It’s been a heck of a year for the Seattle Mariners. Like really, a heck of a year. The team has had so much happen. They have been hampered with injuries. They somehow are still just two games under .500 and just 3.5 out of the second wild card spot.
That said, this isn’t one of those articles where I go optimistic and tell you all that if things go right this team could find their way to the postseason. I’ve said this Mariners team isn’t a playoff team for a while, and I’m going to talk about that right now.
No playoff team has a rotation where the best pitcher is an average #3 and the worst pitcher is a AAA #5.
No playoff team has just one .300 hitter in their lineup.
No playoff team breaks the record for most pitchers used in a season. The Mariners could field exactly one whole 40-man roster in just pitchers they’ve used this season.
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The Mariners have a team FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) of 4.83. The 1962 New York Mets had a FIP of 4.59. Just so you realize, the ’62 Mets went 42-120. Now FIP is a little bit of an unfair stat, because obviously, Jerry Dipoto built a team that has good defense too. The pitchers could rely on their fielders, that said, the pitching has truly been awful this year.
No playoff team can stand pat at the trade deadline while every team around them gets better.
No playoff team can sustain 6 losing streaks of four games or longer.
Yet this team is still here. They’re still around. “It’s still mathematically possible,” as some would say.
The team is one of the grittiest, most enjoyable Mariner teams that has existed in recent years. As an 18-year-old who’s spent 13+ years as a fan, I’ve witnessed, year in and year out the feeling of disappointment. After getting swept by the Astros and not just swept, but after full-on drowning in ineptitude, this year we’ve reached that point.
And honestly, I couldn’t be happier.
Most of the time, when the season ends I feel this sense of hopelessness. Obviously every year my optimism returns, but this year, it feels different. Not that 2018 will be different, but this team would’ve been great had they just not had to deal with so many of the injuries.
With the acquisition of Leake and the possible re-signing of Yonder Alonso plus a healthy rotation and pen, next year may actually be better for the Mariners. Now we’ll just have to see what happens in the offseason. We’ll have to hope things go right, but you know, let’s just see. Dipoto may just have built this team into something legitimate.