Game 37 Götterdämmerung
If it’s not one thing, it’s another at this point. I don’t know if we’re full into the Götterdämmerung phase yet, as the offense will surely bounce back, and Milton Bradley will soon resume doing what he does, but the state of affairs is quite disheartening at the moment, and I wasn’t going to let marc’s use of “ragnarok” slide.
The Mariners faced off against a Matt Garza who wasn’t particularly on his game. At some point in the third inning, a graphic popped up that indicated that he had more balls than strikes. He left with only two strikeouts. Unfortunately, the home plate umpire didn’t really care that Garza was off his game and was repeatedly giving him the outside strike to left-handed batters. The two Ks, to Saunders in the third and to Griffey in the fourth, were questionable if you look at the pitch tracker. Take it away, robots.
Despite giving up his first walk of the season to Longoria, Lee pitched as well as we’ve seen from him, ending the night with ten Ks. Hank Blalock, who came in hitting 6-for-13 off him, went 0-for-3 and struck out twice. He managed to strand Aybar after that bizarre double just outside the infield when Figgins and Ichiro both lost the ball and Guti didn’t make it in time. He’s done everything to endear himself to the Mariners, including appearing back on the mound in the second before they even went to commercial break. The Mariners? Well, I can’t imagine that the feeling is mutual at this point.
Our one run came on three consecutive singles by the Tacoma Rainiers, Josh Wilson, Josh Bard, and Michael Saunders, but then Ichiro flew out, after coming into the game with seven consecutive multi-hit games, and Figgins grounded into his second double play of the series to end it. Bard made a good first impression on the team with the single, and the walk, and the catching of the baseball. We’ll see what happens in a couple of weeks when Moore is eligible to come off.
Other bullet points from the day:
* Griffey nearly blooped one to the left side, against the Griffey Shift. That ball was caught by Crawford, who also stole what might have been a RBI double from Jose Lopez in the sixth. Carl Crawford ruined my Sunday afternoon.
* Saunders nearly caught Crawford’s triple. Remain calm.
* It’s distasteful to see a man getting kicked when he’s down. Kotchman got that today, in consecutive at-bats. First he gets the chin music, and then as he’s spinning away, Navarro throws to his blindside to keep Lopez on the bag at first. The next time up, he gets drilled in the shoulder. What did Kotchman ever do to you, Rays?
* One of the things that’s likely to stick out in our minds after today’s game, like the Moore pinch-running mistake last night, is Gutierrez running into the third out of the inning at third base. Josh Wilson was at-bat then, not exactly the guy you want at the plate in a RBI situation, but still, awful. One interesting statistical tidbit on Guti is that in the month of May, he’s running a 13/11 K/BB. So, on one hand, he’s striking out in almost a third of his at-bats, but on the other, he’s already logged three more walks in May than he did the whole month of April.
* Jack Wilson went 1-for-2 as the DH in last night’s game for West Tenn, but is sitting out today.