Game 149, Mariners at Rangers

Jeff · September 18, 2005 at 10:45 am · Filed Under Mariners 

It’s a marquee pitching matchup today, with Ryan Franklin (5.06 ERA) taking on R.A. Dickey (5.93). I think it’s safe to say the Fairly Doctrine (“thou shalt score four runs to win”) will not hold true today. It could be a good day for the guys with the lumber.

Of course, those numbers are pre-knuckleball R.A. Dickey. I’ve got to admit, I have a soft spot for the guy — borderline player, born without an ulnar collateral ligament, now a practitioner of the knuckleball — he just keeps on plugging. I root for him when he’s not playing the M’s.

Ichiro at DH today, with Choo out in center again. The lineup:

1 Ichiro Suzuki, DH
2 Yuniesky Betancourt, SS
3 Raul Ibanez, RF
4 Richie Sexson, 1B
5 Adrian Beltre, 3B
6 Greg Dobbs, LF
7 Jose Lopez, 2B
8 Shin-Soo Choo, CF
9 Miguel Ojeda, C


96 Responses to “Game 149, Mariners at Rangers”

  1. firova on September 18th, 2005 12:25 pm

    Just to follow up on the Boone-Beltre comparison: Dave led off the position roundtable on Boone this way:

    “2004 was a disaster for Bret Boone, especially in light of his recent performances, including his excellent 2003 season. His performances went down across the board, dropping to a mediocre .251./317/.423 line.”

    I have a feeling next spring’s third base roundtable will have to begin the same way.

  2. Ty on September 18th, 2005 12:28 pm

    The Rangers are running out of fireworks…

  3. firova on September 18th, 2005 12:29 pm

    Time for the hook. Maybe Ryan could just take a little drive back to Spiro from Arlington for a permanent visit.

  4. luigi on September 18th, 2005 12:30 pm

    If Franklin stay anymore the Rangers are going to set a record for homering with every member of the lineup.

  5. firova on September 18th, 2005 12:32 pm

    Why leave Franklin in that long? The Mariners have about 20 people in the bullpen. He should never have faced Teixiera.

  6. msb on September 18th, 2005 12:42 pm

    no one should face Teixeira

  7. Pete Livengood on September 18th, 2005 12:45 pm

    On the Boone/Beltre comparisons, and why Beltre v2005 doesn’t get the scorn Boone v2004 got:

    Boone was signed the year after a career year (2001) he had in his age 31 year, without extenuating circumstances like life-threatening disease to explain his performance in any of his preceding nine seasons. Boone had an OPS+ of 100 or more in exactly two of those nine seasons before 2001 (and one of those was a 102 OPS+ season). In fact, only one of those seven seasons produced an OPS+ as good as he had in 2004 (his 1993 season in Seattle, at 24, produced the same 98 OPS+ season Boone had in 2004). Some of the scorn Boone drew in 2004 was of the “I told you so” variety for signing a guy to a 3-year (actually, essentially a 4-year) deal after one great season, heading into his age 32 season.

    Adrian Beltre had a career year in his age 25 season, and had consecutive OPS+ seasons of at least 100 (100, 116) in the two seasons that preceded his disease-affected years, at age 20 and 21.

    Even just considering age and peak years in relation to when they got their big contracts, there are significant differences between being able to predict future progress/productivity for Beltre vs. Boone. Beltre had more clearly shown potential, at a younger age, and had extenuating (and understandable reasons) for lower productivity in the three seasons prior to his “breakout” that Boone did not. But age and peak is relevant, and a big deal. Other than the numbers Boone v2004 and Beltre v2005 produced, there are really no similarities.

    All you pessimists about Beltre may end up being right, but I think he is much more likely to progress (or is it rebound?) to a period of production that will encompass the entire length of his contract (unlike what was easily foreseeable for Boone) at perhaps a cumulative .280/.335/.500 level, with the chance of repeating 2004 in any of the next 3-4 years ever-present. His contract is reasonable given that potential, even now after a season that only slightly diminishes expectations over the life of his deal. Go back and read what USSM authors wrote about Beltre — nobody ever said he was a lock to repeat 2004 every year.

  8. JMB on September 18th, 2005 12:49 pm

    Cleveland 11, KC 0.

  9. world series on September 18th, 2005 12:49 pm

    Hey, someone other than Richie who can draw walks.

