Saturday, May 20, 2006
[initial partial post]
In 25 words or less: It was a crappy day in the outer environs, but it led to a launch pad under the extended roof.
This one featured Chris Young going up against dead-armed Jarrod Washburn. Richie Sexson Bobblehead Night attracted 35338 fans. Set your over/under for Saturday night's crowd now. MLB.tv live feed was with the Mariners' crew, while the archived feed was the Mariners' crew with on-screen graphics.
Eric Young nubbed out to second. Mike Cameron was ahead 3-0 and laced the 3-1 pitch toward the leftfield corner for a double. Brian Giles popped a 3-1 pitch to left. Mike Piazza flew out to right on the second pitch. Washburn threw 15 pitches.
Ichiro shot a 2-2 pitch through the left side for a single. Jose Lopez worked a 1-2 count for a walk, though Ichiro had stolen second base on the 2-2 pitch. Raul Ibañez fell behind 0-2 before bouncing a 2-2 pitch to Barfield, who threw to second for the force as Ichiro moved to third. Richie Sexson whiffed on a high 0-2 pitch. Carl Everett had the hitters' counts before walking on a full-count pitch up and away to load the bases. Adrian Beltre took an 0-2 pitch over the inside corner. C Young threw 32 pitches.
Khalil Greene popped a 2-2 pitch high to shallow right. Mark Bellhorn whiffed on a full-count pitch down and in. Vinny Castilla grounded the first pitch to third. Washburn threw 14 pitches and had 29 through two.
Kenji Johjima dropped the head down on a high 2-0 pitch, depositing it above the manual scoreboard in left.
»» MARINERS 1, PADRES 0
Jeremy Reed flew out to right on a 2-0 pitch. Yuniesky Betancourt was ahead 2-0 and later popped to Bard behind the plate. Ichiro slapped an 0-2 pitch to the left side for a groundout to third. C Young threw 13 pitches and had 45 through two.
Josh Barfield grounded hard to third on the second pitch. Josh Bard popped a 2-2 pitch foul down the rightfield line to Sexson, making the catch over his left shoulder. E Young flew out to center on a 2-0 pitch. Washburn threw ten pitches and had 39 through three.
Lopez worked a 1-2 count full before hitting a fly ball to left that kept carrying until it landed in the visitors' bullpen just to the right of the manual scoreboard.
»» MARINERS 2, PADRES 0
Ibañez waved over an 0-2 breaking ball down and in. Sexson took a 2-2 pitch the other way, and it carried into the second row of seats in rightfield.
»» MARINERS 3, PADRES 0
Everett was ahead 2-0 before grounding a 2-2 pitch hard to Bellhorn at first, who made a diving stop and threw in time to C Young covering first. Beltre blistered a second-pitch single into shallow leftcenter. Johjima popped high to Cameron in shallow center. C Young threw 24 pitches and had 69 through three.
Cameron popped the second pitch to Reed short of the rightcenter track. Giles popped a 3-1 pitch high short of the track in center, much like Cameron before him. Piazza cranked a homer into the Mariner bullpen for his 402nd of his career.
»» MARINERS 3, PADRES 1
Greene put a line drive over Ichiro's head in front of the rightfield wall, and he got a double out of it. Bellhorn rolled out to short. Washburn threw 16 pitches and had 55 through four.
Reed fell behind 0-2 before whiffing on a 2-2 breaking ball. Betancourt took a 1-2 pitch at the knees over the outside corner. Ichiro tapped the second pitch back to the mound. C Young threw 12 pitches and had 81 through four.
Castilla looped the first pitch into center for a single. Barfield shot a grounder under Beltre's glove and down the leftfield line for a double, moving Castilla to third. Bard popped to left, and Ibañez' throw home was over the cutoff man, enabling Castilla to score and Barfield to move to third.
»» MARINERS 3, PADRES 2
E Young was ahead 2-0 and checked his swing on a 2-2 pitch before taking a full-count slider off his right kneecap. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves came to the mound for a visit. Cameron was ahead 3-1 and took a full-count pitch down and in to load the bases. Giles popped a 2-0 pitch to Ichiro as Barfield broke home from third. Johjima caught the throw and braced for impact as Barfield bowled him over, and he held onto the ball. Washburn, who was bailed out in the inning, threw 24 pitches and had 79 through five.
Lopez was had the hitters' counts before popping to left on the 3-1 pitch. Ibañez worked a 1-2 count full before lining right to Giles in rightfield. Sexson fell behind 0-2 and grounded the 1-2 pitch to third. C Young threw 17 pitches and had 98 through five.
Piazza worked an 0-2 count full before grounding to second. Greene was ahead 2-0 and whiffed on a low 2-2 change. Bellhorn blasted a 2-0 pitch into the elevated bleachers in left, but it was foul. Bellhorn ended up walking on a 3-1 pitch. Castilla had a 1-1 count when Chaves came to visit the mound. Castilla was ahead 3-1 before whiffing on a full-count pitch up and way away. Washburn threw 23 pitches and had 102 through six.
Washburn's line: 6 innings, 2 runs, 5 hits, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts, 102 pitches (55 strikes)
Everett poked a second-pitch single into right. Beltre popped a 2-2 pitch to the rightfield track as Everett held. Johjima popped high to Barfield on the right side. Reed took the second pitch low and Everett took off on a semi-delayed steal and was nearly out on the throw from Bard. Reed grounded hard to third. C Young threw 13 pitches and had 111 through six.
C Young's line: 6 innings, 3 runs, 6 hits, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts, 111 pitches (69 strikes)
Rafael Soriano came in for Washburn. Barfield rolled the second pitch up the line to Sexson, who tagged him out. Bard slapped a second-pitch fastball up and away over the manual scoreboard in left.
»» PADRES 3, MARINERS 3
E Young flew out to Reed in rightcenter on the first pitch. Cameron was ahead 3-0 and took a high full-count pitch for a walk. Giles flew out to Reed in leftcenter on the first pitch. Soriano threw 12 pitches.
Scott Cassidy came in for C Young. Betancourt shot a 1-2 pitch past the reach of Barfield into center for a single. Ichiro took a 1-1 pitch for a strike on the outside corner, and Bard threw to second to try to get Betancourt, but it was late and skipped through, enabling Betancourt to move to third. Ichiro punched the next pitch to a drawn-in Greene at short, who knocked it down but had no play as Betancourt held and Ichiro had the single. Lopez slapped the 1-2 low and away pitch down the rightfield line and into the corner for a double to score Betancourt, though they held Ichiro up at third.
»» MARINERS 4, PADRES 3
Alan Embree came in for Cassidy. Ibañez blistered a second-pitch single past a drawn-in infield into right to drive in Ichiro and move Lopez to third.
»» MARINERS 5, PADRES 3
Sexson whiffed on a 1-2 low breaking ball. Everett whiffed on a 2-2 pitch up and away. Beltre scorched a 1-2 pitch right at Giles in right. Embree threw 16 pitches.
Cassidy's line: 0 innings, 2 runs (1 earned), 2 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 10 pitches (8 strikes)
Embree's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 16 pitches (11 strikes)
Piazza bounced a 2-2 pitch to short. Greene took a 1-2 highish offspeed pitch for strike three. Bellhorn was ahead 2-0 before bouncing a 2-2 pitch to first (3-1 putout). Soriano threw 14 pitches and had 26 total.
Soriano's line: 2 innings, 1 run, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout, 26 pitches (17 strikes)
Jim Brower came in for Embree. Johjima slapped a 1-2 pitch into rightfield for a single. Reed smacked a triple on the second pitch over Bellhorn's head at first and into the rightfield corner to score Johjima, who had taken off with the pitch.
»» MARINERS 6, PADRES 3
Betancourt popped out to left as Reed tagged up, but E Young dropped the ball as he tried to put it into his throwing hand. Needless to say, Reed scored on the sacrifice fly with the error.
»» MARINERS 7, PADRES 3
Ichiro bounced a 2-2 pitch to third. Lopez was nicked on the jersey and took his base. Ibañez split his bat on a grounder to short. Brower threw 23 pitches.
Brower's line: 1 inning, 2 runs, 2 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 23 pitches (12 strikes)
JJ Putz came in for Soriano. Castilla whiffed on a 1-2 splitter down and in. Barfield poked a 1-2 pitch over Betancourt's head and into left for a single. Bard shot the second pitch down the leftfield line for a double, scoring Barfield.
»» MARINERS 7, PADRES 4
E Young couldn't check his swing on a low 1-2 splitter. Cameron whiffed on a 1-2 pitch.
Putz' line: 1 inning, 1 run, 2 hits, 0 walks, 3 strikeouts, 18 pitches (15 strikes)
Gameball: Kenji Johjima.
There's been minor turbulence at points this year with the imported Japanese catcher, but there have been very few of late. I remember earlier in the year complaining of a spate of passed balls. I haven't been complaining much about those lately (or at least don't remember it), so something good must be happening here. In seventeen games this month, Johjima has gone hitless only three times, and he started only one of those three games (other two as a late-inning replacement for Rene Rivera). This game here extended his hitting streak to seven games, and eleven straight games in which he was the starting catcher. During the hit streak, he's hit 9-for-25 (.360). Interestingly, the lowest Johjima's batting average has been after a game this season was at the end of April, when he was hitting .267. He didn't keep on the home run pace he was on the first two games of the season, of course, but he's quietly been hitting pretty well and pretty consistently. This of course is always good for the bottom third of the lineup, which has been the best in years for the Mariners, though the team is doing horrible.
Goat: Rafael Soriano.
He's been far from bad this year. No hitter went 0-fer in the lineup, so I had to go to somebody. Soriano came in with a 3-2 lead and gave up the incredibly untimely homer to Josh Bard to tie the game and take the win away from Jarrod Washburn. On the flip side, these were the first runs given up by Soriano since May 5th. This game swelled his ERA by 0.17, and it's now at 2.70. However, he has an ERA of 4.00 this month after having a miniscule 1.88 in the month of April. All in all, Soriano's done a solid job so far this year coming in around the seventh and/or sixth innings. Of course, with the whole Eddie Guardado situation, the whole thing has been a bit foggy as to what anyone's real role is in the bullpen except that JJ Putz has been closing. Who knows what role Soriano will have when Julio Mateo gets activated from the disabled list? Combine that with Eddie Guardado coming back into the closer's role, and it should be a tiny bit interesting to see who goes where. At least one of the minor-league callups will probably be gone, though.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 32-11 .744 -- W1
2002 29-14 .674 3 L2
2003 28-15 .651 4 W4
2000 23-20 .535 9 L2
2005 18-25 .419 14 W2
2006 18-25 .419 14 W1
2004 15-28 .349 17 W1
Hensley. Meche. Tonight.
Friday, May 19, 2006
No word on whether Dave Henderson will pull a Keith Hernandez and berate the Padres' female trainer. After all, this is the rivalry to end all rivalries! Bud Selig told us that the Padres are our rival, dammit!
I don't mind Interleague Play. But I've never been a fan of this artificial rivalry. And with the way the Mariners have played since 2004, well, I know my excitement level is just up there. Or not.
