game hit streak and has hit safely in five of his last six games. In the streak, he's 6-for-14 with three doubles and strangely his only three RBIs in the streak were in the third game of the Baltimore series. He's walked once and struck out four times in that span. If you want to do the four of five games thing, he's hitting 7-for-22 in that span with a homer and seven RBIs. Four of those were on a grand slam to open that Baltimore series. In all, the four-game hit streak has bumped him from .198 to a .215 season average. Sickly, he's now hitting .217 in May, four points better than his April clip. The hit column in his game log has a bunch of scattered goose eggs, though this mini-streak lately has been the best he's consistently been hitting since the middle of April, when he had an eight-game hitting streak.

Goat: Jamie Moyer.
This is the second time in three starts that Moyer has gotten knocked around. Two starts ago in Oakland he got lit up for 7 runs (5 earned) and 11 hits in six innings. In this one, 8 runs (7 earned) and 11 hits again in 6(-plus) innings in a game where he blew a 4-1 lead and the Twins scored seven unanswered runs. He had a pretty decent April. This month, he's 1-3 with a 5.06 ERA. He did have his best start of the season this month, though as you may remember, the only run in that game was scored when Moyer balked with a runner on third against Tampa Bay (the Scott Kazmir game). The thing that was different about this start compared to his last bad one was that Moyer didn't walk anyone, which in a way is good and bad. If he did walk three guys and all of them came around to score, you could just say he had control problems and just shouldn't let those guys on base. When he doesn't walk anyone and he still gets smacked around, he just plain got hit hard. Moyer gave up two homers in this game, a two-run shot by Mike Cuddyer that propelled the Twins back into the lead at 5-4 as well as the Juan Castro (number nine hitter) solo dinger that gave the Twins an insurance run. Moyer is 1-3 with a 6.20 ERA on the road this season and 1-2 with a 3.55 ERA at home. Lefties are hitting .277 against him while righties are hitting .356.

Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 39-12 .765 -- W7
2002 33-18 .647 6 W1
2003 33-18 .647 6 W2
2000 27-24 .529 12 W1
2006 22-29 .431 17 L3
2005 21-30 .412 18 L1
2004 19-32 .373 20 L1

Piñeiro. Santana. Tomorrow.

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