Seattle Mariners: 3 Things That We Learned Last Night
The Mariners didn’t let their feet of the gas in last night’s 8-1 route of the Los Angeles Angels. The win was the team’s sixth straight. It also brought them one game closer to that final Wild Card Spot. Here’s three things we learned last night in the process.
What a beautiful night it was in Los Angeles for the streaking Mariners. A combination of stellar pitching and impeccable hitting allowed the Mariners to cruise to victory. The win included some curious and unusual plays that had the hometown faithful chuckling and/or scratching their heads. But that didn’t stop us from enjoying the sweet taste of victory for the sixth straight game.
Here are three things that we learned last night.
Leonys Martin Hit His Stride
Since his day off a few games back, Martin has been on a mini-tear. In the two games after his rare rest, he has tallied six hits, four doubles and three runs. This has resulted in a significant spike in his batting average, which had risen nine points in that span. Most of this tremendous success came in last night’s victory.
His three consecutive doubles (hit in the second, fourth and seventh) set a new personal best. His four hits were a career-tying mark, although the other doesn’t hold the same wait because he had
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six chances in fourteen innings.
But it wasn’t all about his bat last night. Martin put on a great performance in center. He chased down a handful of balls, recording five put-outs, tying his fifth highest total this year. Martin also made a great catch, narrowly avoiding Nori Aoki to end the bottom of the sixth.
Martin is just one more Mariner that has flashed his capabilities during the win streak. But for him, it must feel good. He’s been waiting to have a breakout game. He didn’t even want to take that day off to potentially get it. Well, now he’s got it, and hopefully there’s more to come in the next couple weeks.
Miranda Is The Mariners Next Ace?
Ariel Miranda continued to push his case to be a regular in the Mariners future rotation. His six innings of three hit, shutout ball arguably were the best of his career. He was cool, calm and collected, even when facing Mike Trout, who held to 0-3 on the evening.
The start was his second straight while giving up no runs and pitching six frames, earning two quality starts. Yet, he’s been quality for most of this season as a starter. In six of his seven games where he has taken the mound at the beginning of the game, he has not allowed more than three runs.
With a low-nineties fastball, that by no means is blowing anyone away, he has used his off-speed pitches to fool opposing batters. Last night in particular, they looked especially tricky. And
Although he kept the majority of his pitches in the zone, he managed only one walk. It seems as though Miranda is itching to prove his worth.Yesterday, even more so. Let’s hope he continues to dazzle the rest of the year and picks up his brilliance at the start of next year.
Cano Has Trouble Counting?
Last night, Robinson Cano hit his career-tying thirty-third home run of the year. With eighteen games left to play, there’s an 99% chance he’ll set a new personal best before the season’s end. He also had three total hits. It was just the thirteenth time that Cano had three-plus hits in game all season. But with all the good, there’s got to be some bad, or in this case, bizarre.
In the bottom of the third, with runners on the corners and TWO outs, Cole Calhoun grounded out. It was a force play where Ketel Marte tossed the ball to Cano to end the inning. Whether Cano realized the out count is unclear. What we do know is that he rifled the ball over to Dae-Ho Lee, which would’ve also gotten Calhoun out, but the inning was already over.
The play received an amused, but surly confused reaction from Dave Sims in the announcers booth. He couldn’t hold back his laughter as he called the play before the game cut to commercial. The incident also sparked a slightly mocking reaction from Twitter. Here are some examples:
Cano wasn’t the only one doing unusual things last night. The recently called up Dan Vogelbach also was off a step in his debut. In the ninth inning, Vogelbach got the opportunity millions of people wish for in their life, to play a major league baseball game.
Just like any job, when you get your big break, the one thing anyone will tell you is, “don’t mess up”. Well the nerves must have gotten to the rookie because, he messed up.
He was able to reach base on a fielder’s choice, which is one of the least glorifying was to do so, especially in your first career at-bat at the big show. Nevertheless, he had a chance to make an impact.
Instead, the very next batter, Kyle Seager, tried to move him along the base paths, but as Vogelbach rounded second, on his way to third, he forgot one thing: to touch the bag. He was subsequently called out for his misstep, ending his very brief debut.
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I could only imagine the joking that has taken place in the locker room since then. Not only to be fresh meat to pick on, but then to mess up on your first shot in the majors. Oh man. The Mariners know the he’s not the kind of player that will make too many errors like last night, afterall, that is why they traded for him.