May 17, 2007

O Mariners

What to say about last night's roundly disappointing loss to the Angels? Which was worse: the bullpen's uncharacteristic blowing of a tight contest, or the offense's humiliating choke with Halo hurler Lackey near to crumbling in the 6th?

I'll go with the offense. Guillen waved at ball 4, which would've forced in a run, halving the lead. But no. Lackey's slider, never near the strike zone, hit dirt--paydirt--as Guillen fanned, and Napoli somehow found the ball to put the force on Ichiro. That was it for the M's, who meekly surrendered nine more outs to the Angel bullpen.

The bright spot: Cha Seung Baek, again. The guy's tenacious.

I'm fairly sure our pen's effort was a hiccup--but our constant inconstancy, both from our offense and starting pitching, is intensely frustrating. We could handily be eight or nine games above .500, in first by a good margin.


TeacherRefPoet said...

You say: "We could handily be eight or nine games above .500, in first by a good margin."

You're dreaming. We've been outscored 161-175 this year, which should yield a record of 16-19. Instead, we're 18-17. Two games lucky.

I like the improvement, but we're still a slow singles-hitting team with three #5 starters. And our two unbenchable starters, Beltre and Sexson, will prevent us from being a .635 team (which would be 9 over .500 right now...22-13) as long as they're taking the field every day. I think Beltre might be able to straighten things out, but I'm through with Sexson.

Dang. Quinlan singles, and we're down 5-1. Looks like we'll be .500 again, three games out. We're pretenders, I'm afraid, but at least we're more fun than we've been since '02.

Jim Anderson said...

Obviously the runs against are also a big part of the difficulty we're facing--my dream also involves consistent starting pitching from Ramirez and Weaver and Washburn, who've all been the recipients of both bad breaks and self-imposed crappiness.

It's so easy to blame Richie Sexson, too. Last night he pooped with the bases loaded, and Guillen's strikeout on that errant slider ended up blowing a potential game-changing rally. Tonight, same deal: bases loaded, game still tight, and Sexson weakly grounds out as he so often has. In my dream, Sexson contributes in a non-groundout fashion.

Meanwhile, tonight the runs we gave up were due to Broussard's obvious defensive weakness in left field--thanks to Ibanez's injury, he did his best Manny Ramirez impression--and some weak bloopers that really couldn't be helped.

I can't count how many times we've come up just short of winning, with late rallies or a dozen stranded runners. Maybe we wouldn't be eight or nine up, but at least five or six.

I dream. And then Ibanez, pinch-hitting, strikes out, and I wake up.

TeacherRefPoet said...

We're coming up just short because we're just not very good. I don't think luck is relevant this year; the luck has actually been on our side. We're overachieving, not underachieving.