Today’s game and Niehaus
I spent my day doing plumbing work on my house, so I listened to most of the game on the radio, and a couple things occurred to me as I installed a new toilet, and so forth:
Ichiro! could go hitless for the rest of the season and end up hitting ove .310. Estimating out the number of at-bats he could get the rest of the season (which is not helped by this offensively bad offense) he’s only going to have to hit about .275 to tie George Sisler’s hits record (of 257). To break .400, he needs to hit over .500 the rest of the season. While I’m all about regressing to the mean and all, he hit .432 in July and .463 in August, and anything can happen in a hundred or so at-bats. Heck, Willie F. Bloomquist hit .455 in 33 at-bats one September.
The real problem for Ichiro! is that we’re going to face some good pitching down the stretch from Oakland, and he’s going to see it a lot. I’m cheering for him.
Niehaus is making more and more strange comments. Not just player X when player Y is out there, but weird stuff. Like when I was watching the start: “There are a lot of Mariners fans out here in Chicago, and many of them made the trip to Seattle for this game.” No joke, I TiVo’d that. I worry about him.
When Dave rips into the team, you’re in serious trouble. And he tore into them a couple times today in a way you almost never hear from him. He talked about the crappy defense repeatedly, how it’s hurt the team all year… from a guy who once kept me interested in the horrific Mariner teams of the Argyros era (“…and with two outs, the tying run is in the dugout for the Mariners…”). I was shocked, honestly. On the criticism spectrum:
team can do nothing right — team can do nothing wrong
While Dave Henderson would anchor the right-hand side, Niehaus would be pretty far towards that side. He’ll look for a reason something might not have been a bad idea, and often will prefer not to say anything about a play or a managerial decision if he thinks it’s crazy. If he’s going to come out and say a bunt was a bad idea, it may have been the worst idea all year. And yet today it was like someone put the team on a firing range today at about 10 yards and Dave brought his own gun to work out some issues.
Franklin picked someone off. Expect this bit of positive reinforcement to lead to even more throws to first. This is why Franklin’s starts are best watched on radio.