Since 1997, the Padres own a 25-19 record against the Mariners during the regular season. Throughout the history of this series, there have been some great and not-so-great moments. Every rivalry has to have a moment or two that makes the skin tingle. Or not. I know that when these two teams meet, I stop everything that I'm doing. This isn't Cubs-Cardinals or Yankees-Red Sox. No, this is better.
This is the Mariners versus the Padres. The greatest rivalry of them all.
Anyway, to kick off the 2006 edition of this great rivalry, here's some of the great and not-so-great moments of the Padres-Mariners series over the years:
July 15, 1999 --- Padres 3, Mariners 2
Jose Mesa ruins the opening of Safeco Field
June 16, 2001 --- Mariners 9, Padres 2
John Olerud hits for the cycle
June 20, 2003 --- Padres 5, Mariners 3
Jeff Nelson gives up game-winning grand slam to Rondell White
June 29, 2003 --- Padres 8, Mariners 6
Rondell White hits yet another grand slam off a Mariner reliever. This time, it was Arthur Rhodes. The Mariner bullpen gave up 6 runs in the top of the ninth. A sign that the 2003 season was headed in the wrong direction.
For the record, since that last game against the Padres at Safeco Field in 2003, the Mariners are 190-258 (.424). Yes, I just made a lot of people mad with that stat. Don't blame me, though. Blame the mediocre play of this ballclub since the summer of 2003.
There's not a lot to hate about San Diego except the fact that the Chargers get more respect than the Seahawks, which is downright blasphemy if you ask me. Oh well, San Diego is stuck with Marty Schottenheimer. But then again, we're stuck with Mike Hargrove (for the time being). Sigh...
Is it football season yet? When Christmas Eve comes, then I can really hate San Diego.
That's when the Chargers come to Qwest Field to take on the NFC Champion Seahawks.
[initial partial post]
In 25 words or less: The A's performed some spring cleaning, but if this doesn't change soon, the brooms might come to Seattle for the manager's and general manager's offices.
This one featured Joel Piñeiro going up against Kirk Saarloos. Piñeiro shaved his beard. Adrian Beltre sat out with a hamstring injury. The Mariners hoped to not get swept. I remember the days of my youth when the Mariners were terrible and especially terrible in Oakland. Then the Mariners were good for a few years and they were able to slay a lot of demons in Oakland and actually did kind of well. It's come full circle though, as Oakland again has become a house of horrors.
Ichiro fell behind 0-2 before shooting a single through the left side on a full count. Jose Lopez watched as Ichiro beat a throw and stole second. Lopez bunted the next pitch in front of the plate, where Melhuse threw to first and Ichiro scooted to third. There was a bit of a spat with Ken Macha arguing that Lopez ran inside the line on the bunt, though the ball did not hit him on the play. The umpires talked it over but the play stood. A reversal would have resulted in Ichiro moving back to second. Raul Ibañez chopped to first, where he was tagged going down the line as Ichiro scored.
»» MARINERS 1, ATHLETICS 0
Richie Sexson bounced an 0-2 pitch to short. Saarloos threw 18 pitches.
Mark Ellis rolled a 2-2 pitch to second. Nick Swisher chipped the second pitch into shallow rightcenter for a single. Mark Kotsay was ahead 3-0 and wound up slapped the 3-1 pitch into the leftfield corner for a double, and Swisher scored from first.
»» ATHLETICS 1, MARINERS 1
Piñeiro and Johjima had a mound meeting with the count 1-1 on Eric Chavez, who worked a 1-2 count for a walk. Frank Thomas was ahead 3-0 and took a 3-1 pitch down and in. Bobby Crosby spanked a not-low-enough 0-2 pitch into center for a single, scoring Kotsay and Chavez and moving Thomas to second. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves came to the mound for a visit.
»» ATHLETICS 3, MARINERS 1
Jay Payton, who had torn up Mariner pitching in the first two games of the series, popped the second pitch to left. Adam Melhuse served the second pitch into Betancourt's glove at short. Piñeiro threw 32 pitches.
Carl Everett chopped up the middle to Ellis, who was moving away from first and threw wide and late, giving Everett the single. Kenji Johjima grounded the second pitch hard along the third-base line to Chavez, who made a diving stop, got up, and threw in time to first as Everett moved to second. Jeremy Reed grounded the second pitch off Saarloos' leg, and it was picked up by Ellis, who hurried over and made the throw in time to first. Everett went to third on the play. Willie Bloomquist popped to shallow right. Saarloos threw nine pitches and had 27 through two.
Dan Johnson doubled to the wall down the rightfield line. Ellis chopped the second pitch high over the mound to Lopez, who was able to get the throw over to first in time as Johnson moved to third. Swisher popped a letter-high 0-2 pitch high to center, and Johnson tagged and scored.
»» ATHLETICS 4, MARINERS 1
Kotsay bounced out to second. Piñeiro threw 12 pitches and had 44 through two.
Yuniesky Betancourt rolled a ball in the hole on the left side and Crosby would have had to hurry to get a throw, but he could never get a handle on it and it went as a single. Ichiro blazed the first pitch right at Johnson at first, where it went off of Johnson's glove and into foul territory, where he got to it and tried to take it back to the bag before Ichiro got there, but he tripped up and crawled to first and had Ichiro beat, but he bobbled the ball as Betancourt went to second. Lopez chopped to short on the second pitch, nearly resulting in a 6-4-3 double play, but Lopez beat it out as Betancourt went to third. Ibañez bounced to second to start a 4-6-3 double play. Saarloos threw eight pitches and had 35 through three.
Chavez shot a ball up the middle past the mound and into center for a single. Thomas blasted a 1-2 pitch up the middle that nearly took off Piñeiro's head, but Lopez got to it (he was shifted) and underhanded forward to Betancourt going to the bag to start the 4-6-3 double play. Crosby lined the second pitch to Ichiro, but it wasn't ruled a sheostring catch as the hop was evidently miniscule (hard to tell with strictly DiamondVision television coverage). Payton popped an 0-2 pitch to shallow left. Piñeiro threw 13 pitches and had 57 through three.
Sexson punched a 2-2 pitch through the right side for a single. Everett scorched a 2-2 pitch into rightfield, but Payton ran it down toward the line for the out. Johjima had the hitters' counts before walking on a 3-1 pitch off the outside corner for a walk, moving Everett to second. Reed popped an 0-2 pitch to fairly deep center, allowing Sexson to move to third. Bloomquist grounded the second pitch to short for a 6-4 force of Johjima. Saarloos threw 20 pitches and had 55 through four.
Melhuse fell behind 0-2 before rolling a 1-2 pitch to second. Johnson popped the first pitch to left. Ellis took a 1-2 curve over the outside corner. Piñeiro threw ten pitches and had 67 through four.
Betancourt fell behind 0-2 and whiffed on a 1-2 breaking ball down and in. Ichiro dug a 2-2 pitch off the ground and put it up the middle for a single. Lopez grounded the first pitch hard to short, where Crosby threw in time to second, but Ellis hopped in the air to avoid the Ichiro slide and threw very wide to first (error), and Lopez scooted to second. Ibañez whiffed over a 2-2 breaking ball. Saarloos threw 15 pitches and had 70 through five.
Swisher was nailed in the right shoulder blade with a fastball. Kotsay bounced a ball up the middle where Lopez got to it beside second and quickly backhand tossed to Betancourt at the bag, who muffed it as what could have been a double play was instead a no play. Chavez cranked the first pitch just barely foul outside the rightfield foul pole. Chavez ended up chopping to first (3-1 putout) to move Swisher to third and Kotsay to second. Thomas dumped the second pitch into shallow right near the line for a single (Ichiro was positioned for the pull), allowing Swisher and Kotsay to score.
»» ATHLETICS 6, MARINERS 1
Crosby popped the first pitch to Ibañez on the leftfield track. Payton worked a 1-2 count full before chopping to Lopez near the bag at second, who tagged Thomas coming toward second. Piñeiro threw 20 pitches and had 87 through five.
Sexson bounced the first pitch to third. Everett grounded to second. Johjima lined a single into right on the second pitch. Reed grounded the second pitch to second. Saarloos threw eight pitches and had 78 through six.
Melhuse had the hitters' counts before popping out to left on a 3-1 pitch. Johnson was robbed on a line drive into left as Ibañez made a nice running catch heading away from the field on the track. Ellis was nicked on an arm on a 2-2 pitch. Swisher whiffed through a 2-0 pitch as Ellis nabbed second. Swisher ended up bouncing out to second. Piñeiro threw 19 pitches.
Piñeiro's line: 6 innings, 6 runs (5 earned), 7 hits, 2 walks, 1 strikeout, 106 pitches (66 strikes)
Bloomquist popped the first pitch to Swisher in leftcenter. Betancourt had the hitters' counts before bouncing a 3-1 pitch to Crosby, who had it roll through him (probably up his arm) for an error. Ichiro bounced the second pitch softly to Ellis on the right side, whose only play was to first as Betancourt advanced to second. Lopez grounded through the mound and up the middle past a diving Ellis and into centerfield for a single to score Betancourt.
»» ATHLETICS 6, MARINERS 2
Randy Keisler came in for Saarloos. Ibañez popped to Kotsay, who charged in and made the running catch. Keisler threw three pitches.
Saarloos' line: 6 2/3 innings, 2 runs (1 earned), 8 hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 89 pitches (58 strikes)
Eddie Guardado came in for Piñeiro. Kotsay went for the second pitch and was was victim to a nice running basket catch by Ichiro in shallow right. Chavez grounded the first pitch hard to third. Thomas whiffed on a 2-2 pitch.
Guardado's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 8 pitches (5 strikes)
Sexson was ahead 3-1 before whiffing on a full-count pitch down and away. Everett was ahead 3-0 before finally walking on a low full-count pitch.
Steve Karsay came in for Keisler. Johjima grounded the first pitch hard to short to start the timely 6-4-3 double play. Karsay threw one pitch.
Keisler's line: 2/3 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 1 walk, 1 strikeout, 15 pitches (7 strikes)
Rafael Soriano came in for Guardado. Crosby grounded hard to short. Payton popped to left on a 2-2 pitch. Melhuse hit a liner for a nice running catch by Ibañez going toward the leftfield line.
Soriano's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 12 pitches (7 strikes)
Reed just missed a double into the leftfield corner before grounding a 2-2 pitch to Johnson behind the bag at first. Bloomquist took a 1-2 pitch off the left arm or hand somewhere. Betancourt popped an 0-2 pitch to Ellis on the outfield grass. Ichiro took the first pitch and Bloomquist stole second. On the next pitch, Ichiro singled near the leftfield corner to score Bloomquist.
»» ATHLETICS 6, MARINERS 3
Huston Street came in for Karsay. Lopez flew out high to left.
Karsay's line: 1 1/3 innings, 1 run, 1 hit, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 16 pitches (12 strikes)
Street's line: 1/3 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 4 pitches (2 strikes)
Gameball: Eddie Guardado.
