Game 110, Mariners at Yankees

marc w · August 5, 2012 at 9:17 am · Filed Under Mariners 

Hisashi Iwakuma vs. Freddie Garcia, 10:05am

Iwakuma’s taken hold of his rotation spot, and is suddenly one of the more interesting stories for the M’s. The right-hander signed a one year contract, and for three months, it looked like he might head back to Japan or perhaps move to the bullpen in 2013. After a 13 strikeout game against Toronto, he’s now got 23 Ks to 7 walks in his last three starts after struggling with his command in his first few outings as a starter. He doesn’t seem to have made any major changes, though he’s throwing his slow curve a lot less and his slider a lot more. I’m still not convinced his slider’s a great pitch in isolation, but pitching is all about context – his slider has virtually identical vertical movement to his split-finger pitch, but it has the opposite horizontal movement. Not only does the slider give him a breaking ball to attack righties with (so he won’t have Delabar-esque reverse splits), but it could conceivably help his splitter by delaying the hitters’ reaction/recognition time. This isn’t some miracle pitch or anything – Derek Jeter drilled an Iwakuma slider out of Safeco leading off a couple of weeks ago, but it’s clear that something’s changed for Iwakuma, and I think his pitch mix may be part of the story.

The Yankees had their streak of 21 consecutive home games with at least one HR snapped yesterday, and Iwakuma’s not the type of pitcher who limits HRs, so the M’s are going to need to score some runs. They got to Garcia early in Seattle, but the left-handed bats should keep the pressure on and not let Garcia settle in the way they did in Seattle.

The injury to Brendan Ryan necessitates a jury-rigged line-up today with Kawasaki at short and Seager moving to 3B to accommodate Chone Figgins. That’s not ideal, but the M’s are about as lefty-heavy as they’re capable of.

Line-up:
1: Ackley (1B)
2: Saunders (CF)
3: Montero (C)
4: Jaso (DH)
5: Seager (2B)
6: Thames (RF)
7: Robinson (LF)
8: Kawasaki (SS)
9: Figgins (3B)
SP: Iwakuma

Go M’s!

Comments

72 Responses to “Game 110, Mariners at Yankees”

  1. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 9:49 am

    Figgins is in the lineup and Carp is not – Because of a “family situation” for Carp in California (per Brad Adam). He is supposed to be back in the lineup tomorrow.

  2. Hammy57 on August 5th, 2012 10:01 am

    Carp went home to be with his wife and brand new baby daughter.

  3. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:08 am

    Saunders is in, so they have to win today.

  4. thurston24 on August 5th, 2012 10:09 am

    You mean Seager is at second instead of third right?

  5. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:10 am

    Come on Montero, knock in Ackley!

  6. thurston24 on August 5th, 2012 10:12 am

    Would anyone else like to see Ackley play the outfield too? Position versatility is always a good thing. If he could play outfield, second and first, it would be a boon. Especially if he starts hitting again too.

  7. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:12 am

    Montero hit a right-handed pitcher!!!

  8. georgmi on August 5th, 2012 10:19 am

    Please tell me Montero ran through the stop sign there; I could tell from my couch the throw was going to beat him by a mile.

  9. r-gordon-7 on August 5th, 2012 10:26 am

    Well, he “proceeded” through the stop sign. “Ran” might be a bit of a stretch in describing what Montero did… ;-)

  10. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:28 am

    This has been a long inning.

  11. georgmi on August 5th, 2012 10:28 am

    In fairness, I bet he’d beat me in a foot race. ‘Course, I make my living sitting on my ass.

  12. Hammy57 on August 5th, 2012 10:34 am

    What the hell happened with that shift? A grounder to second and Texeira beats it out?

  13. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:38 am

    Okay, I missed the first inning. Did Saunders really sacrifice bunt with no outs in the first?

    Am I going to have to slap a mustache?

  14. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:40 am

    Yeah. Didn’t understand that at all.

  15. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:40 am

    What the hell happened with that shift? A grounder to second and Texeira beats it out?

    It’s hard to do a shift with a guy on second, as they can’t really hold the guy on very easily, I think.

  16. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:42 am

    The M’s 6-9 today has to be one of the worst in baseball history at this point in the season.

  17. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 10:43 am

    I missed the first inning as well, Henry.

