Last 7 Days

Dave · June 8, 2006 at 9:18 am · Filed Under Mariners 

In the last week, the Mariners have played six games – four against KC, and two against Minnesota. The Mariners are 5-1 in those six games. Now, both of the opponents stink, to be kind, so beating the Royals and Twins isn’t exactly cause for celebration. But man, it’s been fun to watch, at least. Some performances over the last week:

Ichiro! – .571/.586/.821
Ibanez – .444/.522/.889
Sexson – .320/.308/.720

Hello, power. It’s amazing what driving the ball consistently can do for an offense. Those three have combined for six of the team’s 11 home runs in the past week. Hard to have an offensive slump when you have a third of your line-up just whacking the baseball.

Now, for the weird lines:

Beltre – .231/.286/.538
Lopez – .190/.357/.476

Neither one is hitting for average, but they’ve both shown enough power to be useful despite that.

Oh, and Betancourt is hitting .350/.409/.550 for good measure. They’ve averaged 6.3 runs per game while playing all the games in Safeco Field. Not bad.

On the pitching side:

Jamie Moyer: 14 IP, 1.93 ERA, 3 BB, 3 K (don’t ask how, just enjoy)
Meche/Pineiro/Hernandez: 7 IP, 1.29 ERA

Moyer was awesome and then just okay, while the rest of the rotation (minus Washburn) has been equally excellent. Literally. All three even walked two guys in their start. The bullpen hasn’t been great (besides Putz, who really should be an all-star this year), but the rotation pitched really well. As a team, they allowed 3.7 runs per game. Even in Safeco, against those offenses, that’s not shabby.

Yes, the competition has been terrible. But, you know what, they’re wins. They count in the standings too. So hooray.


50 Responses to “Last 7 Days”

  1. Evan on June 8th, 2006 9:44 am

    Lopez finally found his OBP. Just as we moved him down the order.

    I recall, Dave, that you described Carl Everett to Bill Bavasi as “hits .250, with some pop, left-handed, gets hurt a lot”.

    He hasn’t been hurt, yet, but that .250 with some pop description looks pretty prophetic.

  2. Phoenician Todd on June 8th, 2006 9:53 am

    Whenever I take a look at YuBet’s numbers, I go back to the thread that discusses why we don’t want Miguel Tejada. One of the assumptions was that YuBet’s line was the equivalent of .280/.320/.400 in a neutral park. Well, so far this year, he is at .288/.305/.409 overall to go with his recent hot streak.

    I love having this Betancourt in the lineup every day.

  3. Nick on June 8th, 2006 9:53 am

    The thing I’ve noticed in the past week or so is that they’re hitting the mistake pitches harder and more often. Of course it could be that they’re just seeing more mistakes, but capitalizing on mistakes is something that they haven’t done much of until lately. The hanging curve that Yubet got last night and the pitch that Sexson pulled down the line are good examples.

    I wasn’t impressed with Hargrove’s handling of the bullpen the past two nights (or ever, really). Where are the Rainiers right now? The M’s might have to call up someone to pick up the slack today.

  4. Mariner Fan in CO Exile on June 8th, 2006 9:57 am

    Another thing to add is that a team shows clear improvement and better consistency when it beats the teams it should beat easily, and struggles against the teams that are close or just better. I think you have a much better sense of where the ceiling is for a particular team when they aren’t schizophrenic in their performances (underperforming against slouch teams and overperforming against really good clubs on a regular basis). The Mariners have gelled in the last month to the extent they are likely to (despite some rough patches), and we are starting to get a better sense of what we have on our hands here. I don’t know if it is anything to do cartwheels over, but it is something. There is also room for continued individual improvements that may give us some decent series along the way.

    I have given up hope that the pitchers will overachieve at the same time certain hitters kick it into gear for sustained periods. But that’s mostly so I don’t get my hopes up again.

  5. Jim Thomsen on June 8th, 2006 9:57 am

    The problem with these wins is that it allows the Mariners the luxury of denying reality for a while longer.

    Nobody’s talking anymore about firing Hargrove, yet he’s still up to his destructive one-run-strategy shenanigans. The team is winning in large measure despite him.

    I loved Everett’s walk-off dinger (as much as I detest the phrase), but do we really want to see him get closer to seeing his 2007 option automatically vest?

    The illusions about Meche seem to be fully intact still.

    What does winning mean if it doesn’t work toward something meaningful?

  6. manzell on June 8th, 2006 10:03 am

    a month ago, we were wondering if Lopez should be the M’s rep. at the all-star game, but it looks like Ichiro is a shoo in now. You mentioned Putz, which i think is a long shot (esp. the way Yanks and Sawks have locked up all the starters), but is Lopez now a long shot as well?