I'm trying to go the non-obvious route here. I do look at the boxscores and my notes before I put these parts together, so I do know that Ichiro went 4-for-5. On a day when Ichiro collected four of the nine Mariners hits (all singles), I've decided to go with Guardado, who didn't let the game get further out of control in the seventh, which was good for him. It was 6-2 when he came in to pitch, and it was the same score after he left. Not a save opportunity for sure, but he needs baby steps for when this team gets the lead in the ninth again, which seems to come around as often as Halley's Comet. Ever since the last-straw blown save on May 3 at Chicago, Guardado has gone five games (innings as well) without giving up a run. He's struck out four and walked one over that span, yielding two hits. I wish I could jump to fun conclusions like saying this team will be a ton better when Guardado gets on track, but even if it happens, the bullpen isn't to blame for the entire last turn through the rotation -- every starting pitcher since the Moyer balk game has been terrible to the point where the opposing offense has put up a bunch of runs before the game gets into the bullpen. This entire Oakland series was crap in that respect -- they were down 6-0 and 7-0 in the first two games before they scored a run, and when they scored in the first inning of this game, Piñeiro turned around and gave up three runs right away in the bottom half. I should note the Mariners were outscored 25-11 in this sweep.
Goat: Joel Piñeiro.
He's the one who started this crappy-starting-pitching mess last Friday to open the Anaheim series. The Mariners started out this game by scratching out a run in the first inning for their first lead of the entire series and first lead since winning the game last Sunday, which seems like about three years ago. They took two of three in that series, though the Mariners won in spite of Gil Meche in the Sunday game and Jarrod Washburn was far from efficient and got hit around in the Saturday game before the Mariners pulled it out in extras. The Mariners had no such luck in this series. Back to this game, though, the Mariners got their first-inning run and Piñeiro followed it up with groundout, single, RBI double, walk, walk, two-run double, flyout, lineout. Eight hitters, two singles, a double, two walks, a groundout, and two flyouts. Terrible. End result -- a one-run lead turns into a two-run deficit and the starting pitcher just threw 32 pitches in his best Gil Meche impersonation and/or out-of-body experience. I'll end this by pointing out that Piñeiro had a 3.72 ERA after his two starts that got him the AL Player of the Week award. Two starts (nine innings) later, he's at 4.91.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 31-11 .738 -- L2
2002 29-13 .690 2 L1
2003 27-15 .643 4 W3
2000 23-19 .548 8 L1
2005 17-25 .405 14 W1
2006 17-25 .405 14 L3
2004 14-28 .333 17 L2
Young. Washburn. Tonight.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
[initial partial post]
In 25 words or less: With the Mariners, the fate of a game is never really in question.
This one featured Jamie Moyer going up against Barry Zito. The Mariners hoped to still have a chance to win the series after coming out of Anaheim with a series win. On the downside though, Mark Kotsay was hitting 16-for-28 against Moyer coming into the game. Let's just say it ended up being a seamless transition from Hernandez the night before to Moyer in this one.
Ichiro whiffed on a 1-2 curve down and away. Jose Lopez whiffed on a big 0-2 curve. Raul Ibañez pummeled the 2-0 pitch off the leftfield manual scoreboard for a double. Richie Sexson blistered a single through the left side on a 2-0 pitch, and Payton came up throwing as Ibañez broke for home. Ibañez was out by about five feet. Zito threw 15 pitches.
Mark Kotsay one-hopped the wall in rightcenter for a double on the first pitch. Jason Kendall rolled the second pitch up the middle for a single, scoring Kotsay.
»» ATHLETICS 1, MARINERS 0
Eric Chavez worked an 0-2 count and with the count 1-2, Kendall broke on Moyer's first move and he was picked off. Chavez worked the count full before flying out to left. Frank Thomas was ahead 2-0 before flying out high to left. Moyer threw 13 pitches.
Carl Everett fell behind 0-2 before drilling a 2-2 hanger into left for a single. Adrian Beltre got under the second pitch, popping high to left. Kenji Johjima lined the first pitch right to Chavez behind the bag at third, who instantly threw to first to double off Everett. Zito threw eight pitches and had 23 through two.
Bobby Crosby drilled a 3-1 pitch to the wall in leftcenter for a double. Nick Swisher whiffed on a 2-2 pitch. Jay Payton fell behind 0-2 before dumping a 1-2 pitch into right for a single to move Crosby to third. Bobby Kielty poked the second pitch through the left side for a single, scoring Crosby and moving Payton to second.
»» ATHLETICS 2, MARINERS 0
Marco Scutaro rolled the second pitch to Lopez, who had to negotiate the screen of the second-base umpire as the ball bounced through his legs and eventually off Lopez' glove into center (error, apparently), enabling Payton to come around and Kielty to move to third.
»» ATHLETICS 3, MARINERS 0
Kotsay popped the second pitch to center and Kotsay tagged and scored easily.
»» ATHLETICS 4, MARINERS 0
Kendall lined a 1-2 pitch into Beltre's glove at third. Moyer threw 24 pitches and had 37 through two.
Willie Bloomquist was ahead 3-0 and walked on a 3-1 pitch. Yuniesky Betancourt fell behind 0-2 and watched as Bloomquist was picked off by Zito (1-3-6). Betancourt drove the 1-2 pitch just short of the track in center. Ichiro bounced a full-count pitch to first, where Swisher barely beat him to the bag with a slide. Zito threw 15 pitches and had 38 through three.
Chavez rolled the first pitch up the middle to Lopez, who tried to do the 4-6-3 putout thing, but the toss was very high and the single was inevitable. Thomas reached for a 2-2 pitch and flew out to center. Crosby worked a 1-2 count for a walk, moving Chavez to second. Swisher took an 0-2 pitch over the inside corner and took umbrage with plate umpire Angel Hernandez. Payton singled a 1-2 pitch over the middle into shallow center, but Chavez was out at the plate on the throw from center by Bloomquist. Moyer threw 20 pitches and had 57 through three.
Lopez popped the second pitch to third. Ibañez worked a 1-2 count full before bouncing out to third. Sexson drove the second pitch to the wall in rightcenter for a double. Everett grounded out to third. Zito threw 15 pitches and had 53 through four.
Kielty whiffed on a 2-2 change. Scutaro lined a 3-1 pitch to fairly deep center. Kotsay whiffed on a 1-2 change outside. Moyer threw 14 pitches and had 71 through four.
Beltre popped to left. Johjima drove the first pitch to the base of the wall in left for a double. Bloomquist for some reason swung at a 3-0 pitch and popped out to short. Betancourt was ahead 2-0 before grounding to short on a full count. Zito threw 14 pitches and had 67 through five.
Kendall lined a single into left. Chavez bounced the second pitch to the left side, where Beltre nearly overthrew at second but got the out, but Chavez beat out Lopez' wide throw on the back end, which was stopped by a diving stab by Sexson. Thomas walked on a 3-1 pitch in the dirt, moving Chavez to second. Crosby walked on a 3-1 pitch up and away to load the bases. Swisher looped a single into shallow left, scoring Chavez and keeping the bases loaded.
»» ATHLETICS 5, MARINERS 0
Payton grounded to short where Betancourt threw to second for the force, then Lopez got under the throw and put it way over Sexson's head into the first-base dugout, enabling Thomas and Crosby to score. Swisher was the runner forced out on the play.
»» ATHLETICS 7, MARINERS 0
Kielty singled the second pitch into rightfield and looked like he stopped between first and second. Ichiro threw in to Sexson, who had Kielty hung up between first and second. Payton wandered a bit down the third-base line, and eventually the throw went over there and he was hung up and tagged by Beltre for the final out of the inning. Moyer threw 22 pitches and had 93 through five.
Ichiro laced a single through the left side and Payton bobbled it in left, enabling Ichiro to move to second. Lopez dropped a 2-2 pitch for a single into right, moving Ichiro to third. Ibañez popped the second pitch high to Chavez in foul ground on the right side. Sexson worked an 0-2 count for a walk (amazing!), loading the bases. Everett whiffed on an 0-2 pitch up and away. Beltre tapped the first pitch back to the mound, where Zito threw home for the force. Zito threw 23 pitches and had 90 through six.
Scutaro fell behind 0-2 and bounced a 2-2 pitch softly to a charging Betancourt near the mound. Kotsay lined a high first pitch into center for a single. Kendall had the hitters' counts before grounding into a 5-4-3 double play on a full count. Moyer threw 14 pitches and had 107 through six.
Moyer's line: 6 innings, 7 runs (5 earned), 11 hits, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts, 107 pitches (62 strikes)
Johjima one-hopped a single to Kotsay, who had it bounce off himself and get away, enabling Johjima to get to second. Bloomquist was ahead 3-0 and looped a full-count soft liner to a diving Crosby in the left-side hole as Johjima held. Betancourt lined a 1-2 pitch to center and again Johjima had to hold. Ichiro bounced to third. Zito threw 15 pitches and had 105 through seven.
Zito's line: 7 innings, 0 runs, 8 hits, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts, 105 pitches (63 strikes)
Emiliano Fruto came in for Moyer. Chavez took a full-count pitch barely outside on the eighth pitch of the at-bat. Thomas walked on four pitches, moving Chavez to second. Antonio Perez came in to run for Thomas. Fruto had some company on the mound from the dugout. Crosby was ahead 2-0 before whiffing on a full-count splitter over the outside corner. Swisher flew out short of the track to Ichiro in rightcenter, allowing Chavez to tag and go to third. Payton flew out to left. Fruto threw 25 pitches.
Fruto's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 2 walks, 1 strikeout, 25 pitches (11 strikes)
Chad Gaudin came in for Zito. Lopez drove a double off the track and wall in center. Ibañez walked on a 3-1 pitch. Sexson smacked a single into right to load the bases with nobody out, then the pitching coach visited the mound. Everett had the hitters' counts before popping out foul to Chavez on the left side. Jeremy Reed, hitting for Beltre (who later was revealed to have strained a hamstring...some were probably hoping it was a straight-across pinch-hit move), laced a single into right on an 0-2 pitch, scoring Lopez and keeping the bases loaded.
»» ATHLETICS 7, MARINERS 1
Kiko Calero came in for Gaudin. Johjima lined out to right on an 0-2 pitch, but Ibañez tagged and scored.
»» ATHLETICS 7, MARINERS 2
Bloomquist bounced the first pitch to third. Calero threw four pitches.
Gaudin's line: 1/3 inning, 2 runs, 3 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 21 pitches (11 strikes)
Calero's line: 2/3 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 4 pitches (4 strikes)
George Sherrill came in for Fruto. Reed stayed in to play center while Bloomquist went to third. Kielty nubbed the first pitch along the first-base line, where Johjima pounced on it and threw in time to first. Scutaro was ahead 3-0 and wound up walking on a 3-1 pitch up and away. Kotsay grounded the first pitch for a 4-6-3 double play. Sherrill threw seven pitches.
Sherrill's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 7 pitches (3 strikes)
Huston Street came in for Calero. Betancourt singled into left on a hanging pitch inside. Ichiro grounded to second for a 4-6 force on Betancourt. Lopez took Payton just short of the leftfield track. Ibañez popped the first pitch to Scutaro in shallow right.
Street's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 10 pitches (7 strikes)
Gameball: Richie Sexson.
