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.

GO M’S!

Comments

114 Responses to “Game 96, Mariners at Rays”

  1. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 3:24 pm

    I’d say we have a decent lineup to throw against a guy like Cobb.

    And Peggy could end up looking very good (if Cobb doesn’t have his command) or very foolish (if Cobb does have his command) today. Really, I can’t complain about Peggy being in today’s lineup, given the lack of alternatives.

  2. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 3:35 pm

    Nice to see Smoak lower in the order. If it results in one less bad-AB, I’ll call it a success.

    If you all haven’t heard yet, Guti is apparently being shut-down. I don’t know if that means his season’s done, or if he’s going on the 60 day DL, but he’s experiencing headaches, which appear to be related. Hopefully this doesn’t mean more Peguero.

  3. Cresswell on July 21st, 2012 4:05 pm

    On the road … Ms are 6th in AL in BA, 10th in OBA, 3rd (!) in SA. 6th in OPS. 1st in triples 4th in HRs.

    Now think about how the stats look if we keep Figgins and Olivo off the field.

    RPG 2.86 at home, 4.98 on road. RA PG 3.09 at home, 4.66 on road.

    Both ratios imply the same W% of about .464, so if you change Safeco’s dimensions, the main reason wouldn’t be to win games, it would be to make the hitters hate themselves a little less, and for home fans to see some runs.

    Away stats for several players quite impressive.

  4. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:10 pm

    I want to see Guti in the lineup, but I don’t want them to rush him back – I’m glad they’re playing it cautiously. Understanding concussions still seems to be a work in progress.

  5. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 4:19 pm

    Yeah, I agree. I’d love to see him back, but not if he’s at-risk. They had just put him on the 15 day DL on the 19th, but he was traveling with the team, and was expected to begin his rehab starts any day.
    Really feel for the guy. One thing after another.

  6. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:21 pm

    Jaso! (and, previously, Wells did a good job working his walk)

  7. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:25 pm

    Good spot to have Condor come up – Cobb having control issues, and Saunders is probably the most patient hitter we’ve got.

  8. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:28 pm

    Condor!!

  9. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 4:29 pm

    I am so glad Saunders was hitting in that spot, instead.

  10. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:30 pm

    I am SO GLAD Wedge finally figured out Saunders should be hitting ahead of Smoak…

    haha, great minds and all that Mike!

  11. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 4:31 pm

    … And Smoak highlights the reason why. Again.

    Please send him away, Jack.

  12. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 4:31 pm

    Of course, the only problem with Smoak hitting lower in the order, is that he’s still in the line-up! At least he didn’t hit into a DP.

  13. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 4:37 pm

    Pena’s numbers almost mirror Smoak’s??!!

    I guess the Mariners are getting a hell of a deal in comparison.

    And by that, I mean the few numbers they showed (Avg, HR, RBI). I shall delve deeper.

  14. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:44 pm

    Hey, Peggy!

  15. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 4:47 pm

    OOH, I wanna see a suicide squeeze here!

    It’d scare the catcher to death!!

    Uh… nevermind.

  16. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 4:49 pm

    Holy crap, Ackley.

  17. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 5:02 pm

    Guti’s just shut down for the weekend. The poor guy can’t stay healthy. I don’t think we can count on him.

  18. Kazinski on July 21st, 2012 5:05 pm

    How does Ichiro not get that scored a hit? The pitcher had no chance to get him, there was no force on Peguero. I suppose its not the biggest thing to be concerned with with Cobb knocked out of the game, but that should have been scored as a single.

  19. Paul B on July 21st, 2012 5:05 pm

    I kind of keep some sort of hope that Peggy will improve his contact rate and turn in some sort of career like, oh I don’t know, maybe Frank Howard. Or Dave Kingman.

    it’s more likely he’ll be closer to Miguel Olivo, though, as a hitter.

  20. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 5:07 pm

    I think the Kingman comparison is good (as a ceiling).

  21. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:09 pm

    Peguero needs to improve a fair bit just to reach Olivo territory. Let’s see him get there before we start talking about Kingman or Howard. ;-)

  22. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 5:15 pm

    Let us dream, Westy!

  23. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:17 pm

    He’s laying off at least one bad pitch in most at-bats. What more do you want?! Geez

  24. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:18 pm

    Not much harm in dreaming, Waco! And it’s not like he’s stealing ABs from someone more deserving right now.

    Hehehe Steve

  25. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 5:19 pm

    I want Carp to get regular AB come Monday.

  26. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:22 pm

    Haha, boy that Buhner trade was even more lopsided than I thought! They sent us THREE guys?!

  27. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:22 pm

    I would bet a jar of salsa that Carp replaces Smoak.

  28. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:23 pm

    The Legend of Smoak continues to grow…

  29. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:24 pm

    Smoak’s hardly making a case for himself.

