Mariners SEAside Thoughts: Week 7
“There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.”
— Willa Cather, American Writer
- After an impressive and unexpected series win last weekend in Queens, there was hope and optimism about the Seattle Mariners as they headed to the AL East. It didn’t go well…
- Seattle, Toronto, and Boston were probably three of the teams with the most worrisome starts in the American League through the first month-plus. By Sunday, both the Blue Jays and Red Sox are now both in the thick of the playoff race thanks to Seattle’s woes.
- While they may not be thinking about the playoffs right now, these losses could really hurt the Mariners if they get back into the race this summer. Unlike in years past, there are no game 163’s anymore. Tiebreakers are part of baseball now, and Seattle has lost the head-to-head tiebreakers already to the Tampa Bay Rays, the Red Sox, and are in danger of losing the tiebreaker to the Blue Jays.
- In what may end up being the most difficult road trip of the season, Seattle went 3-7 and has fallen to 17-25. The magic from that incredible opening homestand seems like a distant memory.
- The pitching has been average, to slightly above average. I thought that Marco Gonzalez and Logan Gilbert each pitched well this week. Robbie Ray can’t shake the bad inning. Seattle desperately needs Ray to be the shutdown ace that they signed him to be; they’re just not getting it right now.
- The offense continues to look flat, having one or two good innings then going silent into the night.
- If the Boston series was a chance to showcase the future of the Mariners to potential free agent Xander Bogarts…oof.
- J.P. Crawford is not a #3 hitter. Put him back down in the lineup where he can extend it, giving it a little more balance.
- I want to see Julio batting first or second. He and Frazier should be starting off the game. I think that’s a great duo that can give France more runners in scoring positions. Times are tough right now with injuries and below average replacements, so they need to manufacture as many runs as possible.
- Julio continues to look so impressive. Him being so good in May while the M’s have been so bad was not on my 2022 Seattle Mariners bingo card.
- Paul Sewald is a beast. He feels like a legitimate weapon out of that bullpen, and it’s more evident than ever considering how rough the rest of the bullpen has looked. I hope he’s a player that stays in Seattle long-term.
- I said times are tough. Like, signing Justin Upton tough. I’ve always been a fan of the Upton brothers, and I’m curious if Justin has anything left in the tank.
- The Upton signing is a “what-if” history lesson for Mariners fans. A decade ago, the Mariners had a deal in place to aqcuire the young and talented hitter, whose stay in Arizona was beginning to stale. Upton, however, used his no-trade clause to reject Seattle. Upton was Jack Z’s unacquired big piece to further his rebuild, a rebuild that continues to this day.
- I believe the Upton signing is also a clear signal that Seattle doesn’t expect Jarred Kelenic to be coming back to the big leagues anytime soon. If he’s not back in Seattle by the All-Star break, we need to seriously consider the future and his role in it with this ball club.
- Despite all the concerns, and they’re fair, this season is not over. There’s about fifty games between now and the All-Star game. More than half of those games are against teams under .500, and 14 of those 50 games are against the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Angels. The “sky is falling” and the “have patience” crowds need not to quarrel. By the Mid-Summer Classic, Seattle’s position and short-term future will be clear.
- The Mariners need to get healthy, get a spark on offense, and fight back with the favorable schedule and opportunities against the AL West elite. The time is now, or else they’ll be selling good players in two months.
- This week’s “Mariners Music Mojo” is Blood Runs Red by Matt Maeson.