Would this be the obvious gameball of the night? Absolutely. How often does Richie Sexson go 3-for-3? Exactly. Though Sexson and the offense went homerless as usual, Sexson chipped in with two singles and a solid double. He even worked a walk from an 0-2 count, which is a victory in itself. Yes, Sexson managed to reach base every time he came to the plate. I'm glad there's usually a small silver lining to all of these Mariner losses, but someday I hope there's more lining than cloud. With this night alone, Sexson's numbers obviously have raised a bit. The batting average went up 16 points to .208, the highest it's been since May 2nd (.216). The on-base percentage went up 18 points to .283, the highest since May 6th (.289). The slugging percentage went up 20 points to .349, the highest since the 6th (.351). He's now hitting .200 in the month of May after a .213 month of April. I'm oddly encouraged by the walk Sexson drew tonight, for some reason. Frankly, I think this entire team needs to be more patient at the plate because it seems like they swing too early in the count too often, but that's a topic for another time.
Goat: Jamie Moyer.
As much as I wanted to put the goat on Willie Bloomquist for swinging on a 3-0 count with a runner on second and one out and the Mariners down by a tame 4-0 margin at that point (top of fifth), this one's on Moyer. For the second straight game, the Mariners had some shoddy defensive plays in the field, sure, but the Mariners probably won't win on many nights when they only score two runs anyway, bad pitching and/or defense be damned. Though not as explosively or demoralizing as what happened to Felix the night before, Jamie Moyer still got knocked around. With Hernandez, one could say that it's part of the growing pains and he'll learn from it. When the Mariners see the number-one guy in the rotation get taken to the woodshed the next night, though, it's depressing. Now they'll be depending on the rest of the rotation to stop a losing streak, and given the way the last turn through has gone, it doesn't look good. The last good start by the rotation was Moyer's 1-0 balk game five days ago. The other thing is that the A's are simply better than the Mariners, whereas the Padres are good. With Jamie though, he's the number-one guy in the rotation, so to see him get hit like this is a bit harrowing.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 31-10 .756 -- L1
2002 29-12 .707 2 W3
2003 26-15 .634 5 W2
2000 23-18 .561 8 W1
2006 17-24 .415 14 L2
2005 16-25 .390 15 L1
2004 14-27 .341 17 L1
Piñeiro. Saarloos. Today.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
-- Funny how on the same day that Wayne Hunter was cut loose after being hit with fourth-degree assault and malicious mischief citations, all I read by nightfall was that sources were confirming the extension of Mike Holmgren's contract with the Seahawks through the 2008 season. Continuity is good. With the coaches and the good players, that is. I notified a local Hawaiian coworker that Hunter was being released by the Seahawks, and he asked who I was talking about. I mentioned he played college ball at Hawaii, and he didn't see it as a familiar name. Keep in mind that the June Jones-coached Hawaii football team is their pro sport over here. The Pro Bowl's only here for a week, and the Maui Invitational is a plane flight away, so those don't count. Hawaii football at Aloha Stadium is the draw. But yeah, dude didn't know who Wayne Hunter was. Of course, that's the same coworker who roots for the Giants, and I was able to hang the Jay Feely thing over his head the whole last half of last season. Fun.
-- I barely care about the NBA Playoffs since the Sonics aren't in it and I didn't follow the NBA day to day like I did last season. Still, I'm glad the Lakers didn't close out the Suns in that series. Two Los Angeles teams would have been too much, and I can only deal with so much Kobe Bryant. Now if they can get some different blood deep into the playoffs other than Detroit and San Antonio, things will start to be all right. I'm sure the NBA wanted the Clippers and Lakers to advance to the second round, but if they wanted that so bad, they shouldn't have changed the first round from best-of-5 to best-of-7 midseason like they did a couple years back. The Lakers were the first team to three wins in that series. You think the 1993-94 Sonic team couldn't have come back from down 3-2 to take Game 6 in Denver and Game 7 in the Barn? Maybe they couldn't have, and maybe it's a waste of time to think about it, but Phoenix was the second seed and could be sitting home right now after a first-round loss under the best-of-5 system.
-- The Canucks aren't in the playoffs, and they fired coach Marc Crawford nearly immediately after the regular season ended. I'm watching the hell out of the playoffs though. I used to be able to get up for Game 1 of an NBA first-round series when it was still best-of-5. With the NHL playoffs, though, every single game seems like it has a ton of urgency. It's not like you know the Memphis Grizzlies are more than likely to get stomped. The eighth seed in the NHL playoffs has upset number one quite a few times, and it happened this year with Detroit choking bigtime against Edmonton. One odd thing about the playoffs is that the top four seeds in the East advanced past the first round, but the bottom four seeds in the West advanced. Detroit, Dallas, Calgary, and Nashville were all vanquished by San Jose, Anaheim, Colorado, and Edmonton. An interesting trend is the prosperity of young and/or rookie goaltenders in the playoffs. Carolina faltered early in the first round, then pulled Martin Gerber for rookie Cam Ward and they haven't looked back. Ryan Miller has helmed the impressive Buffalo Sabres. Ray Emery was in net post-Hasek for the Senators. Most huge, though, was the swap of Jean-Sebastien Giguere for Ilya Bryzgalov in the Anaheim, then the latter ran off that insane scoreless streak against Colorado. I think what I didn't like most considering goalies was Colorado using Jose Theodore instead of the horse that sort of held the fort, Peter Budaj, and nearly the same with Philadelphia, using Robert Esche in the playoffs instead of Antero Niittymaki. Colorado traded Aebischer for Theodore, and I guess they were kind of forced to use Theodore once he was cleared to play (he played only two games in the season for Colorado), but I think Philly should have gone with Niittymaki without question, but now they have all summer to think about that.
-- For some of the western NHL playoff games, OLN has been piping in the CBC in-game feed and then tossing back to the OLN studio for intermission. What they should do is just pipe in the CBC and TSN feeds, studio crews, commercials, and all. I'm in Hawaii and I need my Canadian Tire and Tim Horton's commercials, dammit!
-- Know what I flip the television to here sometimes when I'm bored as hell? Fox Soccer Channel. I don't even know how to watch soccer or anything, and usually I only do this late at night. But if I flip it there and ICC Cricket World is on...that show is awesome. I have barely an idea of what's going on, but it's awesome.
Football season needs to get here fast. I hope the Mariners give the sports fans in the region something to care about soon. I'm going through good baseball withdrawal here.
[initial partial post]
In 25 words or less: What's the point?
This one featured Felix Hernandez going up against Joe Blanton. For Oakland, it featured the dual returns of Steve Karsay coming back from the Cleveland system and Eric Chavez coming back from ye olde bacterial infection.
Ichiro smacked a 1-2 pitch past the backhand reach of Ellis into centerfield for a single. Jose Lopez fell behind 0-2 before rolling a 1-2 breaking ball through the left side for a single, moving Ichiro to second. Raul Ibañez was ahead 2-0 but later flew out to shallow right. Richie Sexson blistered the first pitch right to Chavez, who speared the laser and threw to second to double off Ichiro (5-4). Blanton threw 16 pitches.
Mark Ellis fell behind 0-2 and whiffed on a 1-2 breaking ball low. Nick Swisher took a full-count curve that evidently was just off the inside corner. Mark Kotsay laced the first pitch past the reach of Sexson and down the rightfield line with a double, moving Swisher to third. Eric Chavez punched the second pitch through the hole on the right side for a single, scoring Swisher and moving Kotsay to third.
»» ATHLETICS 1, MARINERS 0
Bobby Crosby whiffed on a 1-2 pitch off the plate outside. Jay Payton softly lined out to short. Hernandez threw 22 pitches.
Carl Everett slapped a 1-2 curve into left for a single. Adrian Beltre popped the second pitch high to center. Matt Lawton watched the second pitch go by as Everett was gunned down by roughly a mile, which hopefully means Lawton missed a sign as opposed to Hargrove actually sending Everett on a straight steal. On the next pitch, Lawton grounded out to second. Blanton threw nine pitches and had 25 through two.
Adam Melhuse popped a 1-2 pitch to left. Jason Kendall nubbed a 1-2 pitch back to the mound. Dan Johnson split his bat on the first pitch, chopping out to second. Hernandez threw nine pitches and had 31 through two.
Kenji Johjima was ahead 2-0 before flying out to center on a full count. Yuniesky Betancourt flew out to Johnson on the infield with the second pitch. Ichiro bounced to second on a 3-1 pitch. Blanton threw 14 pitches and had 39 through three.
Ellis singled into left on the first pitch. Swisher had the hitters' counts before popping to Beltre in the acreage of foul ground on the left side. Kotsay punched the second pitch for a single through the right side, moving Swisher to second. Chavez was ahead 2-0 before taking a 2-2 curveball of death over the inside corner. Crosby shot the second pitch through Beltre's legs on the in-between hop and into left for a single to score Ellis and move Kotsay to second.
»» ATHLETICS 2, MARINERS 0
Payton fell behind 0-2 before chopping a 1-2 pitch high to third, but Beltre's throw was beaten by Payton for the single to load the bases. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves visited the mound. Melhuse crushed a thigh-high pitch over the outer half, putting it into the stands high above the wall in rightcenter. That's a slam.
»» ATHLETICS 6, MARINERS 0
Kendall lined the second pitch to short just above Betancourt's shoelaces. Hernandez threw 28 pitches and had 59 through three.
Lopez poked the second pitch into left for a single. Ibañez punched a single through Johnson at first and into rightfield, moving Lopez to third. Sexson rolled over on an outside pitch, grounding into a 6-4-3 double play to score Lopez. As usual, no RBI on the play. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.
»» ATHLETICS 6, MARINERS 1
Everett popped to left on the first pitch. Blanton threw 11 pitches and had 50 through four.
Johnson lashed a single past the reach of Betancourt and into leftcenter. Ellis was ahead 2-0 and took a 2-2 breaking ball over the plate for strike three. Swisher drove a 2-2 semi-hanging breaking ball over the wall just to the left of center.
»» ATHLETICS 8, MARINERS 1
My video feed went out for a couple minutes. Kotsay grounded out to first. Chavez walked on four pitches. Crosby grounded the second pitch to third for a 5-4 forceout at second. Hernandez threw 21 pitches and had 80 through four.
Beltre grounded the first pitch to third. Lawton popped an 0-2 pitch to short. Johjima grounded to second. Blanton threw eight pitches and had 58 through five.
Payton singled the second pitch up the middle. Melhuse drilled the first pitch into the rightfield corner for a double, moving Payton to third. Kendall fell behind 0-2 before singling the 2-2 pitch over a drawn-in infield into rightcenter, scoring Payton and Melhuse.
»» ATHLETICS 10, MARINERS 1
Jake Woods came in for Hernandez. Johnson was ahead 3-1 and fouled a full-count pitch near the third-base dugout and Beltre carefully went into the dugout with momentum after the unsuccessful pursuit. Johnson took a full-count pitch over the inside corner. Ellis took a 3-1 pitch up and away for a walk, moving Kendall to second. Swisher popped high to Johjima near the stands behind the plate. Kotsay fell behind 0-2 before popping out to shallow right on a 2-2 pitch. Woods threw 23 pitches.
Hernandez' line: 4 innings, 10 runs (5 earned), 11 hits, 2 walks, 4 strikeouts, 90 pitches (57 strikes)
Betancourt doubled the first pitch to the wall in leftcenter. Ichiro served the second pitch into the leftcenter gap as well, though not to the wall as it went for just a single. However, Betancourt scored.