  10. Akron Mariner on September 18th, 2005 12:50 pm

    I have watched the Tribe all year and they are very good. They just did not hit early in the season. At one point they were dead last in hitting… team to watch.

  11. world series on September 18th, 2005 12:50 pm

    Beautiful play, but tie goes to the runner.

  12. MarinerDan on September 18th, 2005 12:51 pm

    #57 — While I certainly agree with you that Beltre v2005 does not equate to Boone v2004, I still believe that the return to his pre-2004 level we’ve seen from Beltre is VERY alarming. It is almost frightening how close his 2005 numbers are to his 2001-2004 numbers. And he doesn’t have the excuse of a botched surgery to explain the huge decline in his numbers.

    Until I see evidence to the contrary, I think we are looking at Beltre’s real level of performance — what he has done in 4 of the last 5 years — rather than the freakish breakout (in a contract year, coincidentally) he had in 2005.

    Time (and $60 million) will tell.

  13. Ace of Spades on September 18th, 2005 12:53 pm

    Bull, Ojeda was safe. Wasn’t really that close for me, either. Another horrible call.

    Nice peaceful and quiet exchange of ideas going on between Hargrove and the first base umpire too. That’s always a nice thing to see.

  14. MarinerDan on September 18th, 2005 12:54 pm

    I meant his 2001-2003 numbers and his breakout in 2004. Sorry.

  15. Jon Helfgott on September 18th, 2005 1:02 pm

    Memo to Hargrove: Scott Atchison deserves to be in the bullpen in 2006.

  16. Pete Livengood on September 18th, 2005 1:04 pm

    MarinerDan wrote:

    . . . I still believe that the return to his pre-2004 level we’ve seen from Beltre is VERY alarming. It is almost frightening how close his 2005 numbers are to his 2001-2004 numbers. And he doesn’t have the excuse of a botched surgery to explain the huge decline in his numbers.

    True he doesn’t have disease and botched surgery to explain this season, but he does have switching leagues, playing in an even more severe pitcher’s park than the one he came from (and one that disproportionately hinders right-handed hitters), and having much less line-up protection than he enjoyed in his career year. Also, many players have pressed too hard immediately after signing a big contract, and struggled further, pressing to correct for that poor start. I’m not offering those as excuses, just noting that any number of factors can produce an off-year like this one, and they aren’t necessarily predictive.

    As for your “4 of the last 5 years” comment, you are conveniently ignoring the two years he had before the disease/botched surgery. It looks like much less of a pattern when you include those, and consider the other factors he faced this year.

  17. world series on September 18th, 2005 1:06 pm

    As far as Boone and Beltre go, there ARE a lot of similarities beyond the statistics; They are/were both way too aggressive and trying too hard. Beltre still hasn’t snapped out of it. Batting 5th with no one protecting him isn’t helping. He shows signs of making the pitcher throw strikes, then reverts back to helping the pitcher out more times than not. He is also mentally disturbed at not being able to clear the fences in center. I’m concerned about the lack of opposite field homeruns. I thought that he would eventually find out how to make that work for him at Safeco. Like Boone though, I think Beltre can have great years here, he just needs to be protected more in the line up, he needs to relax and not press so much and if he can hit to right field with more power and more regularity (my biggest concern) his confidence will come back. His great year wasn’t a fluke, he can repeat it. He has been horrible this year, he can do better than this.

  18. JMB on September 18th, 2005 1:08 pm

    Memo to Hargrove: Scott Atchison deserves to be in the bullpen in 2006.

    Ditto Sherrill.

  19. luigi on September 18th, 2005 1:11 pm

    Barajas is the 7th Ranger to reach the 20 Hr this year.
    Playing half of your games in Arlington sure helps, but those are big numbers.

  20. JMB on September 18th, 2005 1:12 pm

    Not to keep banging this drum, but the Indians have 9 players with at least 14.

  21. luigi on September 18th, 2005 1:13 pm

    Big numbers too.
    And not in Arlington.
    The M’s 5th best hr hitter in the roster right now is Reed with 3.

  22. MarinerDan on September 18th, 2005 1:13 pm

    #66 — All good points, but I would hardly call this an “off year” for Beltre. It is closer to being his established performance level until he proves otherwise. Even his 1999-2000 years were not tremendous, even allowing for his relative youth.

  23. Jon Helfgott on September 18th, 2005 1:14 pm

    For anyone following the playoff race: Derek Jeter just came through with a clutch strike out to end the game.

