This week’s PI column

DMZ · February 24, 2005 at 9:31 am · Filed Under Mariners 

On the 1995 team and lessons from that year.

Also in the PI today — a long human-interest-type story on Yuniesky Betancourt, the Cuban player the M’s signed.


16 Responses to “This week’s PI column”

  1. Evan on February 24th, 2005 9:41 am

    Playing against your home park.

    Given how poorly teams do when they’re built to augment their home park effects, that’s probably a good idea. I’d love to see some detailed research on that, to see if teams built to complement their home park, rather than augment it, do better consistently.

  2. DMZ on February 24th, 2005 10:08 am

    I know about the Dan/Dave typo, btw.

  3. Dave Paisley on February 24th, 2005 10:19 am

    Did anyone proof read that?

    There are at least four words missing/misphrasings, even after the other corrections.

  4. roger tang on February 24th, 2005 10:22 am

    re #1

    Now THAT’S a very interesting question to ask. Might be a thing about creating a balanced, versatile team, or a matter of addressing a weakness to create balance.

  5. RL on February 24th, 2005 10:47 am

    How does that article not mention some guy named Griffey? Granted, he was hurt for a while, but seemed to make some contributions when he came back.

  6. Ja- on February 24th, 2005 10:57 am

    A couple of comments on your PI article and other factors that you may not have included.

    First, this was a team that had a month long road trip the year before because the ceiling tiles were falling. I have to believe that helped the team “gel” together than any normal situation.

    Second, the team was still 8-11 games out with only a couple weeks to go in the season. That’s when the miraculus seemed to be happenning every night. What enchanted everyone, wasn’t that they were so good, it’s that every night the almost impossible happenned. Doug Strange’s pinch hits, Soho’s goofy looking swing getting hits with regularity, Blower’s 6 RBI night…

    And third, the ’95 mariniers, for as endearing as they were to the northwest, still got blown away in the Division Championship and with a projected total of 83 wins, that isn’t exactly the team I’d make my model for how to build the franchise compared with the last few years.

    From a baseball prospective, the 2001 was much more interesting. Eight teams make the playoffs every year now. (Nobody wins 166 games with regularlity.) And that 2001 team was very much built to compliment their ballpark. I’d make that the pattern rather than the former.

  7. Adam S on February 24th, 2005 11:00 am

    Derek, what do you think it will take for people, both fans and management, to see past the raw statistics and start to understand the Mariners offense and pitching in the context of the park. The perception around town is that the Mariners offense stunk last year and the pitching was OK (middle of the league). But when you look at just road games, it’s clear the opposite is true. And sadly management did nothing directly to improve the pitching.

    I always felt the Cubs teams and management of the 70s and 80s suffered from the same fate (in reverse). A hitters’ ballpark made a medicore offense look good and they always worried about the pitching They never really figured this out but new smaller ballparks and changing wind patterns turned Wrigley into a neutral/pitchers park and made the issue moot.

  8. Shoeless Jose on February 24th, 2005 12:33 pm

    But IIRC the 2001 team’s road winning % was better than their home winning % — which would lead you to the conclusion they were playing “against” Safeco.

  9. eponymous coward on February 24th, 2005 1:04 pm

    Second, the team was still 8-11 games out with only a couple weeks to go in the season.

    Uh, no. The M’s were 4 games out of first in 1995 on September 15th…but they led the Yankees in the Wild Card race (which they were also leading on September 1st).

  10. eponymous coward on February 24th, 2005 1:05 pm

    I know about the Dan/Dave typo, btw.

    Apparently you got your Sheriffs mixed up. 😉

  11. Bill on February 24th, 2005 1:41 pm

    I think you also forgot to mention Griffey, which is odd. Was he injured that season, or was that the following year? I know he scored the winning run against the Yankees but 10 years ago is suddenly clouding my memory.

  12. eponymous coward on February 24th, 2005 1:55 pm

    Was he injured that season

    Yep, running into a wall, missed a big chunk of season.

  13. Christopher Michael on February 24th, 2005 2:18 pm

    Well he didn’t just run into the wall. It was on hell of a catch that smashed his wrist.

  14. John in L.A. on February 24th, 2005 2:41 pm


    “that isn’t exactly the team I’d make my model for how to build the franchise compared with the last few years.”

    I don’t think he was holding it up as a model as much as he was saying that the 2005 team has a CHANCE to be like them.

    They do not have a chance to be like the 2001 team.

    The 83 wins isn’t the ultimate goal… it’s an attainable goal.

    As far as the 2001 team being built to compliment the ballpark… I’m not sure I agree with that either.

  15. Jackson West on February 25th, 2005 1:19 am

    So has Blaine Newham tried to deck you yet? Congrats on the gig with the PI!

  16. Paul Covert on February 25th, 2005 11:25 am

    Re. #1– The only anti-home-park advantage I can think of is that having an extreme home park allows a team to expand the Billy Beane “sell high” strategy a bit. For example, Colorado ought to be able to get ahead by trading their hitters to teams who don’t sufficiently deflate their stats.

    Seattle could conceivably do a bit of that with pitching, but I’d expect it to be a marginal advantage rather than a huge one.