Sunday, September 24, 2006


AP Photo -- Jeff Roberson

[posted in full Sun 8 Oct ~12:31p]

In 25 words or less: The Mariners end up taking two games in a series where they should have had at least three of four. That's fitting.

This one featured Ryan Feierabend going up against Freddy Garcia. Feierabend was making his first big-league start. Jermaine Dye came back to play in the game after coming up with an injury trying to get out of the mud on his way to first after Saturday's rain delay. A win in this game would give the Mariners five wins in six games, six in eight games, and seven in ten games. A loss would give the Mariners their first losing streak in ten games. It would also land the Mariners a mere split in the four-game series instead of three out of four. Of course, greedy me thinks the Mariners should have ended up with a sweep of the series, but the way the rest of the year has gone, that's a completely unreasonable expectation.

Ichiro looped an 0-2 pitch to Iguchi in shallow center. Adrian Beltre whiffed on a 1-2 change. Kenji Johjima took the second pitch off his left-elbow body armor. Raul Ibañez popped the second pitch to Crede on the outfield grass. Garcia threw 12 pitches.

Pablo Ozuna stung a 2-2 pitch past Beltre and into leftfield for a single. Tadahito Iguchi hadn't had a pitch thrown to him when Feierabend tried a pickoff move to first and first-base umpire Brian Gorman called a balk. Iguchi bunted the first pitch along the third-base line to Beltre, who came halfway down the line and had to avoid Feierabend to make the barehand-charge-and-throw move to get Iguchi at first, moving Ozuna to third. Jermaine Dye was up 3-1 and whiffed on a belt-high full-count fastball. Jim Thome bounced out to second. Feierabend threw 15 pitches.

Richie Sexson couldn't hold a checkswing on a 2-2 curve over the outside corner. Ben Broussard popped very high to Anderson in rightcenter. Jose Lopez tapped the second pitch to third. Garcia threw eight pitches and had 20 through two.

Paul Konerko got ahead 2-0 before flying out on a full count to leftcenter, where Ibañez nearly overran the ball, running to his left and reaching to his right at the last second. Joe Crede worked a 1-2 count full before nubbing out to second. AJ Pierzynski slapped the second pitch to the gap in leftcenter, reaching the wall for a double. Juan Uribe whiffed on a high 0-2 fastball. Feierabend threw 17 pitches and had 32 through two.

Chris Snelling fell behind 0-2 and took a 1-2 pitch off his left foot. Yuniesky Betancourt popped the first pitch to Dye just in front of the stands in foul ground along the rightfield line, but an alert Snelling tagged and went to second. Ichiro pop-bunted the first pitch to Crede coming in from third. Beltre rolled the second pitch to short. Garcia threw eight pitches and had 28 through three.

Brian Anderson cranked an 0-2 pitch five rows into the seats in leftcenter.
Ozuna popped the first pitch to Broussard just foul along the first-base line. Iguchi had the hitters' counts before taking a low full-count pitch. Dye took a 2-1 pitch that skipped on Johjima and bounced away, moving Iguchi to second. Dye took a 3-1 pitch down and away for a walk. Thome looped the second pitch into shallow rightcenter for a single, scoring Iguchi and moving Dye to third. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves visited the mound.
Konerko fell behind 0-2 and whiffed on a 1-2 change down over the outer half. Crede popped the first pitch to Ichiro in fairly deep rightcenter. Feierabend threw 22 pitches and had 54 through three.

Johjima popped the second pitch high to Uribe on the left side. Ibañez smacked a low 0-2 pitch into right for a single. Sexson popped a 1-2 pitch high to Anderson in leftcenter with Ozuna right next to him as there was nearly a low-speed collision. Broussard looped a 2-2 pitch into shallow center between Anderson and Iguchi for a single to move Ibañez to third. Lopez bounced to short for a 6-4 force on Broussard at second. Garcia threw 20 pitches and had 48 through four.