  24. world series on September 18th, 2005 1:22 pm

    To follow up on the Boone/Beltre comparisons, and to what has recently been brought up here on this site – our complete lack of being able to draw a walk (apart from Richie)and poor on base percentage up and down the line up…If our hitters(Beltre – prime(bad)example)are going to be aggressive and swing at the first two pitches, they had better hit one of them! So in the end even though Boone and Beltre would benefit by hitting third (and Boone always did with Edgar behind him) it still falls on them to be able to adjust to what the pitcher gives them. They both failed miserably this year.

  25. dw on September 18th, 2005 1:23 pm

    If the White Sox complete their collapse, Guillen has only himself to blame. He’s been playing favorites all year, and then came the Damaso Marte kerfluffle.

    Interesting oddity: Podsednik’s September OPS is the highest he’s registered in a month this year — by far (.891). And yet, the Pale Hose have really stunk it up the last two weeks.

    I hate to admit I’m rooting for the First Nations People By The Lake, but I am.

  26. Daaaaan on September 18th, 2005 1:27 pm

    #74 that was a known quality of beltre before he came in

    i dont know of anyone who thought we were buying 2004 beltre. PECOTA said his OPS this year would be .830, a healthy .200 off last year. i think the thing to be concerned about is he is currently another 100 points off that, which is… well, it is what it is.

  27. luigi on September 18th, 2005 1:49 pm

    Looking at stats:
    the current M’s roster have a combined 103 HRs this year, 89 by 4 players(Richie,Raul,Beltre and Ichiro) and 14 (fourteen) all other players.
    Beltre may not be the more disciplined hitter in the league, but knowing who hits after him doesn’t help for sure.

  28. msb on September 18th, 2005 2:20 pm

    Beltre in the TNT on friday:

    “I’m a mess right now, my body and mind suck,” Beltre said. “I’m a big
    part of the failure of this team.”

    The Seattle Mariners have had bigger problems than free-agent acquisition Beltre this year, but he shakes his head when that’s mentioned.

    “My history has been I may start slow but I always finish strong, and
    somewhere during the season I’ll get hot – for maybe a month, at least
    for a few weeks. But this season there’s been nothing close to that.
    “There hasn’t been a full week all year where I felt completely confident at the plate. This season seems like it’s lasted 15 months.”

    A man with a career .274 batting average, Beltre batted .334 last
    season with 48 home runs and 121 RBI for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
    Going into the game Thursday, he was batting .257 with 18 home runs
    and 79 RBI.

    “It’s been hard to feel excited getting to the ballpark, walking to
    the plate this year,” Beltre said. “I haven’t done what I can do yet.
    I haven’t come close. The fans have been unbelievably supportive – but
    they haven’t seen what they’ve got yet.”

    When the season ends, he said, Beltre will take a few weeks away from
    the game and then, splitting time between homes in Los Angeles and the
    Dominican Republic, begin working toward 2006.

    “I’ve been thinking way too much, trying to make up for the whole
    season in every at-bat,” Beltre said. “It’s time to let my ability
    take over. I know the league better, the way they pitch me, and that
    will help next year. I know this – we will have a better season in 2006. I don’t think I can have a worse one.”

  29. firova on September 18th, 2005 3:31 pm

    57. I never said anything about projecting Boone and Beltre; I thought it was obvious that Boone had far less potential for a rebound after his poor season. Certainly Beltre 2006 should be able to do better than Boone 2005 did, but I’m simply underlining what kind of year Beltre has had in comparison with the Mariners’ need following Boone’s 2004 year in the 3-spot. He hasn’t gotten it done and I certainly hope he can next year.

  30. Pete Livengood on September 18th, 2005 4:34 pm

    79, firova — I never said you did say anything about projecting Boone and Beltre; in fact, I was reacting to what several posters were saying and neither quoted nor responded to any single poster.

    The reason I mentioned projections was that it seemed obvious to me that was the reason Boone got more criticism here for his 2004 season than Beltre has gotten for his 2005. That seemed to me to be the thrust of the original post on this subject (not by you): why so much scorn for Boone and his contract in 2004, and not so much for Beltre now, when their numbers are so similar? My response was to point out the obvious difference in their age and projectibility over the life of the contract. That’s all.

  31. MarinerDan on September 18th, 2005 4:54 pm

    To be accurate, I never said anything about Boone or comparing him to Beltre in the original post.