    By the way, if NY and BOS make up the entire AL starting roster, is that the beginning of the end of fan voting?

  7. dirka dirka on June 8th, 2006 10:05 am

    In baseball (as in all professional sports), winning IS meaningful. Even if you’re towards the bottom of the division at the end of the season, you can’t just throw the last few games in order to receive better positioning for the draft. The disenfrancisement of the fan base can happen any moment – and the only way to change that is by winning.

    Yes, Hargrove needs to go. But I don’t think that anyone is a real fan if they root for the hometown nine to lose a few in order to get rid of a manager. Its just not in the job description of a fan.

  8. Safeco Hobo on June 8th, 2006 10:07 am

    I think the line-up today will help indicate how the M’s weigh in on Everett’s 2007 option. They’ll be facing probably the best left handed starter in the league today, and Everett has shown over the past month he CAN’T hit lefties…..Morse has made the most of his chances batting against the lefties so far.

    But Everett was the hero last night, and Grover has to stick with his veterans…..Hmmm, any guesses on the line-up?

    I hope to god, Johjima gets a rest, I know Willie will be in CF, and i have a hunch Grover will find space for both Morse and Everett.

  9. JAS on June 8th, 2006 10:09 am

    Fans have an obligation to detest poor coaching/managing. Some fans also reallize that losing two today means three wins tomorrow, so long as losing today means Hargrove is gone….

  10. Bob Loblaw on June 8th, 2006 10:14 am

    7 – I think unless he goes on a crazy tear over the next few weeks Lopez will probably not make it – even though he deserves to. Robinson Cano is leading the vote at second followed by Mark Loretta and Tadahito Iguchi. I would think that Ozzie Guillen would pick his own guy as the backup second baseman.

    Good news: I think over the next few years Lopez will make a few All-Star games. I think he’s just too good to be unknown for much longer.

  11. Nick on June 8th, 2006 10:15 am

    I love what Jose Lopez is doing, but I think the only way he gets into the All-Star Game is with a ticket. A rookie 2B hitting .280 in Seattle isn’t going to be noticed unless he’s hit 20+ dingers and dates Lindsey Lohan.

  12. Nick on June 8th, 2006 10:18 am

    If Johjima is more than a late inning replacement, or if Soriano even picks up a baseball today, Hargrove should be fired.

  13. Bob Loblaw on June 8th, 2006 10:18 am

    The 20+ dingers is unrealistic, but I doubt dating Lindsey Lohan is going to be that hard.

  14. Evan on June 8th, 2006 10:20 am

    I’ve seen some good analysis suggesting that the only factor that really influences attendance is the previous season’s record. A winning team will draw fans next season. A losing team will fail to draw fans next season.

  15. msb on June 8th, 2006 10:26 am

    #3– the Rainiers are at Cashman tonight…

    wasn’t the guess at the feed that Carl’s magic number for the option to vest was 450 ABs? because he’s already over 200…

  16. Evan on June 8th, 2006 10:28 am

    If Johjima is more than a late inning replacement

    A day game after an extra-inning night game. I can’t think of a better example of managing by the book. Rivera will start today.

  17. msb on June 8th, 2006 10:39 am

    final draft note– the ‘familiar names’ are in: Jeremy Barfield (son of Josh), Chad Tracy (son of Jim), Kyle Drabek (son of Doug), Preston Mattingly (son of Don), Marcus Lemon (son of Chet), Josh Lansford (son of Carney), Josh Roenicke (son of Gary), Josh & Jeremy Papelbon, Kurt Bradley (son of Phil), Trent Henderson (son of Dave), David Cash (son of Dave), and Candy Maldonado (who else, son of Candy)

  18. Evan on June 8th, 2006 10:44 am

    I’ll bet Jeremy Barfield is actually the brother of Josh, and son of Jesse.

  19. Bender on June 8th, 2006 10:51 am

    Bavasi said that the vesting option wasn’t that easy to hit, and that he wouldn’t hit it unless he was hitting well. He also said that Carl was basically Doyle insurance and that if things go well Doyle will be taking his at bats as soon as he’s ‘healthy’.

  20. Evan on June 8th, 2006 10:55 am

    Bill’s words were “if his option vests that means he’s kickin’ ass.”

    I don’t think .248/.325/.398 counts as “kickin’ ass”. That’s only marginally better than Willie’s career line.

  21. msb on June 8th, 2006 10:55 am

    #18– yup.