    I hope Wedge is a magical dude in the clubhouse, because when it comes to managing the actual game he actively hurts the team.

    Was there a camera shot of Joe Girardi laughing when Wedge did that? ;-)

  18. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 10:44 am

    I’m overweight and old – and I bet I could keep up with Montero over a 60-foot distance.

  19. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 10:45 am

    WHAT was THAT, Muni??? hahahahahhaah!!!!

  20. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:46 am

    wRC+:
    Thames: 79
    Robinson: 68
    Mune: 26
    Figgins: 48

    That adds up to almost 2 good major league players.

  21. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 10:47 am

    Saunders might have gotten credit for a sacrifice, but he was clearly bunting for a hit. He tried to push the ball to the 2B, but did not get it past the pitcher.

  22. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:49 am

    Dustin Ackley’s average leading off: .237. I am officially tired of hearing that him not leading off made him worse from the moron media.

  23. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:50 am

    Saunders might have gotten credit for a sacrifice, but he was clearly bunting for a hit. He tried to push the ball to the 2B, but did not get it past the pitcher.

    Oh, okay, THAT makes sense.

    However, given that Nix is their 3B, I would be push bunting towards 3rd, not 2nd.

  24. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 10:50 am

    Oh, okay – thanks Mike. So maybe my annoyance with Wedge was misplaced there.

    In this instance anyway. :-D

  25. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 10:52 am

    Mune’s little dance there was the funniest thing ever.

  26. georgmi on August 5th, 2012 10:53 am

    I think the baseball world is a better place for having MunenorI Kawasaki in it.

  27. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 10:54 am

    Muni is a bad baseball player – yet I find myself hoping the Mariners bring him back next year…

  28. henryv on August 5th, 2012 10:57 am

    Generally, I think that baseball has too many wholesome boring white guys (cough… cough… Dustin Ackley) and needs more weird and/or creepy guys, like Brenden Ryan and Kawasaki.

  29. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 10:58 am

    This game might take 5 hours without any potential rain delay.

    Jesus, right through the wickets.

  30. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 11:01 am

    Did Ackley just let the ball go under his glove?

  31. henryv on August 5th, 2012 11:01 am

    It appears to me that the AL Cy Young is down to Felix, Sale and Verlander, and that’s about it. And I don’t think Sale will have the innings or the K’s to keep in it.

  32. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:03 am

    Oh Michael, you chased a really dumb pitch.

    Just based on the part of the game I’ve seen so far – if the Mariners would stop swinging at bad pitches, Garcia might walk a few runs in.

  33. henryv on August 5th, 2012 11:04 am

    Dustin Ackley’s OPS through 733 at bats is basically the same as Justin Smoak’s through 733 at bats.

  34. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:08 am

    Of course Ackley will need to tank over the next 300 or so PAs to really match Smoak.

  35. vetted_coach on August 5th, 2012 11:08 am

    Why weaken the entire infield? Play Figgins at 1B. That has cost the Mariners both Yankee runs.

    And I don’t want bad baseball players on my mlb club. What kind of an entitlement is that? Is this a joke? What do you suppose Muni’s WAR number is, given just about any AAA infielder is probably a better baseball player? (And quite possibly several AA guys).

  36. henryv on August 5th, 2012 11:12 am

    Of course Ackley will need to tank over the next 300 or so PAs to really match Smoak.

    Actually, he would only have to be slightly worse than he has been this year, seeing as Ackley’s OPS this year is not that much higher than Smoak’s.

  37. r-gordon-7 on August 5th, 2012 11:19 am

    Take away Muni from from the Ms, replace him with a much better ball player and what do you have? You still have a very bad ball club, but one that is much less fun to watch. I’m all for bringing him back next year…

  38. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 11:21 am

    At least Ackley’s been worth positive WAR though. He’ll have a longer leash than Smoak as well because he plays above average at a position of scarcity.

  39. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:27 am

    Muni’s WAR is terrible – but in terms of FAR (fun above replacement) he’s way, way off the charts good.

  40. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:39 am

    Didn’t Monty used to block balls with his body rather than stab at them with his glove, Olivo style?

    I seem to recall being favorably impressed with his blocking when he first caught for the M’s.

  41. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 11:44 am

    Well the runner was going to second, so I think he tried to stab at it to get the ball to his hand as soon as possible.

  42. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 11:45 am

    Who’s slower, Iwakuma or Beckett?