»» ATHLETICS 10, MARINERS 2
Lopez didn't try to swing at a first pitch inside, but nubbed it to first for what was almost a 3-6-1 double play, but the throw went off of Blanton's glove (it had Lopez beat). Ibañez grounded a 2-2 pitch hard to first for a 3-6-3 double play. Blanton threw 11 pitches and had 69 through five.
Chavez had a 2-0 count and later slapped a full-count single into leftfield. Marco Scutaro came in to run for Chavez. Crosby rode the second pitch to fairly deep center for a flyout as Scutaro held at first. Payton watched the second pitch way inside get away from Johjima and enable Scutaro to move to second. Payton smoked a single into centerfield and it got past Lawton and to the wall, scoring Scutaro easily, and he probably could have come all the way around if Ron Washington had not held him up.
»» ATHLETICS 11, MARINERS 2
Melhuse failed to check his swing on a 2-2 pitch in the dirt, but that's probably more of the umpire wanting to get to the hotel. I'd want to. Kendall was ahead 2-0 and ended up dropping a single into shallow rightcenter on a 2-2 pitch, scoring Payton.
»» ATHLETICS 12, MARINERS 2
Johnson lined out to Sexson. Woods threw 27 pitches and had 50 total.
Scutaro stayed in the game to play third. Sexson worked a 1-2 count full before taking strike three over the inside corner. Everett popped the second pitch to Crosby in shallow center. Beltre was ahead 2-0 and later whiffed obligatorily on a 2-2 breaking ball outside in the dirt. Blanton threw 14 pitches and had 83 through seven.
Blanton's line: 7 innings, 2 runs, 7 hits, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 83 pitches (56 strikes)
Jeremy Reed came in to play center, Roberto Petagine came in to play first, Willie Bloomquist came in to play third, and Lawton moved over to right. Ellis dumped a 2-0 single into center. Swisher grounded a 2-0 pitch hard to third, where Bloomquist bobbled it but stayed with it and threw in time to first as Ellis moved to second. Kotsay rolled out to short, moving Ellis to third. Scutaro worked a 1-2 count full before popping very high to short. Woods threw 18 pitches and had 68 total.
Woods' line: 3 innings, 2 runs, 4 hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 68 pitches (38 strikes)
Kiko Calero came in for Blanton. Lawton popped the first pitch high to shallow center. Johjima whipped the second pitch into left for a single. Betancourt fell behind 0-2 and whiffed on a 1-2 curve well off the plate outside. Reed took a 1-2 slider barely off the plate outside before drilling a 2-2 single through the right side, moving Johjima to second. Lopez took the second pitch as it bounced well away from Calero, allowing Johjima and Reed to advanced to third and second. Lopez went halfway up the high wall in leftcenter for a triple, scoring Johjima and Reed.
»» ATHLETICS 12, MARINERS 4
Ron Flores came in for Calero. Ibañez crushed a ball over the wall in rightcenter, scoring Lopez. Blips on the radar.
»» ATHLETICS 12, MARINERS 6
Petagine whiffed on an 0-2 breaking ball outside. Flores threw six pitches.
Calero's line: 2/3 inning, 3 runs, 3 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 17 pitches (12 strikes)
Flores' line: 1/3 inning, 1 run, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 6 pitches (5 strikes)
Sean Green came in for Woods. Crosby rolled out to short. Payton nubbed a grounder slowly toward third, where Bloomquist barehanded and couldn't quite beat Payton to first. Melhuse was behind 0-2 and took a 1-2 tailing fastball that came back over the inside corner. Kendall drove a 2-2 pitch toward the leftcenter gap, but Ibañez ran it down. Green threw 17 pitches.
Green's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 17 pitches (12 strikes)
Steve Karsay came in for Flores. Everett bounced an 0-2 pitch to second. Bloomquist popped out to Crosby on the outfield grass with the second pitch. Lawton grounded the 2-0 pitch very hard to first (3-1 putout).
Karsay's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 0 strikeouts, 8 pitches (5 strikes)
Gameball: Raul Ibañez.
He had a four-game winning streak going, but he was only 4-for-20 in that span and 6-for-35 since his last multi-hit game. In this one, he was one of the few bright spots tonight for the Mariners, going 2-for-4 with a two-run homer. With the single and the homer, Ibañez upped his slugging percentage by 20 points in one night, and it now sits at .485. Ibañez hit his fifth homer of the season in this game, tied for second on the team with Jose Lopez. That's one behind team-leader Carl Everett. There is so much wrong with that last sentence it's no wonder why this team is so much of a bore to watch and follow. Also sad, Ibañez is second on the team in RBIs with 22, eight behind Lopez and two ahead of Everett. In short, only three Mariners have 20 or more RBIs. The Devil Rays have two guys with 30 or more RBIs and another with 16. I guess the point is that even though Ibañez is hitting .294 and has been relatively consistent, I'd like to see the game log in the near future have a few more numbers greater than one in the hit column and stuff.
Goat: Felix Hernandez.
Adrian Beltre was worthless in this game and did commit the error that led to Felix being let off the hook for five of the runs, sure. That doesn't mean that Felix had it going or anything, because that was far from the case. Eleven hits is a lot of hits even if a pitcher throws a complete game. Eleven hits in four-plus innings, well, that's not good. This is one of those games Felix has to learn from, sure, but if you're like me and you look forward to a certain something every five days and hope you see something special out of this team and then get this, it's a bit depressing. It's unfortunate that Felix has to bite it against Oakland, since the A's are at the root of so much bad that's happened to the Mariners over the years, but the Mariners aren't going to be good this year, so no use worrying about that. All I want to see out of Felix is improvement, maturity, and the ability to dig himself out of trouble. He just plain got smacked around in this game. It was like it never ended. The boxscore says the game was only 2:28 long, but it seemed like it took forever. Oakland's inning-by-inning linescore reads 1-0-5-2-2-2-0-0-x.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 31-9 .775 -- W8
2002 28-12 .700 3 W2
2003 25-15 .625 6 W1
2000 22-18 .550 9 L1
2006 17-23 .425 14 L1
2005 16-24 .400 15 W1
2004 14-26 .350 17 W1
Moyer. Zito. Tonight.
Monday, May 15, 2006
For the first time in months, I've been able to take a break. My first year at Arkansas State was a great one and I'm already chomping at the bit to get back up there. In fact, I'll be back at ASU at the end of the month for the first summer term. School in the summertime, school in the summertime! It's not as bad as it sounds. Really.
I have one year of school left before I head out into the "real world". The real world of sports journalism. Over the last year, I've covered several sports at Arkansas State. I traveled to Lafayette, La. to cover the New Orleans Bowl for my school paper as well as the Sun Belt Conference basketball tournament in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Back in October, I also attended the National College Media Convention in Kansas City where I was able to meet various personalities from the sports journalism field. So while I haven't posted here at Sports And Bremertonians very often in recent months, it's not like I've been doing a whole lot of nothing. I'd rather be busy than be bored. That's how I look at life, anyway.
Don't worry, though, I've been able to keep tabs on everything that I should be keeping tabs on. The Seahawks have had a very productive offseason, even with the loss of the best guard in football, Steve Hutchinson. If the Seahawks were an East Coast team, Julian Peterson would be getting a ton of media attention. Of course, he's not LaVar Arrington. You know, the same LaVar Arrington who has failed to live up to expectations since he left Penn State. What makes anybody think that Arrington is going to be a star with the Giants? It's not like Tom Coughlin is easier to play for than Joe Gibbs.
Re-signing Shaun Alexander was the best move that the Seahawks could have made this offseason. As good as Hutch is, you don't give a guard $49 million. You do give your MVP running back $62 million, however. Granted, Alexander may not stick around the entire length of his deal (8 years), but is there a better guy to depend on to run the ball than #37? Yes, I know about the "Madden Curse" and its pitfalls. Alexander seems like the guy to break the "curse" to me. It should be pointed out that Alexander has never missed a game in his six-year career. We'll see what happens with the MVP this upcoming season.
It took me awhile to get over Super Bowl XL, but it's May 15. Time to think about the 2006 season. Time to think about destroying the Detroit Lions on Sept. 10 in Ford Field. For all the wrestling fans out there (I'm one of them), Wrestlemania 23 will be at Ford Field in 2007. Hey, these are the kinds of things that we bring up here at Sports And B's. We're not stats guys, folks. We'll leave that stuff to the people that give a damn about stats.
Before I move on to the Mariners, Lofa Tatupu built my hot rod. He's that damn good. If you want his jersey, I suggest you buy it now at the pro shop on Seahawks.com. They will run out once the season starts. Trust me. (Yes, I finally have a Lofa jersey. The people of Arkansas are awed by Lofa's presence on my big chest. Or not.)
The Mariners, where do I start? Does it seem like this team is just 3.5 games out of first place? It sure doesn't seem that way to me. I'm definitely in the "Fire Mike Hargrove" camp, but if I know the M's like I do, they'll wait until the end of the season to make a decision. This is the same organization that values players such as Willie Bloomquist over Jeremy Reed, the "centerpiece" of the Freddy Garcia deal. And you wonder why the Mariners are where they are...
The Stanley Cup Playoffs have been fun to watch. Wait, I haven't been able to watch the last two weeks of action since my cable system at home doesn't get OLN. Gary Bettman is to blame here. You mean to tell me that the NHL couldn't have worked on a network such as USA? USA is owned by NBC Universal. NBC is the over-the-air home of the NHL. Yet the NHL is on the same network that features the rodeo and endless "Take Me Fishing" commercials? The New NHL? Sounds more like the Old NHL. The New NHL would be more accessible to people like myself.
If anything, we're guaranteed a great Stanley Cup Finals, regardless of who's playing. Buffalo and Carolina will duke it out in the Eastern Conference Finals while Anaheim is awaiting the winner of the Edmonton-San Jose series out West. Like David, I'm definitely more interested in the Stanley Cup Playoffs than the NBA Playoffs. The NBA Playoffs, what's that? Northwest basketball fans are foreign to the concept. Wasn't it just last year that the Sonics were in the second round of the playoffs?
While I was walking in Memphis a few weeks ago after watching a game at Autozone Park, I noticed that the First Tennessee Bank building had "Go Grizz" lighted up in honor of the Grizzlies' third consecutive playoff appearance. It was then that I knew how low the NBA had sunk in the Northwest. The Memphis Grizzlies were making their third consecutive playoff appearance and both the Sonics and Blazers were missing out once again? It was definitely a sobering thought for sure.
To be honest with everyone that reads Sports And B's, I don't know how much I'll be able to post in the coming months. That's what happens when you have a life. But rest assured, Sports And Bremertonians will still exist in the meantime.
Elgin Baylor is your 2005-2006 NBA Executive of the Year. That's how I'll end this post. What a strange world we live in today, eh?
Oh, and I'm still here. I think.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
In 25 words or less: Another Mariner homer barrage combines with a bullpen-saving effort by some new blood.
