5 Ways the Mariners Can Make the Playoffs in 2018

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 01: Carlos Correa
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 01: Carlos Correa /
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2. The Bullpen is Elite. Not good. ELITE.

ATLANTA, GA – AUGUST 23: Edwin Diaz
ATLANTA, GA – AUGUST 23: Edwin Diaz /

On paper, the Mariners figure to have one of the better bullpens in the American League. While not on par with the super pen of the Yankees, it can be reasonably argued that the Mariners ‘pen ranks right up their with anybody elses, including the Indians and Astros.

This is fantastic news, considering the current plan seems to be ultra dependent on the ‘pen staying healthy. This plan took a small step back with the announcement that David Phelps will miss the entire season with a torn UCL.

The bullpen should still be solid. Fangraphs projects them to be worth 3.5 fWAR. For context, they project the Yankees ‘pen to be worth 7 wins and the Astros to be worth 5.5 wins.

With a projected record of 80-82, the Mariners will need to match the Yankees bullpen projections to 84 wins. Already a tall task, but at 84 wins, the Mariners would be right on the cusp of contention.

Fangraphs currently projects the Mariners to have the 5th best bullpen in the AL, which is great. But if they want to find their way into the playoffs in 2018, they need more than “great”. They need elite.