SEAside Thoughts Week 22: Mariners Become “That” Team
Mariners SEAside Thoughts: Week 22
“I’m damn proud to be a Seattle Mariner.”
Ken Griffey Jr.
- “That” team
- You hear it every year, in every sport. As the playoffs approach, there’s always “that” one team that nobody wants to see in the playoffs.
- The St. Louis Cardinals are a good example of this in the National League. A team filled with stars in their prime, mixed with three Hall of Famers (Pujols, Molina, Wainwright) all looking to ride off into the sunset. Those three have a history of not going quietly into the night, and I’d expect nothing less in their final October showdown.In the American League, your Seattle Mariners are “that” team, and you should be excited!
- This is not a team of prime MVP stars and aging veterans. No, this is one of the youngest teams in baseball, that is getting better and stronger by the day, and is coming to break the curse and get the Mariners deep into October.
- We know the Yankees and Guardians want nothing to do with the Mariners, and you have to think the Astros aren’t blind to what may be waiting for them in a potential ALDS matchup.
- 2022 M’s v 2012 Hawks
- Some people hate to hear the comparisons and I get it, but there’s no denying this run by the Mariners and the similarities to that first great Seahawks team under Pete Carroll.
- That Seahawks team had just come off of multiple losing seasons, but with the help of a rookie and some youthful talent coming through, the Hawks became “that” team in the final half of the season. Going 7-1 after starting 4-4, the Hawks won a road playoff game, and came within 25 seconds of beating the NFC’s top seed.
- While the Seahawks didn’t win it all, they set the tone that they were coming for the crown. They accomplished their goal the next season. I can’t wait to see what the Mariners have in store this postseason.
- The dominance of the central
- The Mariners have been pretty dominant over the past two weeks, taking their game to the next level against the AL Mid…I mean Central.
- In 7 games against the Guardians and 3 against the lowly Tigers, the Mariners have gone a blistering 9-1. The Mariners will now race home to take on the suddenly hot Chicago White Sox in a big series. Here’s to hoping the Mariners continued to dominate the Mid…I mean Central.
- The broadcast crew
- I have two thoughts here. First, I hope Mike Blowers is ok. It has been a really long time since we’ve seen him on the broadcast, and it seems to be a mystery as to why. Blowers has been through so many rough seasons, I hope to hear him talk about these special Mariners.
- My second thought is that the overall quality of the broadcast booth has been phenomenal this season. Blowers, Sims, and Goldsmith seem to understand the moment and are bringing a level of energy this year that has made this season feel different.
- Shout-out to Dan Wilson and Ryan Rowland-Smith as well. They have been fantastic fill-ins calling the game from unique positions that we don’t always get. Seattle is lucky to have the talent they have talking baseball to M’s fans each summer.
- Ty and the offense power up
- Last week we saw the spark of the return of Ty France. This week, we saw the MVP potential that France has when he brings some thunder to the plate. From the final game at home against Cleveland to today, France is batting .355 with 4 home runs and 8 runs batted in.
- Not only does that work, but I just feel like when he’s humming, the offense hits another gear.
- We saw a surge in power for both Julio and Cal, with Mitch and Suarez being productive at the plate. This core, when healthy and clicking, is something to behold. The Mariners have not had more than three batters with an OPS+ of 120 in a season, and this squad is pushing to have five.
- To put that into perspective, traditionally, you only see teams that make the League Championship Series and World Series with at least 5 OPS + 120 players. This squad is knocking on that door.
- The arrival of Cal Raleigh is something we’ve gushed over a ton in the SEAside Thoughts. Mike Salk of Seattle Sports is also taking note.
- In a recent tweet, Salk praised Cal’s resolve, while also noting that Cal is THREE years younger than Jarred Kelenic. Kelenic has had a brutal introduction to the Show, and it feels like he is on his way out of town this winter.
- While that may still be the case, there’s still a path where Seattle and Kelenic realize the potential of greatness he has, and Seattle is in an even better spot for domination come 2023 and beyond.
- The Seattle Mariners head home for a huge homestand against some of the most talented teams in all of baseball. They do so as an equal to them, and that is just an incredible feeling as a fan. Your Mariners are a game up on the top Wildcard spot and have a 4.5-game lead, plus the tiebreaker advantage over Baltimore for the final playoff spot. What a time to be alive.
- This week’s SEAside Thoughts Player of the Week is a tie between Ty France and Cal Raleigh. These dudes are wearing out the Bombet hat, crushing a combined 8 fingers and 17 RBIs during the road sweep.
- This week’s Mariners Music Mojo is Stolen Love by Josiah and the Bonnevilles.
- Go get it M’s!