Pierzynski bounced the second pitch past Sexson and into rightfield for a single. Uribe let a low liner on an 0-2 pitch bounce just in front of him, and he started a 4-6-3 double play, surely bringing an ear-to-ear grin from Ron Fairly in the booth. Anderson worked a 1-2 count full before shooting a hard grounder off Beltre's leg at third and it rolled away (error). Ozuna lined the second pitch toward short, where Betancourt climbed the ladder to glove it. Feierabend threw 13 pitches and had 67 through four.

Snelling popped to Uribe, who ran a long way into leftfield and toward the line for the catch. Betancourt looped a 1-2 pitch just in front of Anderson in shallow center for a single. Ichiro nubbed a 2-0 pitch just past the mound, where Crede charged over but the ball came out of his glove as Ichiro got the single and Betancourt moved to second. Beltre got ahead 2-0 and lined a 2-2 pitch into leftcenter for a single, scoring Lopez and moving Ichiro to second.
Johjima bounced an 0-2 pitch right to third for an easy 5-4-3 double play. Garcia threw 19 pitches and had 67 through five.

Iguchi popped the second pitch to a running Ichiro in leftcenter. Dye had the hitters' counts and took a high full-count fastball. Thome popped the second pitch to Beltre at the third-base coaches' box. Konerko had the hitters' counts*** before lofting a full-count pitch into the Chicago bullpen just over the wall in left.
Crede golfed a 2-2 low breaking ball twelve rows into the leftfield seats.
Pierzynski bounced the second pitch to first. Feierabend threw 23 pitches and had 90 through five.

Ibañez fouled off five 2-2 pitches before smoking a liner right into Iguchi's glove at second. Sexson popped the first pitch high to Iguchi at second. Broussard served a 1-2 pitch into left for a single. Lopez bounced the first pitch to third. Garcia threw 18 pitches and had 85 through six.

Uribe whiffed on a 2-2 fastball. Anderson singled in front of Ibañez in left on the second pitch. Ozuna popped the first pitch very high to second. Iguchi popped to Lopez just foul of the rightfield line.

Feierabend's line: 6 innings, 5 runs, 8 hits, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts, 101 pitches (61 strikes)

Ryan Sweeney came in to play leftfield. Snelling whiffed on a 2-2 breaking ball. Betancourt popped high to Anderson in fairly deep rightcenter on the second pitch. Ichiro lashed a single through the right side. Beltre showed bunt and pulled back on the second pitch as Ichiro stole second without a throw. Beltre took a 3-1 pitch off the outside corner. Johjima took the second pitch as Ichiro stole third base without a throw (44th of the season). Johjima made it all moot and roped the next pitch four rows into the leftfield seats to the right of the Chicago bullpen.

Matt Thornton came in for Garcia. Ibañez whiffed on a 2-2 fastball that bounced off Pierzynski's glove and to the backstop (passed ball) as Ibañez reached first.

Mike MacDougal came in for Thornton. Sexson lined out to a sliding Dye in rightfield on the second pitch.

Garcia's line: 6 2/3 innings, 4 runs, 8 hits, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts, 104 pitches (73 strikes)
Thornton's line: 0 innings, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 5 pitches (3 strikes)
MacDougal's line: 1/3 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 2 pitches (1 strike)

Emiliano Fruto came in for Feierabend. Dye had the hitters' counts and walked on a 3-1 inside pitch. Thome got ahead 2-0 and Chaves visited the mound. Thome got ahead 3-0 and walked on a 3-1 pitch up and away, moving Dye to second. Konerko fisted the second pitch into shallow center for a single to load the bases. Crede whiffed on an inside 1-2 pitch. Josh Fields was announced as a pinch-hitter for Pierzynski.

George Sherrill came in for Fruto. Fields worked a 1-2 count for a walk to force Dye across.

Joel Piñeiro came in for Sherrill. Uribe golfed the second pitch five rows into the seats in leftcenter.
Anderson chopped over the mound to Betancourt, who made the play to first. Sweeney bounced over the mound to second.

Fruto's line: 1/3 inning, 3 runs, 1 hit, 2 walks, 1 strikeout, 17 pitches (7 strikes)
Sherrill's line: 0 innings, 1 run, 0 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 6 pitches (2 strikes)
Piñeiro's line: 2/3 inning, 1 run, 1 hit, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 9 pitches (5 strikes)

Neal Cotts came in for MacDougal. Broussard drove a 2-2 pitch that got to the left edge of the hitters' backdrop over the centerfield wall.
Lopez slapped a 2-0 pitch just over the rightfield wall into the Bullpen Sports Bar. Adam Jones was announced as the pinch-hitter for Snelling.

