Game 96, Mariners at Rays

marc w · July 21, 2012 at 3:18 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Jason Vargas vs. Alex Cobb, 4:10pm

After a tough loss last night, the M’s face the Rays and right-hander Alex Cobb this afternoon. Jason Vargas looks to avoid extending his lead in HRs allowed; he’s built quite a lead over Hector Noesi and five other pitchers tied 5 HRs back. He’s also trying to escape a 13th consecutive start with at least one HR allowed – he’s given up 20 in his current 12-start streak. Since his disaster start in Arizona, Vargas has been tough, though. He’s 2-0 with 22 strikeouts and 8 walks in 29 2/3 IP over 4 starts.

Alex Cobb’s a splitter-throwing GB machine who forced his way up to the big leagues last year (before uberprospect Matt Moore) with a brilliant run for AAA Durham. He mixes a four-seam and two-seam fastball at around 90-92, a rarely used slider, a curve ball and a splitter-change that he’ll use as much as 33-40% of his pitches. Gameday classes it as a change, but Brooksbaseball calls it a splitter, and this picture would seem to lend credence to that categorization. The pitch is a tick slower, but has very similar movement to Hisashi Iwakuma’s. In all, I think Cobb and Iwakuma are pretty good comps – similar velo (though Iwakuma may throw a bit harder), good ground ball rates, solid K numbers, so-so command. So how does Cobb get away with tiny HR rates while Iwakuma’s running 20%+ HR/FB rates? I don’t know, but if I was the M’s, I’d be trying to find out.

Today’s line-up:
1: Ackley
2: Ichiro
3: Wells (LF)
4: Jaso (C)
5: Seager
6: Saunders
7: Smoak
8: Peguero (DH)
9: Kawasaki (SS)
SP: Vargas

The Jackson Generals have a doubleheader today, with James Paxton pitching game 1 and Anthony Fernandez going in game 2. Game 1’s half over, but you can tune in to MiLB gameday audio here. Paxton’s given up 1 run through 4 IP with 3 Ks and no walks. He’d pointed to his knee problem as a contributor to his command problems early in the year, and he may have been right: he’s given up just 3 walks in his 18 1/3 IP since coming off the DL (against 19 Ks).

South African pitching prospect Dylan Unsworth pitched the Everett Aqua Sox to the first-half division title last night in the Northwest League. He had ridiculous K:BB ratios is the Arizona League, but that didn’t quite carry over when he moved up to Pulaski. Another blow for the reliability of complex-league stats? Maybe not – he’s not walked anyone in his last two starts, striking out 14 in 13 innings.



114 Responses to “Game 96, Mariners at Rays”

  1. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:18 pm

    Wooooo – bendy !!!!!!!!

  2. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:18 pm


  3. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:19 pm

    A chance to win the series tomorrow!!!

    Oh, Beavan is pitching…

  4. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:20 pm

    Yay – win.

    Boo – low scoring high K indoor baseball on plastic grass!!!

  5. Jim_H on July 21st, 2012 7:21 pm

    The Bartenders Uncle Charlie is a thing of beauty!

  6. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:22 pm

    Thanks for the Beavan reminder, Westy.

    Maybe Tampa will throw Lueke tomorrow and we can see all three of the ’10 trade studs – in the same game.

  7. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:23 pm

    Brendan Ryan needs to coach some of these guys regarding their on-camera personality.

  8. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:24 pm

    … Assuming they call him up from AA or wherever he is currently “dominating.”

    Jack was able to turn him into Jaso, though – so that part of it worked out.

  9. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:46 pm

    So how are we all currently feeling about giving away Phillippe Aumont, J.C. Ramirez, and Tyson Gillies to get Justin Smoak?

    (It’s less painful to think of it that way)

  10. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 8:02 pm

    That is less painful. What’s hard to figure is the way they are handling Smoak. Why let a young player who is/was allegedly a prospect, hang on the vine and just get worse? What other org would handle it in this manner? Wells turnaround is credited to his demotion whereby he worked on some “things”.

    Actually, Wells just needed some regular playing time. Smoak has been getting a ton of playing time and literally imploding. Are they trying to save on air fare? Demote him right now. Bring in A-N-Y-B-O-D-Y else. Anybody. It does not matter who it is. Anybody who can fog a mirror would be fine.

  11. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 8:08 pm

    It’s funny – I was trying to remember who the other two were besides Aumont… and I ran across this recent article:

  12. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 8:26 pm

    I’m kinda tired of seeing inner-organizational moves. I’m ready to see personal brought in. Corner infielder, outfielders, DH, third base coach, hitting (hold back laughs) instructor, etc.

  13. samregens on July 21st, 2012 10:32 pm

    Smoak and Ackley need some time in AAA.
    Enough is enough, sheesh.

  14. raul_podzednick on July 23rd, 2012 8:58 am

    Just getting Jon Jaso for those 3 would have been a good deal.

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