SEAside Thoughts: Mariners Vent Session & the Prince that was Promised?
"There are three types of baseball players: those who make it happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happens.”
SEAside Vent Session: Early Mariners thoughts
The Mariners are fully into the season now, heading to the Windy City at 4-6. While most fans are disappointed with the record after ten games (7 against Cleveland), there's still a lot left to be figured out from this club. While they've only played 1 great game, an 11-2 thumping of the Halos, they could easily be worse than 4-6.
While they haven't got their stride as a club, that doesn't mean warts haven't shown themselves. Through 10 games, the club has played as sloppy a brand of baseball as I have seen since 2019. Baserunning blunders, defensive errors, failure to make the right play. It's hard to listen to the broadcast praise our middle infield for trying when both JP Crawford and Kolten Wong have made numerous mistakes that have cost the team valuable runs early on. Teoscar Hernandez not catching that ball in the 9th inning brought every Rangers fan PTSD from the 2011 World Series with Nelson Cruz.
The bullpen, which had pitched great in the first two games in Cleveland, failed multiple times to hold 1 or 2 run leads when the team was an out away from winning. They won the series, but losing the season series to Cleveland could be a massive problem down the road. When Mariners pitching doesn't walk guys, they're dominant. When they do, they look awful, and that's what happened in the extra frames. An Injury to Andres Munoz put the bullpen in a tough spot, as did 12 innings, but that's one that got away because the depth of the bullpen couldn't execute when they needed to.
This isn't all on the players, as Scott Servais has not been at his best through the first 10 games of 2023. Odd bullpen choices, putting Teoscar in as a defensive replacement in the 9th, and losing the DH unnecessarily were really hard to watch. What killed me the most was how Scott failed at the end of Sunday's game. After intentionally walking Gimenez, Scott chose to go for the double play rather than load the bases. I get that Josh Bell has struggled to start the season, but if you walk him, you have a force at any base, and Brennan was coming up, a far less accomplished hitter.
Scott's slip up reared its ugly head as Cal Raleigh wasn't able to apply the tag in time to get Jose Ramirez, losing the game. That should have been a force out, and the game should have played on.
The Scott Servais/ Jerry Dipoto Mariners have thrived on beating you with defense, great pitching, and doing the little things to win the close games. We have not seen that this season, and it needs to return quickly. The Mariners will be facing a brutal stretch against the Brewers, Cardinals, Phillies and Blue Jays in a week. All those teams are thinking about the World Series, and could crush Seattle's hopes if the M's don't clean it up.
Vent Session over!