This one featured Gil Meche going up against Jeff Weaver. It also featured some players using pink bats, all part of breast cancer awareness for Mother's Day. According to Rex Hudler on the KCOP-13 Anaheim feed, Weaver's mother was in attendance for this game. Before the game, Bobby Livingston was sent back to Tacoma and Emiliano Fruto was called to the bigs to take his spot in the bullpen. Julio Mateo is set to come off the disabled list soon, and it's either going to be Fruto or Sean Green getting sent back to the minors. Green is five years older than Fruto, which may figure into things. But there was still this game to play. Could the Mariners take two of three in Anaheim?
Ichiro grounded hard to first. Jose Lopez rode a 1-2 pitch to the gap and wall in leftcenter for his eighth double of the season. Raul Ibañez lasered a 2-2 pitch, a rope that got over the rightfield scoreboard in a hurry, about five rows back. That's the fourth homer of the season for Ibañez.
»» MARINERS 2, ANGELS 0
Richie Sexson cranked the second pitch on a line right to Figgins at third, who caught the ball above his foot. Carl Everett fell behind 0-2 and bounced a 2-2 pitch up the middle to the shortstop moving over. Weaver threw 20 pitches.
Chone Figgins took an 0-2 breaking ball that nearly hit him in the knee before popping to center on a 1-2 pitch. Orlando Cabrera got ahead 3-1 and rolled a full-count pitch to Betancourt at short, who uncharacteristically had it go off the heel of his glove. That's a lot of errors in a short amount of time for Betancourt. Vladimir Guerrero bounced a 1-2 pitch to second, too slow to turn the double play as Cabrera moved to second. Garret Anderson walked on a full-count pitch down and away. Juan Rivera popped the second pitch in foul ground on the left side, where Beltre fought the sun and made the catch. Meche threw 24 pitches.
Adrian Beltre took a 2-2 pitch off the side of his left hand, though Weaver thought it hit the knob of the bat. Nonetheless, Beltre was given first base. Kenji Johjima rolled an 0-2 pitch up the middle which turned into a crazy double play, Cabrera shoveled with his glove to Kennedy covering second, who caught the ball with his bare hand and threw in time to first. Jeremy Reed flew out to fairly deep left on the first pitch. Weaver threw nine pitches and had 29 through two.
Adam Kennedy got ahead 2-0 then flew out on a full count to Ibañez making a sliding catch in left. Dallas McPherson whiffed on an 0-2 curve in the dirt that went off Johjima's left elbow and got away from him toward the third-base dugout, but he went back, set his feet, and spun to throw off-balance to first barely in time. Mike Napoli hit a liner near the leftfield corner, where Ibañez fielded it and Napoli just beat the throw for a double. Tommy Murphy took an 0-2 hammer from Meche for strike three. Meche threw 20 pitches and had 44 through two.
Yuniesky Betancourt popped a 2-0 pitch high to Figgins on the infield grass. Ichiro dug a single into centerfield on the second pitch. Lopez drove a 3-iron four rows into the leftfield seats on the first pitch.
»» MARINERS 4, ANGELS 0
Ibañez had the hitters' counts and rode the 3-1 pitch to Murphy in centerfield, who caught it at the wall as Ibañez missed a homer by about a foot. Sexson lined the first pitch right into Figgins' glove again. Weaver threw 12 pitches and had 41 through three.
Figgins was ahead 2-0 before poking a 2-2 pitch up the middle for a single. Cabrera walked on four pitches to move Figgins to second and bring Johjima to the mound. Guerrero ripped the second pitch off the mound and over a leaping Lopez' head for a single, scoring Figgins and moving Cabrera to third rather than resulting in a double play.
»» MARINERS 4, ANGELS 1
Anderson rolled to second for a 4-6 forceout of Guerrero, but it was hit a bit too slow for the double play as Cabrera scored.
»» MARINERS 4, ANGELS 2
Rivera got ahead 3-1 and drove a full-count pitch to rightcenter, where Reed had a long way to run before reaching up to make the catch and taking an upper body full of wall as Anderson hurried back to first. Kennedy golfed the second pitch four rows above the rightfield scoreboard to tie the game, telling us what we already know -- Meche is terrible.
»» ANGELS 4, MARINERS 4
McPherson was ahead 2-0 before popping to right. Meche threw 22 pitches and had 66 through three.
Everett golfed the first pitch into the open area over the rightfield fence between the bleachers and the seats down the line, probably where they keep the rolling batting cage.
»» MARINERS 5, ANGELS 4
Beltre spanked the second pitch into leftfield for a single. Pitching coach Bud Black came out to the mound for a visit. Johjima chopped a 1-2 pitch to short to move Beltre to second. Reed had a 3-1 count before whiffing over a curve in the dirt. Betancourt got ahead 2-0 and later lined a pitch into the leftfield tunnel.
»» MARINERS 7, ANGELS 4
Kevin Gregg came in for Weaver. Ichiro knocked a ball up the middle that Gregg reached back for and got the glove on, but none of the other infielders had time to make a play on it. Lopez lined out to right. Gregg threw seven pitches.
Weaver's line: 3 2/3 innings, 7 runs, 7 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 59 pitches (38 strikes)
Napoli singled past a diving Beltre into leftfield. Murphy was ahead 2-0 and flew out to Ichiro in rightcenter. Figgins took a 1-2 curve over the outside corner, a flash of brilliance from Meche. Cabrera fell behind 0-2 before whiffing on a 1-2 pitch out of the zone, down and away. Meche threw another 22 pitches and had 88 through four.
Ibañez popped a 2-0 pitch to left. Sexson took a 1-2 fastball barely over the outside corner. Everett was ahead 2-0 before singling past the reach of Kennedy into centerfield for a single. Beltre took the third pitch and it got away from Napoli (wild pitch), moving Everett to second. Beltre ended up cranking a full-count pitch, but it was just short of the track and hauled in by Murphy in center. Gregg threw 21 pitches and had 28 total.
Guerrero got the hitters' counts before walking (really) on a 3-1 pitch up and in. Anderson whiffed on a 1-2 mother of a curve. Rivera dumped a ball into shallow center, where Betancourt came down with it. Kennedy rolled a 1-2 pitch to second. Meche threw 19 pitches and had 107 through five.
Johjima smacked the first pitch into rightfield for a single. Reed fisted a 1-2 pitch to second for a 4-6 forceout of Johjima. Betancourt watched with a 1-0 count as Reed was picked off of first. Betancourt later popped to Guerrero in shallow rightcenter.
Gregg's line: 2 1/3 innings, 0 runs, 3 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 37 pitches (22 strikes)
McPherson was ahead 2-0 before lining a single into right. Napoli took the second pitch off his left forearm or hand, moving McPherson to second. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves came to the mound for a visit. Murphy drove the second pitch toward the leftcenter gap, but Reed came away with it, making a diving catch, fully extended, probably saving a couple of runs. McPherson tagged and went to third.
Emiliano Fruto, making his Major League debut and wearing number 53 on his back, came in for Meche. Figgins nubbed back to the mound, where Fruto started the 1-6-3 double play. Fruto threw three pitches.
Meche's line: 5 1/3 innings, 4 runs, 6 hits, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts, 116 pitches (67 strikes)
JC Romero came in for Gregg. Ichiro had the hitters' counts before walking on a 3-1 pitch inside. Lopez poked a 1-2 pitch through the right side for a single as Ichiro drew a throw to third from Guerrero, who had no chance to get Ichiro. Then Figgins threw to second, where he threw into Lopez running into second, and it went off him and into centerfield (error). The hectic play ended with both Ichiro and Lopez coming around to score.
»» MARINERS 9, ANGELS 4
Ibañez popped the first pitch high on the infield, where McPherson fought the sun and came up with it. Sexson whiffed on a 2-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Everett flew out to center on an 0-2 pitch. Romero threw 18 pitches.
Romero's line: 1 inning, 2 runs (unearned), 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout, 18 pitches (11 strikes)
Cabrera fell behind 0-2 and rolled a 1-2 pitch up the middle and Betancourt ranged to his left, spun, and threw in time to first as he fell to the ground with the momentum. Guerrero popped a 2-2 pitch to Betancourt in foul ground down the leftfield line. Robb Quinlan, hitting for Anderson, bounced the second pitch to second. Fruto threw 12 pitches and had 15 total.
Esteban Yan came in for Romero. Beltre was ahead 2-0 and ended up popping to McPherson in foul ground on the right side, where he had to avoid Mariner first-base Mike Goff while fighting the sun. Johjima was ahead 2-0 before grounding hard to first on a full count. Reed failed to hold a checkswing on an 0-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Yan threw 13 pitches.
Rivera popped high to shallow center. Kennedy fell behind 0-2 before dropping a 1-2 single into shallow center. McPherson whiffed on the first pitch and his bat flew into the stands. On the next pitch, he bounced to Fruto near the first-base line, who tossed to Sexson as Kennedy moved to second. Napoli rolled the first pitch to third. Fruto threw ten pitches and had 25 total.
Betancourt popped the second pitch to Cabrera in shallow left. Ichiro fell behind 0-2 and rolled a 1-2 pitch to short, where Cabrera hurried and closed the glove too early. That'll happen when Ichiro is the guy who hit the ball, and he got aboard on the error. Lopez flew out to right on a 2-2 pitch. Ibañez fell behind 0-2 and chopped a 1-2 pitch up the middle to Kennedy, who stepped on the second-base bag for the force. Yan threw 19 pitches and had 32 total.
Yan's line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 32 pitches (23 strikes)
Murphy walked on a full-count high pitch. Figgins watched as Murphy took second without a throw. Figgins rolled a 2-2 pitch to first, moving Murphy to third. Cabrera lined the first pitch into the glove of Lopez on the rightfield grass as Murphy held at third. Guerrero lined the first pitch to left.
Fruto's line: 3 2/3 innings, 0 runs, 1 hit, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 38 pitches (26 strikes)
Gameball: Emiliano Fruto.
What a first day in the Majors for this guy, huh? The Mariner bullpen had just worked 7 1/3 innings in the extra-inning affair the night before and had worked 12 1/3 innings in the first two games of the series combined. After Meche couldn't get through the sixth inning, it appeared the bullpen would indeed be in dire straits once again. However, it appeared Mike Hargrove's ace in the hole was the 21-year-old Fruto, and he was quite good on this day. Fruto threw 3 2/3 innings to give the rest of the bullpen a much-needed day of rest which will combine with Monday's off day to get the Seattle relief arms doubly rested for three in Oakland mid-week. The Fruto appearance wasn't the only important first -- the matchup of Fruto against Orlando Cabrera marked the first all-Colombian hitter/pitcher matchup in Major League history. Though not as big a thing as the World Baseball Classic in March, little things such as this help grow the game. Growing the game is good. For Fruto, his arm might not be used again until Wednesday, but he was much needed in this game. I know it's just one appearance, but it looks like they can toss him into the Julio Mateo role. Of course, Mateo will be coming off the disabled list soon...
Goat: Gil Meche.
