Recently, Eric Wedge said that he was feeling quite confident about the upcoming 2013 season. It’s so easy to want to believe in the Seattle Mariners. After all, there is something very charming about rooting for the underdog. The team hasn’t been to the World Series yet, but they’ve been AL West champions three times – 1995, 1997, 2001. There’s a strong yearning from us fans to see the team do well and go all the way. The thing is, it’s hard to feel optimistic about the team whe there are so many players who are either youthful hopefuls or formerly great hitters. Yes we have “King” Felix Hernandez, but at the same time, one has to wonder how it is the team will come together this year. Will it be like when the Oakland Athletics came together to become the AL West champions in 2012 or will the team fizzle out over the course of the season?
I, for one, am optimistic. While there is a disparity in skill levels between team members, I think that there’s a good chance the team will be able to congeal. Call me sentimental, but I love to cheer on a good underdog team – when I was in grad school at Northern Illinois University, I cheered on the Cubs after all.
It’s not like the Mariners have been putting together a weak team. After all, they have several proven hitters that they’ve scored during the duration of the off season. Jason Bay, Raul Ibanez, and Michael Morse may still have a few good seasons left in them. The young guys may bloom. There are a lot of unknowns. The question remains as to whether or not the team can pull it together and look like a team enough to pull off some serious wins this season. The farm system has been ranked number two in the leagues. They have a good system. They just need to make use of it, pull their guys together, and put together a team that will be cohesive.
What do you think? Are you feeling confident about the 2013 season? If not, what do you think the team needs to do so that you can feel confident in the Mariners?