SeaSide Thoughts: 5 reasons to still believe in the Mariners

As the Mariners try to right the ship, we look at 5 encouraging signs that show the Mariners will still be a contender this season.
Cincinnati Reds v Seattle Mariners
Cincinnati Reds v Seattle Mariners / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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The core can't possibly be this bad for long 

While Jorge Polanco and Mitch Haniger have carried the offense and kept this team afloat through 17 games, this team will go nowhere if the core can't wake up.

The quartet of JP Crawford, Julio Rodriguez, Cal Raleigh, and Mitch Garver, the expected core of this team's offense, are hitting under .200 combined and have combined for just 4 home runs with Garver and Julio sitting on awkward goose eggs in that department.

In Seattle’s 3-1 victory, there were small signs of progress for what looks like a humbled group so far. Crawford had 2 hits and was robbed of another. Raleigh had 2 walks and Garver added a BB that produced the game-winning run.

Julio not only had two hits but had arguably the best defensive game of his career, making incredible catches and making the game-saving assist in the 7th inning when it looked like the Reds were about to tie the game up. 

These are not clear indications that an offensive explosion is on the horizon, but it's baby steps. The hits and the walks are all signs that these four are starting to see the ball better and are baby steps to better confidence and belief that the cold start is thawing out. 

Don't be surprised if we see the power and production return in excess when the team plays in Colorado in what appears to not be terrible weather (71° on Sunday), and the offense wakes up just in time for battles against the Texas Rangers and Atlanta Braves.