Originally I was going to go with Richie Sexson for this on account of his 0-for-4 day with two strikeouts. Sexson strikes out, that's part of his game. The two balls he actually got in play were absolutely scorched even if they were hit right at Chone Figgins at third. Jeremy Reed went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts as well, but more than made up for that with his defense, so there was no way I was going to put him here. Thus, though he struggled and still got the win, it's another bewildering and inefficient start for Gil Meche. The fifth was Meche's only full inning in which he threw less than twenty pitches. He got hit around and coughed up a four-run lead in the third and was fortunate that all the runs were in as the bottom of the lineup came to the plate. The worst thing he did in that inning was walk Orlando Cabrera on four pitches to put two on with nobody out. After that, he got a couple of ground balls, but the bounces were unfortunate -- one skipped off the mound and would have been a double play on the Vladimir Guerrero grounder, the other was the Garret Anderson grounder that wasn't fast enough. The walk compounded the lack of luck. Jeremy Reed made the nice catch in rightcenter to possibly save a run before Kennedy drove it in anyway with the homer. Anyway, I long for the day Meche gets into the seventh with every start. A guy can dream, can't he?
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 30-9 .769 -- W7
2002 27-12 .692 3 W1
2003 24-15 .615 6 L1
2000 22-17 .564 8 W4
2006 17-22 .436 13 W2
2005 15-24 .385 15 L2
2004 13-26 .333 17 L3
Jeremy Reed and Adrian Beltre homered on Friday. Yuniesky Betancourt, Reed, and Richie Sexson homered yesterday. Raul Ibañez, Jose Lopez, Carl Everett, and Betancourt homered today. Who would have thought we'd be talking about Reed and Betancourt homering twice each in the same weekend series? The Mariners have hit 31 homers this season, and nine of them came in the past three games in this series against the Angels. That's 29% of the homers coming in 7.7% of the games. What does this mean for the Mariners? Who knows what it means going forward? It probably won't mean jack on Tuesday since Joe Blanton will probably toss a three-hit shutout or something. I'd like to see a series where Richie Sexson hits a couple homers and drives in eight runs or thereabouts. With Adrian Beltre, I'd have to expect something smaller...something like Beltre batting .500 in a three-game series would be a baby step, homers or not. It's not just those two that have room to improve, though. Raul Ibañez has a four-game hitting streak, sure, but he's 4-for-20 in that stretch. Since his last multi-hit game, Ibañez is 6-for-35 (.171). While the team has had an offensive warming the last three days, Ibañez hadn't had his batting average drop below .300 in May until this series.
With 39 games gone, the Mariners are very close to the quarter-pole of the 2006 season. Ichiro leads the team in runs scored (27), hits (48), triples (three have 3), and steals (13). Raul Ibañez leads the team in doubles (10) and triples (three with 3). Jose Lopez leads the team in RBIs (28) and total bases (75). Carl Everett leads the team in homers (6) and oddly, walks (17). Unsurprisingly, Ichiro leads all regulars with a .293 batting average and a .356 on-base percentage. Lopez leads the regulars in slugging with a .469 clip.
On the pitching side, Joel Piñeiro has the most wins with a 4-3 record and has the staff's only complete game of the season. He also leads the staff in giving up homers, which he's done eight times. Jarrod Washburn leads the staff in losses and has a 2-5 record, but is averaging about 6 2/3 innings per start. Jamie Moyer leads the starters with a 3.29 ERA (Gil Meche at 4.84). In the bullpen, JJ Putz leads the regulars with a slim 1.83 ERA, with Rafael Soriano not far behind at 2.66. Putz also has an ungodly six walks against 28 strikeouts (4.67:1 BB/K ratio). Soriano is at eight walks with 25 strikeouts (3.13:1). Putz and Eddie Guardado both have four saves, but Putz has saved four of five chances while Guardado is 4-for-7, as we're familiar with. Since I haven't thrown in a dose of Felix Hernandez here yet, I should mention that he leads the team in strikeouts with 43 despite having one less start than the rest of the rotation, and he also leads in hit batters with four.
For sheer recordkeeping purposes, the double play turned in the second inning by Anaheim was the number-one Web Gem on Baseball Tonight, whereas the Jeremy Reed full-extension diving catch was fourth. Bollocks, I say. I hope Mike Hargrove is storing these defensive plays by Reed in his mind somewhere. He's good, Mike. Just give him time. You know you won't be losing runs because he's out there playing defense.
And so it is. An off day coming tomorrow followed by three in Oakland, followed by next weekend hosting the Padres and the road gold uniforms, not to be confused with Rold Gold pretzels that come from the bag and are all nice and salty.
Hernandez. Blanton. Tomorrow.
In 25 words or less: Four hours and eleven minutes is way too long a time to spend watching this team, but at least they won.
This one featured Jarrod Washburn going up against John Lackey. Washburn returned to the Big A for the first time as an opponent, and he was starting against one of his good friends, a point made roughly a billion times over the Anaheim feed (KCOP-13) which was the live MLB.tv feed. As it turned out, neither Washburn nor Lackey were involved in the final six innings of this game. An amazing shock factor for the Mariners -- three homers. From the hitters, that is. Mariner pitching didn't give up three homers, amazingly. The offense is responsible this time for the homers, but the bullpen was responsible for 7 1/3 innings of pure goodness.
Ichiro apparently didn't check his swing on an 0-2 low breaking ball off the plate inside. Jose Lopez fell behind 0-2 and rolled a 1-2 pitch to second. Raul Ibañez took an 0-2 tailing fastball over the inside corner. Lackey threw 11 pitches.
Chone Figgins fell behind 0-2 and bounced the 1-2 pitch to short. Orlando Cabrera flew out to right. Garret Anderson rolled a 2-2 pitch back to the mound. Washburn threw 16 pitches.
Richie Sexson chopped an 0-2 pitch to short. Carl Everett fouled off a couple of 0-2 pitches before dropping a 1-2 single into right. Adrian Beltre popped the second pitch high to right. Kenji Johjima chopped to third. Lackey threw 17 pitches and had 28 through two.
Vladimir Guerrero crushed the first pitch into the bullpen in leftcenter.
»» ANGELS 1, MARINERS 0
Tim Salmon popped to Reed in fairly deep center. Juan Rivera was ahead 2-0 and later popped to right. Robb Quinlan poked a single up the middle. Jose Molina popped to Lopez in shallow center. Washburn threw 13 pitches and had 29 through two.
Jeremy Reed popped the second pitch to Cabrera in shallow center. Yuniesky Betancourt got a hold of a pitch, putting it onto the green area over the wall in leftcenter, to the right of the stands.
»» ANGELS 1, MARINERS 1
Ichiro lined out to left on the first pitch. Lopez whiffed on a 2-2 pitch up and in. Lackey threw 12 pitches and had 40 through three.
Howie Kendrick grounded a 1-2 pitch hard to first. Figgins popped the second pitch to Reed in shallow leftcenter. Cabrera dumped a 2-2 single into rightcenter. Anderson smacked an 0-2 pitch through the left-side hole for a single, moving Cabrera to second. Guerrero got ahead 3-1 before taking a pitch away in the dirt on a full count to load the bases, only Guerrero's third time he's reached a full count this season. Salmon fell behind 0-2 and eventually drilled a 1-2 pitch up the middle into centerfield, driving in Cabrera and Anderson, who slid under a late tag by Johjima on Reed's throw to the plate. Salmon broke past 1000 career RBIs on the hit.
»» ANGELS 3, MARINERS 1
Rivera poked the first pitch into centerfield for a single, easily scoring Guerrero and moving Salmon to second.
»» ANGELS 4, MARINERS 1
Quinlan grounded the second pitch hard to Beltre behind the bag at third, where he threw a bouncer to Sexson, who tagged Quinlan coming down the line. Washburn threw 30 pitches and had 59 through three.
Ibañez grounded out to first. Sexson fell behind 0-2 and poked a 2-2 single through the left-side hole. Everett drilled a 2-2 pitch into right for a single. Molina and Lackey had a short mound conversation. Beltre watched the first pitch get away from Molina, enabling Sexson and Everett to move to third and second. Beltre had the hitters' counts and took a 3-1 pitch that bounced past Molina again, enabling Sexson to score and Everett to move to third.
»» ANGELS 4, MARINERS 2
Beltre grounded a full-count pitch hard to Figgins, who couldn't come up with it cleanly, and Beltre beat out the throw to first as Everett scored. Yes, that's a rare RBI for Beltre.
»» ANGELS 4, MARINERS 3
Johjima worked a 1-2 count for a walk, or so everyone thought, so Molina came up throwing anyway on what was thought to be something moot. It turned into a strikeout with Beltre being caught stealing at third. Weird stuff which of course didn't go Seattle's way. Lackey threw 27 pitches and had 67 through four.
Molina tapped a 2-2 pitch back to the mound. Kendrick rolled the second pitch to short, but Betancourt threw wide past a stretching Sexson, who tried to dive to keep the ball from going into the dugout to no avail. Kendrick was given second on the error on Betancourt. Figgins grounded hard to second as Kendrick went to third. Cabrera was ahead 2-0 and wound up flying out to right on a full count. Washburn threw 17 pitches and had 76 through four.
Reed crushed the second pitch for a homer into the rightcenter seats, seven rows above the scoreboard.
»» ANGELS 4, MARINERS 4
Betancourt popped just short of the leftfield track. Ichiro bounced what would have been a great bunt if he was bunting, rolling it along the first-base line where Lackey had no chance to get Ichiro with a throw (that's a single). Lopez waited through a pitchout and some pickoff attempts on Ichiro and whiffed on a full-count breaking ball as Ichiro easily nabbed second. Ibañez chopped past the mound, where Cabrera had to move way over from short to get it, but couldn't handle it as Ibañez was safe and Ichiro went to third. Sexson just barely got under one, popping a 1-2 pitch to Anderson on the leftfield track. Lackey threw 23 pitches and had 90 through five.
Anderson rolled an 0-2 pitch to Lopez in shallow right (shift) and barely beat out the long throw. Guerrero reached another rare full count, bouncing to third as Anderson moved to second. Salmon popped a 1-2 pitch to the leftfield track (whew). Rivera popped the second pitch to fairly deep center. Washburn threw 18 pitches and had 94 through five.
Everett whiffed on a 0-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Beltre whiffed on an 0-2 breaking ball away in the dirt (vintage Beltre). Johjima worked a 1-2 count full before flying out to Guerrero in rightcenter. Lackey threw 12 pitches and had 102 through six.
Quinlan lined the second pitch deep into centerfield right at Reed, but over his head and to the wall for a double. Molina bunted the second pitch in front of the mound to Sexson, who charged in from first and looked to third before throwing back to Lopez covering first as Quinlan moved to third. Kendrick grounded to a drawn-in Betancourt at short, who threw straight home to easily get Quinlan by about five feet. Figgins singled into left on a 1-2 pitch, moving Kendrick to second. Mike Hargrove came to the mound with the hook.
Rafael Soriano came in for Washburn. Cabrera got ahead 3-0 and watched the runners advance without a throw on a 3-1 strike. Cabrera inadvertently fouled off a full-count pitch way inside before taking a slider up to load the bases. Anderson popped the second pitch high to Betancourt in shallow center. Soriano threw nine pitches.
Washburn's line: 5 2/3 innings, 4 runs, 9 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 105 pitches (72 strikes)
Reed bounced a 1-2 pitch to first (3-1 putout). Betancourt fell behind 0-2 and rolled a 2-2 pitch to third. Ichiro chopped a 1-2 pitch back to the mound. Lackey threw 15 pitches and had 117 through seven.
