Cactus League Game 8: M’s at Giants

marc w · March 6, 2011 at 10:03 am · Filed Under Mariners 

12:05 start, on 710 radio and MLB gameday audio.

Dustin Ackley 2B
Adam Kennedy 3B
Milton Bradley LF
Jack Cust DH
Justin Smoak 1B
Ryan Langerhans CF
Carlos Peguero RF
Josh Bard C
Luis Rodriguez SS
Nate Robertson P

* Ichiro gets the day off, so Carlos Peguero gets some at-bats against Tim Lincecum and Madison Bumgarner. I don’t know that you could get more dissimilar players, physically, at one position (pitchers don’t count: Randy Johnson and Rich Garces).
* Behind Robertson, the M’s have Blake Beavan, Brandon League, Garrett Olson, Chaz Roe, Cesar Jimenez, Fabio Castro, Chris Smith and Yusmeiro Petit.
* The low-leverage righty competition has been ugly so far. Today’s entrant is Chris Smith, who’s a huge longshot to make the team, but, but between Dan Cortes’ disastrous inning yesterday, Manny Delcarmen’s poor command/velocity, Denny Bautista’s struggles…no, he’s still a longshot. I have no idea how these guys have looked in workouts, and they can’t make the decision based on the results of tiny samples, but a lot of these NRI/prospect guys are not exactly making a case for themselves. We knew this was going to be a battle this spring, but I think we’d all like tough decisions that aren’t least-worst options.
* Greg Johns notes that Olivo had his MRI, but the doctors won’t actually review it until tomorrow.
* Minor league pitchers/catchers report to Peoria today, with physicals tomorrow and workouts beginning Tuesday.


12 Responses to “Cactus League Game 8: M’s at Giants”

  1. Paul B on March 6th, 2011 11:44 am

    710 seems to have basketball today.

  2. Westside guy on March 6th, 2011 12:24 pm

    This would be a more exciting match-up later in spring – we’ll only “see” Lincecum for a couple innings.

    Hey, hopefully the automatic ban for mentioning his name has been lifted for this game? 🙂

  3. Paul B on March 6th, 2011 12:33 pm

    They stopped broadcasting the basketball games, the Mariners are on 710.

  4. Westside guy on March 6th, 2011 12:44 pm

    Another walk for Ackley. At this rate, he’ll have almost as many as the rest of the team combined.

  5. Westside guy on March 6th, 2011 12:57 pm

    Good grief – we’re in the fourth, and Lincecum has only had to throw 27 pitches. Ackley accounts for about 20% of those. I’m glad it’s only spring training, but – did everyone attend Jose Lopez’s batting school over the winter?

  6. groundzero55 on March 6th, 2011 1:03 pm

    Geez, Lincy’s on cruise control.

  7. Westside guy on March 6th, 2011 3:01 pm

    Wow, reading through the box score after the game – there must be a mistake. HALMAN took a WALK???

  8. marc w on March 6th, 2011 5:11 pm

    Halman’s not above taking a walk every now and again. The sample is tiny, but Ackley had an 8.4% BB rate in Tacoma (in a half-season) while Halman had an 8.0%. I’m not saying they have the same patience at all – just saying that Halman’s not in the Lopez/Betancourt/Johjima class by any stretch.

    His problem is contact; he will take pitches out of the strike zone, then swing through a pitch in the heart of the plate. His walk rate’s been creeping up the last few years, so hopefully he can get it around 10% in the minors this year. This is his last option year, so it’s time for a big step forward.

    Smoak was facing a tough opponent, but this season really hinges on him beating his projections soundly… he can’t do that without making more contact.

  9. Breadbaker on March 6th, 2011 7:18 pm

    I’m glad it’s only spring training, but – did everyone attend Jose Lopez’s batting school over the winter?

    Good line. I wish it didn’t have a ring of truth to it.

  10. samregens on March 7th, 2011 12:01 am

    I’m worried that Smoak and maybe some other important players are not getting enough time in.

    Enough already with the giving too much game time to the army of cheap pickups and retreads.

    Last year the FO (Jack Z) and coaches got too cute and forgot that the team was just lucky to win as many games as they did in 2008, and fiddled around where it wasn’t necessary. The Figgins switch, those stupid newfangled exercises with a lack of stress on fundamentals, etc.

    I hope this year’s version of “being stupid trying to show smarts” is not spending too much effort to show they are capable of finding a usable piece among the huge amount of chaff Jack Z went and picked up.

    As a Mariner fan I could care less how “smart” Jack Z tries to show himself to be. Just good process and results, please.
    Don’t overdo things and don’t try to fix what ain’t broken.

  11. eponymous coward on March 7th, 2011 12:37 pm

    The reason why spring training is as long as it is is to stretch pitching arms out to pitching 5+ innings. Position players would likely be ready to go with two weeks of games.

    So worrying that the M’s are doing things like trying to evaluate the bottom of the roster instead of playing Smoak every day… well, that doesn’t make sense. Justin Smoak’s 2011 season isn’t going to ride on him seeing playing time against some team’s AA arms throwing 84 MPH sinkers in Arizona. Ichiro is still going to be Ichiro come opening day, even if he isn’t playing every inning of spring training.

  12. samregens on March 8th, 2011 1:19 am

    OK thanks, I guess I overreacted.
    It’s probably because I’m really hoping that Smoak can be or grow to be that MOTO bat we need so desperately, and I’m a little worried that he doesn’t look good so far.

    I do understand that Jack Wilson is unreliable and Saunders has shown nothing so far (deserves no entitlement at all) so the FO and coaches need to see if there are any good IF or OF guys who can stick.

    You’re right that we can count on Ichiro. And I guess the other veteran players will also come around.

    Thanks for putting things in good perspective.

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