  30. Paul B on July 21st, 2012 5:24 pm

    Peggy is already as good a hitter as Olivo (check their wOBA last year and this year). Of course, that is still worse than replacement level…

  31. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:27 pm

    Well, I was looking at Peggy’s major-league strikeout rate. His productivity, such as it is, would likely drop over time as the scouting on him improved – unless he can fix that.

  32. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:28 pm

    “Good” is probably the wrong descriptive word to use with Olivo or Peguero.

  33. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:32 pm

    Hehe, well Paul did qualify his “good”, Steve. :-D

  34. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:34 pm

    Oh I know, I was just havin’ fun;)

  35. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:37 pm

    Peggy is already as good* a hitter as Olivo

    *For sufficiently loose definitions of “good”

  36. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 5:42 pm

    He’s no worse than a few players ;)

  37. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:52 pm

    Vargas is holding his own so far!

  38. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 5:58 pm

    “Smoak having a tough night”

    Blow, you’ll need to be a little more specific.

  39. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:02 pm

    Would have been more accurate to say “Smoak’s having a typical night”.

  40. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:02 pm

    I doubt that Smoak could hit the floor with his hat – on a consistent basis.

  41. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:07 pm

    What do you suppose Smoak’s wOFA would me, Mike?

    (wOFA = weighted on-floor average)

  42. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:08 pm

    That reminds me of that instructional piece ROOT sports did with Smoak, Mike. Justin talked about hitting to ball from a tee. I wonder if he struggles with that as well.

  43. Paul B on July 21st, 2012 6:13 pm

    Smoak does remind me of how helpless Saunders was at the plate last year.

  44. Paul B on July 21st, 2012 6:14 pm

    Root just showed UZR.

  45. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:15 pm

    I’m starting to wonder if Ackely shouldn’t see some AAA time as well. He’s too good of a hitter to suck like this. He should be able to get things figured out, but maybe Tacoma’s the place for that?

  46. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:15 pm

    You have stumped the band, Westy. I cant think of a single smart assed thing to say. I must be having an off night.

    I would really like to see Ackley not get behind 0-2 this next time up.

  47. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:15 pm

    Peggy is doing his best to give you guys hope, Waco!

  48. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:16 pm

    Steve, I can’t disagree with your reasoning… but I’m not sure who the team could call up to replace Ackley.

    I’m not eager to see Liddi again, personally.

  49. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:17 pm

    Louis Rodriguez. I could live with that, as long as it doesn’t last too long.

  50. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:18 pm

    I dunno about this – even with the handed matchup, I think I’d just as soon pitch to 2012 Ichiro as to 2012 Wells.

  51. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:19 pm

    Well, I should have been more specific, but he definitely did not get behind 0-2 that time.

    Walking Ichiro, huh?

    Make them pay, Casper.

  52. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:21 pm

    I must admit I completely forgot about L-Rod, Steve.

    I’d go for that as long as they put him at 2B. I think Seager is our 3B of the future, so I want to see him stay there.

  53. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:23 pm

    Yeah, Seager’s probably better off staying put.

  54. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:24 pm

    Vargas’ pitch count is getting up there. Hopefully this inning will go fast.

  55. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:24 pm

    Peguero! lol. I think Ackley and Smoak both could use some kind of change to get out of this funk. I’m worried Smoak is hopeless, but Ackley just seems too talented to not figure it out.

  56. Kazinski on July 21st, 2012 6:24 pm

    Accorcing to ZIP Peguero is a better hitter than Olivo now. That’s not saying much, and I don’t think they are competing for AB’s. Olivo is more useful defensively, so I guess if they are competing for a roster spot then Olivo should get the nod.

    But I think in a situation where you know the manager of the other team is going to bring in the same handed reliever to face Peguero or Olivo with the game on the line, I’d go with Peguero right now. Of course I’d think pinch hitting Jason Vargas would be better than either one of them.

  57. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:25 pm

    ICHIRO STOP DOING THAT.

  58. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:26 pm

    Something is up with Ichiro. Could just be aging, but he seems off.

  59. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:27 pm

    Shitty decision. Shittier throw. Scored a run, eliminated DP possibility and Put the tying run into scoring position. The tri-fecta of bonehead baseball. Good God, Ichiro.

  60. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:29 pm

    Uptown came through like a Mariner.

  61. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:29 pm

    I think Ichiro read Dave’s article from a few days ago and is trying to prove he’s not old. :-D

  62. Breadbaker on July 21st, 2012 6:29 pm

    The infield fly rule was so completely not in effect, Mr. Sims, that you should be ashamed.

  63. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:30 pm

    Maybe it was the infield foul rule, Breadbaker? ;-)

  64. Breadbaker on July 21st, 2012 6:33 pm

    LOL.