Dustin Hermanson came in for Cotts. Greg Dobbs, hitting for Jones, dropped a double into deep rightcenter that one-hopped Anderson on a sliding catch attempt. Betancourt popped the second pitch to Sweeney in shallow left. Ichiro popped a 2-0 pitch high to Alomar behind the plate. Beltre tapped to the left side, where Hermanson came off the mound to field it and throw to first. Hermanson threw 13 pitches.

Cotts' line: 0 innings, 2 runs, 2 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 8 pitches (4 strikes)

Francisco Cruceta came in for Piñeiro. Iguchi drove the first pitch, lining it off the base of the centerfield wall for a double. Dye tapped slowly toward short, where Betancourt charged and threw to first as Iguchi went to third. Thome took a second pitch down and in that bounced away from Johjima, but Iguchi was a little too opportunistic and took off from third and Cruceta covered home to take a toss from Johjima and tag Iguchi at the plate. Thome got ahead 3-0 before walking on a full-count pitch. Konerko clubbed the first pitch five rows into the seats in leftcenter.
Crede was down 0-2 before popping a 2-2 pitch to right.

Cruceta's line: 1 inning, 2 runs, 2 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 18 pitches (11 strikes)

Johjima whiffed on a 1-2 breaking ball away. Ibañez reached down on a semi-hanging breaking ball of a 2-2 pitch, putting it five rows into the rightfield seats for his 30th homer in what has been an incredible season for him.
Sexson was up 3-1 before grounding to third on a full count. Broussard worked an 0-2 count full before whiffing on a pitch over the outside corner.

Hermanson's line: 2 innings, 1 run, 2 hits, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 35 pitches (21 strikes)

Gameball: Ben Broussard.
It wasn't too long ago that I was giving the goat to Broussard for every game he played until he got a hit. The hits have become somewhat more plentiful lately, and this 3-for-5 game with a homer is just part of that. Though he's been nowhere near as good with Seattle as he was with Cleveland earlier in the season, fans have to keep in mind that he's still a .293 hitter for the season, and the Mariners have his contract for next year, so he can still be quite useful. This game brought Broussard up to a .241 average, a .287 on-base mark, and a .434 slugging percentage. He hit .321, had an on-base percentage of .361, and slugged .519 for Cleveland before the trade near the end of July. Also, his homer in this game gave him 21 for the season, building upon his career high, which was 19 last season. To top all of this off, this was his 30th birthday, so it appears Broussard should have a good year or two left before it all starts tailing off and the Mariners hopefully get a younger and glitzier lefthanded bat that can play a couple of positions.

Goat: Emiliano Fruto.
If it weren't for that real nice big-league debut, I might think that Fruto is total crap. Way back on May 13th, Fruto relieved Gil Meche with one out in the sixth and a 7-4 lead. Fruto ended up finishing off the Angels in Anaheim that day, allowing one hit through 3 2/3 shutout innings, and he walked only one. What happens when you take away that first outing? You get 18 runs in 29 2/3 innings for a stellar ERA of 5.46. He's also walked 19 batters against 31 strikeouts without that first outing. The ideal ratio, of course, is 2-to-1 in favor of strikeouts, and 31 to 19 isn't quite there. I guess what's somewhat maddening is that sometimes he looks pretty dominant out there, but if he's not, it's because his command is terrible. If he can harness that, he's got some potential, but if not, he'll just be another hard-throwing, no-command guy that couldn't do anything in the Majors. If nothing else, he's the best Colombian pitcher in the Majors. He's also the only one and the first ever to make it to the Majors.

Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 111-45 .712 -- W1
2002 90-66 .577 21 W2
2003 89-67 .571 22 L1
2000 87-69 .558 24 W1
2006 75-81 .481 36 L2
2005 67-89 .429 44 L2
2004 60-96 .385 51 L1

Loaiza. Jimenez. Monday.

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