Lackey's line: 7 innings, 4 runs, 7 hits, 0 walks, 7 strikeouts, 117 pitches (80 strikes)
Guerrero fell behind 0-2, fouled off three 1-2 pitches, then flew out to Lopez on the infield. Salmon whiffed on a 1-2 pitch. Rivera dumped a single into centerfield. Quinlan fell behind 0-2 before poking a 1-2 slow single through the left side toward a deep-playing Ibañez, moving Rivera all the way to third. Pitching coach Rafael Chaves came to the mound for a visit. Adam Kennedy, hitting for Molina, rolled the second pitch into the left-side hole, where Lopez made the throw in time from the rightfield grass. Soriano threw 26 pitches and had 35 total.
Soriano's line: 1 1/3 innings, 0 runs, 2 hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 35 pitches (27 strikes)
Scot Shields came in for Lackey, Mike Napoli came in to catch, and Kennedy stayed in to play second. Lopez bounced a 1-2 pitch to second. Ibañez chopped an 0-2 pitch high to first (3-1 putout). Sexson was ahead 2-0 before whiffing on a full-count breaking ball. Shields threw 13 pitches.
Shields' line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 13 pitches (9 strikes)
Eddie Guardado came in for Soriano. Napoli foul-tipped an 0-2 pitch into Johjima's glove. Figgins was ahead 3-1 before poking a single on a full count just past the reach of Betancourt through the hole on the left side. Cabrera fell behind 0-2 and popped high to Sexson near the first-base coaches' box. Anderson tapped the first pitch back to the mound. Guardado threw
Guardado's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 15 pitches (11 strikes)
Francisco Rodriguez came in for Shields. Everett fell behind 0-2 before popping the 1-2 pitch to center. Beltre rolled the second pitch to short. Johjima poked the second pitch just past the reach of a diving Cabrera at short and into center for a single. Reed reached outside to loop a single into leftcenter, moving Johjima to second. Pitching coach Bud Black visited the mound. Willie Bloomquist came in to run for Johjima. Roberto Petagine, hitting for Betancourt, had the hitters' counts before grounding to second on a full count. Rodriguez threw 18 pitches.
JJ Putz came in for Guardado, Bloomquist stayed in to play short, and Rene Rivera came in to catch. Guerrero bounced the second pitch to short. Salmon worked an 0-2 count full before whiffing on a 94mph fastball over the outside corner. Rivera walked on four pitches. Quinlan popped the first pitch foul down the rightfield line but Ichiro couldn't quite get to it. Quinlan whiffed on an 0-2 pitch up and in. Putz threw 16 pitches.
Ichiro got ahead 3-0 before whiffing on a full-count fastball up in the zone and away. Lopez popped the second pitch to Guerrero in rightcenter. Ibañez fell behind 0-2 before bouncing a 1-2 pitch to second. Rodriguez threw 12 pitches and had 30 total.
Rodriguez' line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 2 hits, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 30 pitches (21 strikes)
Kennedy whiffed on an 0-2 offspeed pitch low over the outside corner. Napoli rolled to short. Figgins fisted a 1-1 pitch into shallow center with Reed and both middle infielders going out in pursuit, and Lopez dove backward for it as Bloomquist tried to race back to second to receive a throw, but he didn't get back to second in time and Figgins was safe. Cabrera lined an 0-2 pitch right to Lopez at second. Putz threw 14 pitches and had 30 total.
Putz' line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 1 hit, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts, 30 pitches (21 strikes)
Brendan Donnelly came in for Rodriguez. Sexson worked a 1-2 count full before whiffing on a pitch down and in. Everett fell behind 0-2 before lacing a single through the right side on a 1-2 pitch. Beltre was ahead 2-0 before fouling a 2-2 pitch into the catcher's glove. Bloomquist took a 1-2 pitch over the inside corner. Donnelly threw 21 pitches as he struck out the side.
Donnelly's line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 3 strikeouts, 21 pitches (14 strikes)
George Sherrill came in for Putz. Anderson popped out high to Ibañez in leftcenter. Guerrero whiffed on an 0-2 breaking ball in the dirt. Salmon whiffed on a 1-2 fastball up and away. Sherrill threw 14 pitches.
JC Romero came in for Donnelly. Reed got ahead 2-0 and later bounced to second. Rivera bounced the second pitch to first. Ichiro got ahead 3-1 before taking a full-count pitch very inside for a walk. Black visited the mound. Lopez rolled to second for a 4-6 putout of Ichiro. Romero threw 15 pitches.
Rivera dribbled a grounder to Lopez, except it went through his legs and under his glove into rightfield (error). Quinlan rolled a 1-2 pitch to short where Bloomquist stepped on second and threw to first, but Quinlan beat out the double play (Rivera was out). Kennedy walked on a high 3-1 pitch, moving Quinlan into scoring position at second as the winning run. Chaves came to the mound for a visit. Napoli got to the plate as my MLB.tv video froze, but the audio stayed on. From that point, I got stills for about a minute or so. Rivera had been nicked behind the plate on the first pitch and the trainers came out to ensure he could throw okay, and his first warmup toss hit Bloomquist on the thigh. Napoli popped to Reed in rightcenter on a 2-2 pitch, moving Quinlan to third. Figgins watched the first pitch as Kennedy inconsequentially stole second. Figgins wound up grounding a 2-2 pitch to Beltre on the left side, who threw in time to first to keep the game going. Whether that's good or not at this stage, it only is since I'm in Hawaii and the clock just struck 8pm. Sherrill threw 21 pitches and and had 35 total.
Sherrill's line: 2 innings, 0 runs, 0 hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, 35 pitches (23 strikes)
Ibañez got bounced a 2-0 pitch to second as KCOP must have kicked to a studio or had some sort of interview or something that didn't make it to MLB.tv feed.
Kevin Gregg came in for Romero. Sexson crushed a 3-1 pitch in front of the rockery just over the wall in leftcenter for his fourth homer of the season. I think everyone needed that. If the Angels tie it and this game goes into the 14th, I might throw something.
»» MARINERS 5, ANGELS 4
Everett worked a 1-2 count full before popping high to Rivera in shallow leftcenter. Beltre took a 1-2 fastball at the knees over the outside corner. Gregg threw 18 pitches.
Romero's line: 1 1/3 innings, 0 runs, 0 hits, 1 walk, 0 strikeouts, 18 pitches (9 strikes)
Gregg's line: 2/3 inning, 1 run, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 18 pitches (11 strikes)
Jake Woods came in for Sherrill. Cabrera got ahead 2-0 and fouled off four 2-2 pitches before whiffing on a breaking ball down and in. Anderson grounded a 3-1 pitch hard to Sexson diving hard away from the line, who jogged over to first for the out. Guerrero crushed a low first pitch about a foot from leaving the yard to rightcenter, and it went off the wall for a double. Salmon popped the second pitch to right.
Woods' line: 1 inning, 0 runs, 1 hit, 0 walks, 1 strikeout, 17 pitches (11 strikes)
Gameball: Carl Everett.
Whenever I end up picking Everett, it's kind of different since his only job is to hit, being the designated hitter and all. He went 3-for-6 in this game, raising his average from .230 to .242, the highest it's been since he opened the season 2-for-8 after two games. That's about a month and a half. I think if they had to put Everett in the field on defense for some reason, I'd tag him with a lot less gameballs because he'd more than likely be a zoo out there with the glove. Everett's biggest slump this year came in early- to mid-April, where he went hitless in the final four games of that Oakland series at home and followed it up by going 0-fer the first two games of the series in Cleveland. He has 16 hitless games on the season, compared to six multi-hit games. What I don't get is why they signed him in the first place, since in my opinion this isn't someone you add to the piece of the puzzle unless you're trying to win the World Series that year. With this set of Mariners, that would have required nobody getting injured, nobody screwing up, and a lot of people having career years. That's not this year.
Goat: Adrian Beltre.
So, this game went back to more of the same from our beleaguered high-paid third baseman who can defend the hell out of his position but can't hack it at the plate (or at least hack and get hits). All told, after this game on May 13th, he has 13 hits, which is only four less than his entire hit output for the month of April. He has four doubles so far in May, already three more than he had in all of April. He homered on Friday night, which matched his April output. His five May RBI are just one less than his April total. His 20 total bases in May are one less than his April total as well. To boil it down, he's hitting .265 this month (.189 in April), has an on-base percentage of .308 (.284), and is slugging at .408 (.233). Rome wasn't built in a day, and it's no reach to say Beltre can't be rebuilt in half a month either. Of course, he'll have to hide a game like this away where he was whiffing all day at the breaking ball off the plate outside. The only positive was that he did manage to make one out to rightfield. The bad thing is that as Everett was 3-for-6 in front of him, he was 0-for-6 and struck out for the hat trick.
Yr W-L Pct GB Stk
2001 29-9 .763 -- W6
2002 26-12 .684 3 L2
2003 24-14 .632 5 W2
2000 21-17 .553 8 W3
2006 16-22 .421 13 W1
2005 15-23 .395 14 L1
2004 13-25 .342 16 L2
The Mariners scored five runs, sure, but where did the three homers come from? Jeremy Reed, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Richie Sexson homering in the same game may never happen for the rest of the season. Did anyone bet on the trifecta of 7-3-44 to homer? Their three solo shots drove in 60% of the runs, needless to say. Jeremy Reed had another good game, adding another homer and another multi-hit game. Reed's batting average has bumped up 28 points over the last two games to .220. The two games have upped his slugging percentage 90 points to .378. Basically, he's 6-for-18 this month, hitting and getting on base at a .333 clip and slugging at .722. Sexson was 2-for-6 with his game-winning shot (he nearly had a second one) and hadn't homered in nearly two weeks. Sadly, it was only his third extra-base hit of a month in which he's only hitting .178. He has as many May strikeouts as May total bases. Aside from the two homers, Sexson is unfortunately having a Beltre-like month. With Betancourt, any homer coming out of the ninth slot in the lineup is a bonus, especially considering his stellar defense even with the wide throw for his third error of the season. Luckily that fourth-inning error didn't figure into the final score.
Needless to say, after Washburn left, which wasn't exactly late (he pretty much had one bad inning, though not a Piñeiro-like debacle from the night before), this was largely a bullpen effort. The Mariners' pen combined for 7 1/3 innings of five-hit shutout ball. They walked three and struck out eight. In the roles they had today, before extra innings were actually had, it appeared that Rafael Soriano was pitching in a role similar to Julio Mateo's role and that Eddie Guardado and JJ Putz traded roles. There were probably two times in the game in which I could have imagined a healthy Mateo, and they were right after Washburn had left the game, and probably to start the 10th or 11th innings. Let's just say it's a good thing Monday is an off day because the Mariner bullpen has thrown a combined 12 1/3 innings in the first two games of the series. The good news is that the off day is Monday. The bad news is that Gil Meche is starting the game on Sunday. To say the team needs Meche to at least get into the seventh isn't a stretch at all, but I don't know if that's a realistic expectation for him. Yes, it'll be a great day for erraticness.
Meche. Weaver. Today.