Sorry it took me so long to post my thoughts on this, I have been traveling the past 2 days.
Well… that happened.
I was traveling while this game occurred so I have to be honest, I didn’t watch it. I think that gives me an interesting take on the whole thing as I was not a part of the eye gouging so I can give an outsiders take. Philip Humber, while at one time or another was highly regarded, is not a great pitcher. I couldn’t care less with how well Humber was pitching, this game was unacceptable.
The Mariners are not a good baseball team. That is not to say they will be a bad baseball team forever or even for the rest of the season, but as of right now the Mariners are a playing like a laughably bad baseball team. In a way this was bound to happen. These past few years have been rough and what is perhaps most frustrating is that the Mariners were supposed to be better this year. The Mariners young core was suppose to develop and the offense was supposed to improve. Dustin Ackley wasn’t supposed to struggle, Smoak was supposed to get off to a bounding start, Mike Carp and Franklin Gutierrez were supposed to be healthy. The Mariners were supposed to support Felix. If the Mariners were going to get no-hit, shouldn’t it have come in any other year? Shouldn’t it have come against one of those horrifically assembled Bavasi teams? Why now? Why when the Mariners are supposed to be better do they succumb to this?
I cannot even begin to fathom an answer.
This talent behind this team is unquestionable. Smoak, Montero, Ackley, Carp, all have shown flashes of greatness and the unlocked potential within each is one of the few aspects of hope that a Mariner fans can hold onto. Felix is already there, he is one of the best pitcher in baseball and his talent is being squandered by a team that has not supported him. Ichiro is there as well, being one of the best pure hitters ever to play since coming over from Japan.
So what then, is going on? You could argue that the only purely terrible offensive player on this team is Miguel Olivo. The supporting cast, while improperly utilized and flawed, is rather decent.
Brendan Ryan is a flawed hitter, but manages to put together a more than acceptable season at the plate and his defense more than makes up for any dissatisfaction at the plate.
Kyle Seager has been superb thus far and is making folks wonder if he may be the utility player of the future. His bat is much better than many believed it ever could be and no giant red flags have been noted with regards to his defense.
John Jaso has been John Jaso. Champion of Nolivo and trending fan favorite.
Figgins while still not great, has begun to show signs of life and playing him at multiple position gives the roster added flexibility and depth.
Michael Saunders may not be suited for an everyday role. But his improvements have been duely noted and while his game is still flawed, a 4th or 5th outfielder role shouldn’t be out of the question.
Casper Wells, probably the best supporting piece on the roster, is completely underutilized. Wells plays excellent defense and stores some much needed pop in his bat. Wells has been a managerial pariah for reasons unknown and thus lead to his weighted time on the bench. Wells talents are undeniable, they just have yet to been used.
So could this team stand to upgrade a few positions? Yes, certainly. The Mariners could find upgrades for several of the supporting cast, but this still doesn’t scream of a crew that would be victim to a perfecto. This team is flawed, but not that terrible.
So what is wrong with this team? I still couldn’t begin to answer it. They certainly have a problem swinging at pitches out of the zone, they have series issues drawing the free pass, and even with the addition of Smoak, Montero, Carp, and Wells, this team still struggles to hit the long ball. But these items are not enough to justify why this team has struggled so mightily at times. I’ve been through a lot under the banner of a Mariners fan, but this probably goes down in the top 5. I should be able to laugh at this, afterall that is how I have handled crushing defeat in the past. Maybe later in the season I might be able to. But right now in the moment, I find this unbearable. I am well aware of the flaws that plague this team and I am well aware of their limitations, but this one just burns like peroxide to an open sore. My fandom is never going to be in question, but my faith took a beating. A Jack Zduriencik Seattle Mariners team had a perfect game thrown against them… by Philip Humber. This twisted knot in my innards is going to be here for quite some time.