Saturday, July 10, 2010
[actual post Wed 14 Jul ~8:17p; due to extensive traveling, finished this piece the day after the All-Star Game.]
Let's be honest. Once the Cliff Lee deal went down in the hours before game time, this game became a complete afterthought. The only not directly involving the trade was who the Mariners were going to send to the mound to start in Cliff Lee's spot. Though they called up Luke French from Tacoma to take the vacated spot on the 25-man roster, they pulled David Pauley from the bullpen to make the start on two days' rest. He really didn't do badly at all. The offense, however, remained hapless long enough to where the bullpen eventually put the game out of reach.
-- the starting pitching will be addressed in the gameballs
-- the bullpen...not good. Chad Cordero lit the game ablaze with his performance in the sixth inning after taking over for David Pauley. He was charged with two runs, but came into the game with two runners aboard, and they scored as well, helping inflate the ERA of Pauley. Luke French then came in and mopped up the final three innings, giving up one run in the process.
-- the bullpen rest bulletin: Cordero and French threw in this game. Going into Saturday's game, Brian Sweeney and David Aardsma will have a day of rest, Brandon League and Garrett Olson will have two days of rest, and Sean White will have three days of rest.
-- the offense? They got nine hits, but they were pretty scattered. The Mariners ran into the real Phil Hughes this time around. He wasn't the aberration that got clobbered in the Bronx when the Mariners last faced him. Talk about scattering the hits, the Mariners got six hits off Hughes, and four of those hits were doubles. Still, the Mariners managed just the one run, which they didn't get until they were down by a margin of 5-0. Pathetic.
-- now, the Ichiro/Figgins stat. Ichiro was scoreless with two hits, and Figgins got a hit and scored one. The Mariners remain 11-6 when both players score, but are now 16-27 when both players get hits.
1) David Pauley
For an emergency start on two days' rest, he was great. Things didn't get out of control until he left the game, so his outing still looks good. It also looks better thanks to a Jose Lopez error, which made two of Pauley's three runs unearned.
The Mariners' leadoff hitter went 2-for-4 in the game, pushing him to 116-for-354 (.328) on the season. This leaves him on pace to finish the season with 219 hits. His first hit of the game with a single with Jack Wilson on first and one out in the third inning. His other hit was a leadoff single in the eighth, though the Yankees had pulled away by that point.
3) Rob Johnson
How often do you get zero passed balls, zero wild pitches, and two hits in the boxscore with Rob Johnson? Not too often, but that's what happened here. Of course, that doesn't mean this game added up to anything close to a win, but you take the positives were you can. Since it's been nine years since this team's made the playoffs, we've had ample time to get used to the little things in baseball since we can't seem to get accustomed to winning.
From about June 4th to July 4th, he was on a pretty steady decline, but still getting some hits here and there. In that span, he dropped from a .294 average to a .277 average, hitting a not-good .247 in the month of June. In the last five games, he's completely hitless, going 0-for-19. That's a pretty good reason the offense is awful lately. Granted, he's batting lower in the order than third now, but he's still an important cog to the offense, and if he's not getting on base, that's a problem. He's 3-for-31 so far in July. I guess he hasn't been the same since that stomach flu he suffered on the road trip that cost him a couple of starts. Surely he can't still be suffering from it, right? That was about two weeks ago. As long as this is less scary than the Carlos Guillen tuberculosis thing, that's good. I doubt stomach flu will spread through the team. It's not like in hockey, where you have to get really careful with the water bottles if someone on the team has the flu. A flu sweeping through a hockey team can put you on a good losing streak.
Vazquez. Hernandez. [it already happened].