SEAside Thoughts: Mariners get a little revenge in series win over Astros
"I hate the Astros so much"
The Mariners were down to their final strike in Toronto. J.P Crawford was one mistake away from Seattle falling to 11-17 and being swept by the Blue Jays. Instead, Crawford was able to not only keep the Mariners alive, but change the course of the season. It hasn't been the prettiest of baseball this week, but Seattle had an impressive week going 5-1 and getting back to .500.
Mariners over Athletics: The ugliest sweep ever?
After the massive comeback in Toronto, the Mariners went back to being offensively inept against Oakland, a team trying their hardest to lose.
In game 1, the Mariners were down 1-0 and five outs away from being no hit before A.J. Pollock hit a home run and Kelenic's double stole the opener. Down to their final two outs in game 2, Pollock played hero again with a moon shot to help get Seattle to extra innings. From there, Geno hit a 3 run shot and the M's pulled away 7-2. Game 3 was a little more comfortable, as George Kirby carried Seattle to the sweep with a 5-3 win.
A team with World Series aspirations probably shouldn't struggle with Oakland as much as Seattle did, but they got the job done and that's all that matters.
Mariners Debut Jerseys: City Connect(ion)
With Houston coming into town for as important of an early May series as you can get, the emotions from October returned. The sweep, the 18 inning war, the way Houston treated Seattle after…all the venom was there.
Under the new, and lovable jerseys (pants are fine), the Mariners battled Houston and had a great shot to win late. Unfortunately, a horrendously missed strike 3 call for Matt Brash gave Tucker a meatball slider that he didn't miss, and Houston spoiled a special night 6-4.
As disappointing as Friday was, Saturday was magic. A strong outing by the Bulldog kept Seattle close, but down 3-0 with 2 outs in the 8th, some Mariners magic happened.
Crawford: Double (Suarez, Raleigh, Teo score)
Caballero: Double (Trammell scores,Crawford scores)
Rodriguez: Single (Callabero scores)
Kelenic: Single (Rodriguez scores)
We may go a few years before we ever see a sequence like that again. The Mariners put a big fat 7 on the Astros and would go on to take the game, and the series win, on Sunday.
This was such an important series for the Mariners. Houston may not be the team they've been in recent years, but the moment was important and mattered to the team and the city. Massive crowds, a new look…it was a big moment where Seattle needed to change the vibes and reward the fanbase that stayed with them for 18 innings a few months ago. When Seattle wins 93 games and the AL West in October, remember this series as a turning point.
It's (Bryce) Miller Time!
In the short term, this week was a huge success. In the long-term future, the arrival of Bryce Miller has brought a whole new wave of excitement. In his first two outings, Miller had gone 12 innings giving up just one run on 4 hits with only 1 walk to go with 15 strikeouts. His ability right now to throw 97mph and put it wherever he wants is just devastating for the hitters.
So far he looks calm, ready for the moment, and is pitching like a top of the rotation guy Seattle hoped he'd turn into in a few seasons. In his next three scheduled starts, Miller will be facing the Tigers, Braves, and Athletics again. We should get a good idea of whether this is just a hot start, or something special in the next two weeks. It's a lot to ask of a young prospect, but if he can even keep 80% of this up, it could give this team the boost they need, as well as not make starting pitching a priority at the trade deadline.
What's on deck for the Mariners?
While the Houston series was a big win for Seattle, the Mariners now welcome to town the division leading 20-13 Texas Rangers.
The Rangers have been an offensive machine this season, ranking in the top 5 of nearly every offensive category. The M's will have Logan Gilbert, George Kirby, and Luis Castillo to try and silence the Texas bats. With Seattle 3.5 games back, a series win at home feels like a must, while a sweep could really get the vibes rolling.
This team has dealt with a lot of injuries and disappointing starts, but to be where they are right now, M's fans should be feeling hopeful.