Game 61, Mariners at Rays
I’m still sitting here, typing away at draft-related stuff, so why not throw up a thread? I’m not going to be as in-depth as Marc here, but I can do something.
The lineup again has a new look, with the order running with Chavez in left, Jones in center, Cano at second, Seager at third, Zunino behind the plate, Ackley at DH, Gillespie in right, Miller at short, and Bloomquist at first. Production-wise, we could’ve been batting our first baseman ninth the past month anyway. Saunders is out because his right shoulder is barking at him again. Smoak is out not due to lack of performance but a sore quad which has slowed him down from “stone in Racetrack Playa” to “possibly a pre-climate change glacier.” Ji-Man Choi should be back into Tacoma within the next couple of days. I am merely saying.
On the mound for the Mariners is beloved enigma Roenis Elias. I swear, I knew about him before this year. On the mound for the Rays is right-handed change-up artist Alex Cobb. Note that this year he’s allowing a .160/.192/.280 line against left-handers and a .288/.379/.397 line against right-handers. It seems like justification to play Gillespie to me [he hit a dinger as I typed this!], but I also probably would have thrown Romero out there to see what happens. The change is Cobb’s only consistently above-average pitch for his career, so playing strict L/R splits seems less than wise.
Today’s game start was delayed by the tribute to Don Zimmer. I wish I had something more substantive to say about someone who has had such an impact on baseball all around the world. I’m trying now to learn more about him via Wikipedia and have picked up that, before he even made the major leagues, he was hit in the head by a pitch and knocked unconscious for nearly two weeks during which time they had to drill multiple holes in his head to relieve pressure. Batting helmets have added so much to the game.