Game 8, Angels at Mariners

marc w · April 9, 2014 at 4:34 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Roenis Elias vs. Garrett Richards, 7:10pm

After spending much of yesterday’s game thread burying Albert Pujols and praising James Paxton, Pujols homered and Paxton’s lat strain sent him to the DL. We around here tend to frown on sloppy correlating, but I promise not to reference Pujols’ contract at all today.

The M’s improved to 5-2 yesterday, but the story of the game probably has to be the two big injuries. James Paxton’s “tweak” of his latissimus dorsi will hold him out for a few starts, while Josh Hamilton’s thumb injury will require surgery, costing the OF about two months. It’s very, very early in the season, but I’m not sure this could’ve gone any worse for the Halos. With several injuries to the Texas and Seattle rotations, the Angels had the opportunity to grab an early lead in a wide-open division. Instead, they’re 0-4 against the M’s, their bullpen’s struggled and they’re about to lose Hamilton for a good chunk of the season. To be fair, their slow start hasn’t impacted their playoff chances much at this point, but injuries and instability in the bullpen will make it tough for the Angels to dig out of this hole. It’s just a couple of games, but while we expected the gap between the Angels/Rangers and the M’s to have narrowed, I didn’t expect BOTH teams to look so flawed. Small Sample Schadenfreude.

Roenis Elias was solid in his first outing despite some questionable work behind the plate from Sean Barber. Today’s a different kind of test. The Angels’ extreme right-handed line-up looks to be a tougher match-up for a lefty like Elias with a lower arm angle. He didn’t pay for it against Cespedes/Donaldson/Crisp, and it’s not like replacing Josh Hamilton with JB Shuck makes the Angels a *better* offensive ball club, but I’m curious how he deals with Trout, Pujols, Kendrick, etc.

Garrett Richards is the hard-throwing righty who’d been terrible in college and the majors and only OK in the minors. He may have figured something out last year, as he was a pretty effective fill-in once Joe Blanton went supernova. I feel like I’ve written more about Richards than any other opposing player, which is odd and a little bit depressing.

1: Almonte, CF
2: Miller, SS
3: Cano, 2B
4: Smoak, 1B
5: Hart, DH
6: Seager, 3B
7: Morrison, RF
8: Ackley, LF
9: Zunino, C
SP: Roenis Elias

It’s too early to complain about PT, given that there’s been so little PT to go around, but when the time is right, Michael Saunders will ask some tough questions of his manager.

Lucas Luetge’s been recalled from Tacoma to take Paxton’s spot.

Edwin Diaz starts tonight for Clinton. Jimmy Gilheeney starts for Tacoma, who look set to actually get the game in today. The big story is Taijuan Walker making what’s looking like his final rehab start tonight for AA Jackson. He’ll go 85 pitches, and could be up soon. Iwakuma threw a bullpen and hasn’t complained of shooting pain, so he’ll probably head out for a rehab start or two in the next week.


59 Responses to “Game 8, Angels at Mariners”

  1. MrZDevotee on April 9th, 2014 10:05 pm

    They’re still teasing us… Are they YESTERDAY’s M’s, or today’s M’s…

    Nervous days ahead…

  2. HighlightsAt11 on April 9th, 2014 10:08 pm

    I should have said second to lowest…LoMo is bottom M BA.

    I’ve enjoyed the road games more. Low scoring Safeco games are too often boring affairs.

  3. Eastside Suds on April 9th, 2014 10:15 pm

    Tonight you just have to tip your hat to Mr. Richards. He threw the cb for a strike, painted the inside low corner to the lefties, changed speed and locations and just competed. I saw very few hitable pitches tonight. Friday is another day. King Felix Day!

  4. Westside guy on April 9th, 2014 11:25 pm

    Not worried about Seager, since his track record the past two years is good overall AND he provides value defensively.

    I really hope LoMo isn’t run out there forever a la Chone Figgins. There’s no good reason for him to be in the outfield even if he’s hitting… and he’s not hitting.

  5. MrZDevotee on April 10th, 2014 12:13 am

    It can’t be too long before Romero and Saunders are our right field platoon, and LoMo is backup 1B, alternate DH, pinch hitter in desperation, emergency OF, official team tweeter…

    He is who we thought he is… A flawed hitter with less than average defense, anywhere on the field.

  6. Paul B on April 10th, 2014 7:48 am

    Wish Franklin could play outfield. He could take a job away from Lo Mo, WFB, or if one of them craters, Ackley or Miller.

  7. seattleslew on April 10th, 2014 6:02 pm

    Pineda is throwing well. What’s Jesus doing?

  8. tmesis on April 10th, 2014 6:06 pm

    If I remember Sunday School correctly, He’s about to have a rather bad time of it: 3 days on the DL.

  9. Westside guy on April 10th, 2014 8:05 pm

    Tmesis, that was hilarious!

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