  65. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:34 pm

    Perez!

  66. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:36 pm

    Seems like a lot of Jack Z’s bargain bin relievers have panned out.

  67. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:37 pm

    Sims is a two time Emmy Award winning play by play announcer, but it obviously was not because of his understanding of baseball rules.

    I realize this fact will probably put Steve over the edge and make him want to move to South America.

  68. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:40 pm

    Seager, gimme an insurance run, now!

  69. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:42 pm

    I know Seager has come through a few times recently (and all year obviously), but overall his average has been tanking lately.

  70. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:44 pm

    Good thing we got a couple runs off the starter eh?

  71. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:45 pm

    August 8th, Mike.

  72. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:45 pm

    Maybe he should go down with Ackley and Smoak…

  73. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:45 pm

    Thats at least two “quick pitches” tonight. Good deception. Old school, indeed.

  74. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:47 pm

    Seager has at least shown the ability to make an adjustment and break out of slumps. I wouldn’t send him down. Not much to offer as a replacement, anyway. Figgins? Liddi?

  75. argh on July 21st, 2012 6:47 pm

    I think we can conclude the fairy dust of Kansas City has all been blown away. At least Vargas didn’t give up a gopher.

  76. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:48 pm

    On your way down there, please stop in Mexico and see if you can figure out this Mayan Calendar problem.

  77. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:48 pm

    Wonder if this was his last start as a Mariner?

  78. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:49 pm

    13 K’s tonight through 8. I thought 17 K’s in 14 was bad.

  79. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:50 pm

    Just looking at BABIP, Seager’s probably been a bit unlucky the last couple months.

    Conversely he might’ve been just a tad lucky before that; but still I think he’s been a nice surprise.

  80. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:50 pm

    There’s no problem with it, Mike. Just pretend it’s the end of the Mariners-suck cycle.

  81. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 6:51 pm

    Good point, steve.

  82. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 6:51 pm

    Hehe, would that make him Indiana Steve, Mike?

    Steve, if you do as Mike asked – please remember to bring your bullwhip.

  83. marcus_andrews on July 21st, 2012 6:54 pm

    Please sell high on Brandon League right now!

  84. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 6:56 pm

    There will be no stops in Mexico for me. If I had a bullwhip, I would, but I don’t, so I’ll just keep going.

  85. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:57 pm

    Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the crystallized in place Smoak.

  86. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:58 pm

    Go away go away go away go away go away go away go away go away
    Away
    Away
    Away
    Away
    Away

    You wreak.

  87. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 6:59 pm

    Ditto

  88. marcus_andrews on July 21st, 2012 7:00 pm

    Has Luis Antonio Jiminez played any first base at all? I say give him a shot for a bit. It would be better than watching Smoak any more this year.

  89. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:00 pm

    MUNI!!

  90. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 7:00 pm

    Never would have guessed we’d see back to back K’s from those two. Maybe there is something to that Mayan calendar?

  91. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:03 pm

    Hey if Peggy could get two hits every game, I wouldn’t complain if he struck out every other plate appearance. :-D

  92. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:03 pm

    Anybody want to bet against team Japan in the next WBC? With Mune doing stand up and Daiske throwing his bugs bunny pitch, and with a 39 year old RF, they will still probably kick everyone’s ass. Again.

    I am not sure where that random thought came from.

  93. The_Waco_Kid on July 21st, 2012 7:04 pm

    Smoak’s kinda having a 3-year slump.

  94. argh on July 21st, 2012 7:04 pm

    I’m living in fear of another extra innings game. It’ll likely be like watching a sadistic matador killing a really clumsy bull.

  95. stevemotivateir on July 21st, 2012 7:06 pm

    At least Ackley got on.

  96. msfanmike on July 21st, 2012 7:06 pm

    Peguero has two hits today? I missed them both. I will take away one half of one “t” from that “ditto” for now.

  97. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:07 pm

    Hehe Waco.

    Yeah, Mike, two singles!

  98. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:09 pm

    Casper Wells will hit a grand salami.

    Someday.

  99. Westside guy on July 21st, 2012 7:13 pm

    Speaking of aging Japanese superstars…

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

    It’s nice having a closer who can throw more than one type of pitch.

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

    Wooooo – bendy !!!!!!!!

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

    YEAH!!

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

    A chance to win the series tomorrow!!!

    Oh, Beavan is pitching…

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

    Yay – win.

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

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

    The Bartenders Uncle Charlie is a thing of beauty!

  106. 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.

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

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

  108. 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.

  109. 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)

  110. 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.

  111. 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:

    http://www.phillyburbs.com/sports/phillies/phils-ville/the-results-are-in-cliff-lee-trade-officially-a-bust/article_bf869eb6-d272-11e1-91df-001a4bcf6878.html

  112. 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.

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

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

  114. 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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