    #19– but sadly, what are the odds Hargrove willingly sets a veteran for a kid? IIRC, 450 was Boone’s AB vesting number, which may be why we assumed it would be Carl’s as well when Bavasi said it wouldn’t be easy to hit … which it wouldn’t be if Mike wasn’t running him out there, game after game after game.

  22. Gregor on June 8th, 2006 11:06 am

    In more bizarre news, the M’s are now the only team in their division with a winning home record.

  23. Evan on June 8th, 2006 11:07 am

    Browsing BP’s stat reports, I notice that last night’s offensive surge has pushed the M’s team EqA to .260. The Mariners are now sporting a league-average offense.

    League-average. That’s not so bad considering that we have 3 guys ranking below 660th (out of 695) in VORP.

    661: Reed
    667: Sexson
    680: Beltre

  24. jephdood on June 8th, 2006 11:15 am

    Is Reed just not really the prospect he’s been built up to be? I’m starting to fast forward the Tivo through his at-bats.

    Side note.. today will be Dave Niehaus’ 4500th broadcast. At least, I think I heard that right on my alarm clock this morning..


  25. JoeM on June 8th, 2006 11:28 am

    We knew teh M’s weren’t going to lose all their games and it’s fun to watch them wina few, especially hitting like they have been. I say enjoy the wins while we have them.

  26. JoeM on June 8th, 2006 11:33 am

    Okay first I have to apologize for the horrific spelling in my last post. Second, there is an upside to Jeremy Reed right? This season is just a fluke?

  27. Evan on June 8th, 2006 11:37 am

    Reed’s a young guy, and Grover’s not giving him regular playing time. I’m confident he’d do better if he just got to play every day.

    Plus, he had that wrist injury. I’d love to know what that actually was and if it’s affecting him.

  28. msb on June 8th, 2006 11:38 am

    here is the pre-season write-up on Reed

  29. msb on June 8th, 2006 11:39 am

    #27– well, it is still taped halfway up his arm….

  30. argh on June 8th, 2006 11:46 am

    We’ve played some bad teams this week, but the first step toward a good team has to be beating the teams you’re supposed to beat. Build from there.

    As for Reed: if this season’s a fluke it’s not all that much of one. Last season he was 254/322/352 and so far this year it’s 216/257/351. Worse but not by light-years. Not that I wouldn’t like to see his average get back up to ~. 260, of course, but he seems to be pretty much what we’ve seen for the last 15 months.

  31. JAS on June 8th, 2006 12:05 pm

    I soured on Reed when I watched him hit last year. I relied on scouting reports to form a positive opinion, but the truth is in the swing. As I have posted in other threads, I spend a lot of time on player development, which helps me key in on problem areas for hitters.

    The problem area with Reed is not his swing mechanics, per se. He just doesn’t generate sufficient bat speed. Contrast Reed with Doyle, for example. Doyle hits well because he can use his tremendous bat speed to react to pitches later, giving him more time to track the pitch. Reed has to commit earlier, and is more susceptible to being off just a little bit.

  32. Safeco Hobo on June 8th, 2006 12:14 pm

    31 – I’ve keyed in on some of those things too. I mean it almost seemed like an act of desparation when Reed brought his hands down closer to the plate so they didn’t have to move as far. When Reed was great that first year he was really hitting line drives HARD, now he just seems to be getting under the ball WAY too much.

  33. Ralph Malph on June 8th, 2006 12:25 pm

    I see Morse is DH-ing again today — which I think makes the most sense given this roster. There was a funny sentence in the ESPN game report on the game a couple days ago saying that Morse showed his versatility by getting a couple hits as DH. I’m not sure how much versatility it takes to be a DH.

  34. Lauren, token chick on June 8th, 2006 12:28 pm

    ESPN reports that Jeff Nelson will have what is probably career-ending elbow surgery. Well, really, the AP reports it.

  35. Deanna on June 8th, 2006 12:49 pm

    What sort of sucks is that it’s Johjima’s birthday today, so he can’t follow the mandate of hitting a home run on your birthday. Of course, yesterday was Petagine’s birthday, and they didn’t even give him a shot.

  36. Jim Thomsen on June 8th, 2006 12:49 pm

    Roster move: Fruto back up, Green down.

  37. Phoenician Todd on June 8th, 2006 12:52 pm

    So who will we see today, Junkball Pineiro or that other, craptastic one?

  38. Phoenician Todd on June 8th, 2006 12:52 pm

    Hopefully Fruto is here to stay this time.

  39. billT on June 8th, 2006 1:26 pm

    Hopefully Fruto is here to stay this time.