  43. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:53 am

    All right Condor! Jesus – let’s get something going here!

  44. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:54 am

    Good job by Monty there.

  45. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:56 am

    Of course with Monty on first now, Jaso just about needs to homer to avoid making the third out.

  46. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:57 am

    A walk works too – come on Seager!

  47. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 11:59 am

    It gets so frustrating seeing these guys swing at balls well out of the zone. Even when they manage to make contact, it’s weak contact most of the time – giving away an out.

  48. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:04 pm

    Crap, Raul.

  49. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:07 pm

    MLB.tv – Baseball Everywhere

    Unless, of course, you want to watch your local team… which is what most people will want to do. You’re not allowed to do that on MLB.tv.

    But if you want to watch teams you have no connection with – they’ll allow that!

  50. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:11 pm

    I’m glad Ackley was able to stay in contact with the bag on that throw…

    I’m with VC on this – why weaken the entire infield? Just put Figgins at first and be done with it.

  51. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:11 pm

    Welcome to Westside guy’s baseball blog, ladies and gentlemen. I’ll be making occasional play-by-play comments on the game.

  52. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:15 pm

    This should be a fast inning.

  53. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 12:15 pm

    What happened to USSM? I’ve only seen five or six guys commenting on the game threads.

  54. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:18 pm

    Not sure, wilchiro. Maybe it’s related to the team sucking for several years? It seems like LL’s threads have been down too (although still much, much bigger than USSM’s).

    Of course a Sunday day game exacerbates the situation.

  55. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 12:19 pm

    The Garcia-Iwakuma matchup put everyone into a trance of deep sleep.

    This particular pitching matchup (as well as the Mariner starting lineup today) should be banned from ever occurring again – via Constitutional Amendment.

  56. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 12:21 pm

    You can’t walk guys in this lineup, it’s going to hurt you later.

  57. terryoftacoma on August 5th, 2012 12:24 pm

    I don’t know about others but I mostly just watch the games these days. Haven’t had much to add to the conversations.

  58. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:33 pm

    Yeah, Terry, I understand the rest of us are setting a really high bar here. :-D

    Okay, things look like they’re going to get ugly in New York here. It looks like the Mariners winning ways only lasted while they were facing crappy teams…

  59. georgmi on August 5th, 2012 12:38 pm

    Amusing that “why aren’t there more comments?” is generating more comments than the game.

  60. wilchiro on August 5th, 2012 12:39 pm

    These guys are way too aggressive. It’s okay to take a ball.

  61. terryoftacoma on August 5th, 2012 12:40 pm

    Looking at the schedule for the rest of the year we only face 3 teams playing under .500. This could get brutal.

  62. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 12:43 pm

    I still believe there are reasons for hope with the Mariners, going forward. But it is concerning how some of these “can’t miss” guys are struggling.

  63. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 12:50 pm

    A line-drive in the books, for Ichiro.

  64. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 1:00 pm

    Well at least that one hit Saunders in the leg instead of in the face. :-D

    That has to be a helpless feeling.

  65. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 1:11 pm

    Kinda figured we might see Capps here – for a nice soft inning of work. Then again, maybe it would be better to not waste any potential enthusiasm, today.

    I think the Saunders cfERA is going to take a big hit today, Westy.

  66. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 1:16 pm

    Yeah, you’re right Mike. He’s obviously forgotten how to win – I’m bummed.

    I will have to take solace in Munenori Kawasaki’s continued dominance in FAR…

  67. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 1:23 pm

    Trayvon’s day explains why it is “better to be lucky than good.”

    Who is credited with that historic quote … Does anybody know?

  68. msfanmike on August 5th, 2012 1:40 pm

    Surprisingly, it was a pitcher who is credited with saying it:

    Lefty Gomez

  69. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 2:00 pm

    Somehow it makes sense that a baseball player came up with that one, Mike.

  70. henryv on August 5th, 2012 2:06 pm
  71. Westside guy on August 5th, 2012 2:16 pm

    Hahaha! But are you sure he wasn’t intentionally trying to blind himself after watching?

  72. stevemotivateir on August 6th, 2012 9:56 am

    The Dodgers DFA’d Tony Gwynn Jr. Wonder if the Mariners would be interested? I’d feel a lot more comfortable with him over Trayvon.

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