    I think Beltre is deserving of scorn all by himself, without any comparison to Boone’s disaster of a season in 2004.

  32. ray on September 18th, 2005 4:59 pm

    Oh darn! The posts didn’t reach 100 today. Well, I guess there was no lead to blow. I still say put Tree Beard behind Beltre and they will pitch stikes.

  33. pensive on September 18th, 2005 6:02 pm

    No doubt cream will riase
    to mid-level or not. Bsaeball is indeed an odd sport; which means stats reveal a the trend but one never knows for certain. the heartbreaking beauty of it all.

  34. JMB on September 18th, 2005 6:08 pm

    When the season ends, he said, Beltre will take a few weeks away from
    the game and then, splitting time between homes in Los Angeles and the
    Dominican Republic, begin working toward 2006.

    I’d feel better if he moved to Seattle this winter and spent the off-season training with Edgar Martinez.

  35. chris w on September 18th, 2005 9:41 pm

    Relative to his contract, Beltre has been awful. Relative to the rest of the 3rd basemen in the league, he’s been pretty bad. Based on what he did this season, there’s a really good chance his contract is going to be an albatross, and there’s really no way to sugar-coat that right now. The difference between Beltre 2004 and Beltre 2005 is more than 6 wins.

  36. Adam S on September 18th, 2005 9:52 pm

    For what it’s worth, Beltre has a home in Seattle (well, the Eastside) and is building another one. I was surprised to read that he still has a home in LA.

  37. NMS on September 18th, 2005 10:05 pm

    Dickey was a helluva college pitcher too

  38. G-Man on September 18th, 2005 10:45 pm

    86, with $64 million, you can have a lot of homes. It doesn’t surprise me that he still has the LA home; it doesn’t mean that he really wants to be playing there instead.

  39. Shoeless Jose on September 18th, 2005 11:15 pm

    I’m willing to give Beltre until next August before I make up my mind. He’s still young, and I think he can be better than he showed this year. I’m not willing to make a prediction that may turn out to look silly or shortsighted in retrospect (eg, see post #101 in this thread).

    BTW, Randy Winn, 3 HRs in 3 games.

  40. MarinerDan on September 19th, 2005 7:24 am

    Shoeless Joe said: “I think he can be better than he showed this year.”

    My God, if he isn’t, then he will go down as one of the biggest free agent busts in history.

  41. Evan on September 19th, 2005 9:02 am

    The thing about Beltre is that we’re stuck with him. Until we have someone better available, there’s really no point is discussing how big of an albatross he is (wingspan: 15 feet).

  42. Ralph Malph on September 19th, 2005 9:19 am

    I’m glad to hear Beltre saying the things he said.

    Scorn should be reserved for guys who aren’t trying, or who bitch and complain and blame others. If anything, Beltre is trying too hard.

    Disappointment, yes. Save your scorn for guys like Ryan Franklin.

  43. Gomez on September 19th, 2005 11:16 am

    Agreed. Beltre, one season into a five year contract, working unprotected in the 5 hole while playing half his game in a deep pitcher’s park that kills flyballs and facing AL pitching for the first time this season, hasn’t done as well as he and his fans are accustomed to. I’m very disappointed in his performance this year, but so is he. He’s gone on at length about how his crap performance keeps him awake at night. If he’s still giving us 260/300/400 by this time next season, then it may be time to call him a bust relative to his salary. Even then, he’s probably one of the best options for 3B there is and I don’t mind seeing him at the corner for the duration of his contract.

    But anyway, like Ralph said, save the scorn for people like Frankie Roid Rage, who sucks, never improves, complains later like it isn’t his fault, and gets to keep his spot only because no one else is available.

  44. vj on September 19th, 2005 11:29 am

    I just checked the top play archive on the M’s website. Ibanez’ big cut is funny. Kind of sad when a swing and miss is one of two top plays.

  45. JeffF on September 19th, 2005 1:00 pm

    Franklin was quoted this morning saying something like “I hate this park.” Hmmmm. Yes, that dang park.

    Does he say that about every park in the country? Lord knows his record isn’t a reflection of an enormous suckage. Must be the parks.

  46. Jim Thomsen on September 19th, 2005 1:15 pm

    Oh, no … Beltre’s admitting he has Jeff Cirillo Disease. The latter’s smale-scale successes in Milwaukee this year notwithstanding, the disease is likely fatal and there is no known cure.