    Based on two good outings earlier in the season? I’m sure Green put together two decent outings in a row at one point. Hell, Mateo probably has as well…

  40. Phoenician Todd on June 8th, 2006 1:31 pm

    Exactly, a completely irrational thought. I have no basis for the opinion, I just liked the way he threw the ball.

  41. Nick on June 8th, 2006 1:47 pm

    I think the Fruto move is just recognition that they can’t play to day with only Once-in-a-while-Eddie available in the ‘pen. As far as I can tell, Fruto hasn’t pitched in a while, so it could be interesting.

  42. BelaXadux on June 8th, 2006 8:43 pm

    Re: the team’s week, seeing a lot of mistake pitches does wonder for the SLG %, and that’s what the team had until Santana took the mound today. Hitting some good pitchers throwing well . . . well, that would be nice, but I haven’t seen the home side do that collectively much this year. Still, fun while it lasted.

    YuBet: Two wishes for Yuniesky: a) work the count, and take the walk if that’s the result, b) pull the inside pitch if you’re looking for it. I’m pretty happy with how Betancourt is hitting this year. And remember, he’s a year and a half from not playing, and two years and a half from playing in Cuba. In reality, he’s still developing as a hitter so we can expect perhaps more refinement in his approach at the plate than would be case otherwise. And despite his ML contract to get him signed, he’s still pretty cheap. Gotta love it/him.

    Reed: What you see is what we’ve got. It isn’t just his batspeed. His walk rate is totally unacceptable, and a significant share of his hits, especially lately, have been bunting-for-a-hit singles. In a couple of weeks, I’ll have more to say, but I expect to be talking then about exactly the situation we see now.

  43. Ralph Malph on June 9th, 2006 9:46 am

    I’d be more willing to give up on Reed if he’d been hitting crappy despite playing regularly. What he’s doing is less than a platoon — he only starts against RHP, he gets hit for against LOOGY’s, but he doesn’t come in for Will-Blow against RH relievers.

  44. Evan on June 9th, 2006 10:18 am

    Your description matches almost exactly with how Toronto is using Frank Catalanotto in their LF JohnnyCat platoon. I don’t think anyone would argue that’s the way to develop a hitter.

    That’s the way to deploy an experienced hitter you know has holes in his game. Not young Jeremy.

  45. gwangung on June 9th, 2006 11:16 am

    Your description matches almost exactly with how Toronto is using Frank Catalanotto in their LF JohnnyCat platoon. I don’t think anyone would argue that’s the way to develop a hitter.

    That’s the way to deploy an experienced hitter you know has holes in his game. Not young Jeremy.

    Shouldn’t worry about that too long. In a bit, he’ll be an old player that you “know” has holes in his games.

  46. joser on June 9th, 2006 12:12 pm

    Catalanotto is also hitting .316 / .424 / .500 in 130+ ABs. That’s the kind of off-the-bench bat you want to have.

  47. Evan on June 9th, 2006 2:03 pm

    Exactly. When a guy hits like that (against righties only – Cat’s useless against lefties) you put him in a regular platoon. Platooning Reed makes no sense at all.

    That JohnnyCat platoon in Toronto is working brilliantly. Their combined batting lines make them the best LF in the AL.

    *yes, I came up with that JohnnyCat name myself, and I like it so much I use it incessantly*

  48. Abodacious on June 9th, 2006 2:10 pm

    41: It is now “Yesterday Eddie”

  49. Evan on June 9th, 2006 2:18 pm

    To add to that comparion, Reed’s getting starts only against righties, but not all righties. And, while he gets pinch-hit for against lefties, he doesn’t get to pinch hit for Willie against righties.

    This is why I compared his usage to Catalanotto.

    Catalanotto has 165 plate appearances this season, 2 of them against lefty pitchers. He’s hitting the aforementioned .316/.424/.500.

    Reed Johnson has 147 plate appearances this season, split equally between lefties and righties. Johnson’s the superior defender, so he gets some extra playing time. Plus, his platoon split isn’t that severe. This year his split is actually reversed: he’s hitting .339/.438/.355 against lefties, but .385/.459/.600 against righties.

    So, Cat’s dwindling usage actually makes sense, unlike Reed’s, but their usage patterns are similar.

  50. BelaXadux on June 9th, 2006 10:49 pm

    I don’t see Reed’s usage that way at all, Evan. Here’s the deal: JR is hitting only against righties where he should put up good numbers—and still you see what his numbers are. While Reed’s ABs against lefties aren’t numerous, his results against them to this point are unplayable. If Reed were tattooing righties, there’s a case for extending his PT, but as it is, there’s no case. If Reed is ‘developing as a player,’ please, please, please let’s see some results against RHPers.

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