SEAside Thoughts: Mariners Week 2 in Review
“A sailor’s joys are as simple as a child’s.”
― Bernard Moitessier, Sailor
- Matt Brash is special. We were fortunate enough to get to watch him pitch twice this week. Both times, he looked like the most talented “thrower” in the series. His stuff is absolutely electric, but I was even more impressed with his confidence and ability to get out of tight situations. As he evolves from a thrower into a pitcher, he’s going to be a top of the rotation player, something the Mariners are looking like they may have a few of.
- What the MLB and the umpiring crew did to the Mariners in Robbie Ray’s start at Chicago was criminal. The Mariners defense was forced to play on the field in the middle of a monsoon. As ROOT Sports Angie Mentink tweeted out, when the White Sox were on the field, their grounds crew raced to make the field respectable. When Seattle took the field? A Slip-N-Slide. I believe Seattle wins that game if there was a rain delay, even if Ray would have been done early.
- Mariners struggled through cold and windy weather in the Midwest but survived for a 3-4 start, against a respectable Twins squad and a really good White Sox team. Good experience as to what a game in a place like Chicago could look like in October.
- That was the most impressive and enjoyable home opener in years. Without a doubt, a statement win the Mariners needed. The crowd was rocking, the lineup was patient but purposeful, bleeding the Astros pitching with 8 walks, and 13 base hits, while hanging 11 runs on the board.
- I told you not to worry about Marco. He’s a bulldog who showed that he was ready for the big moment. His change-up was the best I’ve ever seen from him. If he can throw that pitch consistently, he’ll be one of the best #3 pitchers in the league.
- Justin Verlander is still very good at throwing a baseball. The former MVP and Cy Young winner looks like he’s 29, not 39. Coming off Tommy John surgery and missing most of the past two seasons, Verlander completely owned the Mariners. He threw eight innings of shutout baseball, with seven strikeouts on only 87 pitches in the 4-0 win. His being dominant can help keep the Astros in the title hunt. Houston’s pitching remains elite with Verlander, Garcia, and Valdez still rolling. Their offense, however, doesn’t look the same anymore, especially the “Boo King” Jose Altuve. He got punked constantly by the M’s pitching and the fans. You hate to see it…
- Adam Frazier continues to look like Pittsburgh Frazier rather than San Diego Frazier. That’s 2-0 for those counting at home. Check back next week for the “Which Frazier is he?” update.
- Ty France is a beast. I told you so.
- Come back soon Mitch!
- Winker is unlucky and frustrated. He should probably have three home runs by now but has nothing to show for it. He’s getting on base, leading the league in walks. The power numbers will come, and if he keeps having an elite batter’s eye, he’ll end up in Los Angeles for the all-star game.
- Jarred Kelenic and Julio Rodriguez both look to be in much better places at the end of the week than at the beginning. JK has a laser shot that thankfully banged off the right-field pole for a home run on Wednesday in Chicago, to help the M’s salvage one game in the series. Both made great defensive catches in front of the home crowd, earning loud cheers that they both probably really needed. Then each of them responded with good games and at bats on Sunday. They’re still each a work in progress, but I believe they’re focused, and here to stay.
- RIP to Louie Louie
- The Mariners are 5-5 with a +4 run differential. They’ve played six games against two of the better teams in the American League, going 3-3. Considering the weather, the opposition, Verlander, and Covid, I’m stoked to see Seattle in the position they’re in. A rest day at home Monday, with Ray Day on Tuesday to kick off six more games at home against the less talented Texas Rangers and the Kansas City Royals. Take it to them, get over .500, and never look back.
- This week’s “Mariners Music Mojo” is Louie Louie by The Kingsmen
As always… GO M’S!