Game 61, Mariners at Rays

Jay Yencich · June 7, 2014 at 1:55 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

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.


45 Responses to “Game 61, Mariners at Rays”

  1. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:05 pm

    Thanks for the thread and info Jay. I was thinking the delay might be due to rain was coming through the Tropicana roof. Too bad that didn’t happen last night.

  2. msfanmike on June 7th, 2014 2:05 pm

    It was Tommy Lasorda who got drilled by the flying bat at the 2001 all star game.

    Zimmer got plunked by a foul ball – once in the dugout as a bench coach for the Yankees and was given a military helmet to wear the next day (by Jeter I believe) … But that occurred in a different year. Zimmer had suffered a horrific beaning incident during his playing days and lives the majority of his life with a metal plate in his head

  3. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:05 pm

    A bit late but thanks for the home Cole.

  4. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:07 pm

    And TB comes right back. Am I correct to think the M’s don’t like playing in Tropicana? Is it worse than the Kingdome?

  5. Jay Yencich on June 7th, 2014 2:07 pm

    It was Tommy Lasorda who got drilled by the flying bat at the 2001 all star game.

    I’ll fix it…

  6. islandan on June 7th, 2014 2:09 pm

    What is the M’s fascination with Endy Chavez? Is this organization expecting a massive breakout campaign from a 36 year old? I mean its not like the others are world beater’s either, but, Chavez is on the downside, a long ways on it…….and leading off too. Good gawd…….

  7. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:10 pm

    Endy having a good day. Getting on base like you want from a leadoff batter. Come on Robinson.

  8. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:13 pm

    Time to go yard Kyle.

  9. Paul B on June 7th, 2014 2:21 pm

    At least with Saunders hurt and Ackley DH, there is a reason to start Endy. It just reinforces something we all knew 6 months ago, the tesm is very weak in the OF.

  10. californiamariner on June 7th, 2014 2:33 pm


  11. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 2:42 pm

    Cano, Seager, Zunino need to get in on the action.

  12. juneau_fan on June 7th, 2014 2:46 pm

    And Edie gives a bit 😛 to us…

  13. juneau_fan on June 7th, 2014 2:52 pm

    I loath Jeter. Will be so happy when this year is over, other than it’ll be the endless hand jerk over him getting into the HOF. On the radio side, Rizz is telling us that Jeter said he was all ready to give away that ball that he didn’t realize wasn’t foul and the Mariners scored on. Working so hard at being the Nice Guy, he didn’t bother to play the game.

  14. Paul B on June 7th, 2014 2:53 pm

    Kyle Ackley? Oh, Sims.

  15. Paul B on June 7th, 2014 2:55 pm

    Highlights called it.

  16. californiamariner on June 7th, 2014 2:55 pm

    Ackley! Nice to see some offense

  17. matthew on June 7th, 2014 2:56 pm

    Sigh. Kyle Ackley. At least he didn’t say Kyle Gutiérrez.

  18. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 3:00 pm

    Cano, Seager, Zunino joins the party!

  19. Longgeorge1 on June 7th, 2014 3:02 pm


  20. djw on June 7th, 2014 3:31 pm

    These lineups can’t keep winning. Not that I’m terribly optimistic about him, but shouldn’t we be seeing Morrison pretty soon here? He’s been rehabbing for 2 weeks now.

  21. juneau_fan on June 7th, 2014 3:43 pm

    Can I count on these guys to hold on for another couple of innings? I need to take the recycling to the dump…

  22. Longgeorge1 on June 7th, 2014 3:52 pm

    With Felix, Hisashi and Roenis pitching the M’s could win with some fairly feeble line-ups.

  23. BoomBoom on June 7th, 2014 4:18 pm

    That was quite an adventurous route Jones took on that fly ball. You have to love the athleticism to recover and the big smile after…he often appears to be having more fun than everyone else.

  24. californiamariner on June 7th, 2014 4:21 pm

    Rodney has been a little too steady lately. I don’t know what to think

  25. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 4:28 pm

    California…don’t jinx Rodney. Ever since many started commenting how Jekyll & Hyde he can be, he appears to have enabled his flight stabilizers.

  26. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 4:31 pm

    I really don’t see LoMo coming back to be of any assist to the team, unless Smoak is DFA.

  27. G-Man on June 7th, 2014 4:38 pm

    Why Chavez over Romero, I can’t fathom.

    I had missed the inning where Elias threw home and Zunino relayed it to first for the out. It reminded me of a rec league softball play.

  28. _Hutch_ on June 7th, 2014 5:07 pm

    Smoak better pull out one of those patented four-week hot streaks because I’m about done with him.

  29. Westside guy on June 7th, 2014 5:08 pm

    I remember Pedro Martinez throwing Don Zimmer to the ground during a dugout-clearing brawl. I don’t know why Zimmer was out there though – he was in his 60s at that point, if I recall correctly.

  30. Woodcutta on June 7th, 2014 5:24 pm

    Maybe, just maybe, the M’s coaching staff is thinking about defense when playing Chavez over Romero.

  31. Woodcutta on June 7th, 2014 5:27 pm


    Apparently that roof is horrible for outfielders as not only isn’t it one color but one of the colors causes outfielders to lose the ball. Since Jones has actually played solid defense I’m going to go with that. I don’t think I could take another young Mariner with potential forgetting how to play baseball.

  32. Kazinski on June 7th, 2014 5:30 pm

    I think they should bring up Montero to DH and backup 1st base. He isn’t destroying AAA pitching, but he’s pretty much matching his AAA numbers in the Yankee system when he was deemed ready to reach the majors. Its not ideal, but it beats putting Bloomquist out there. Even if Montero isn’t ready to play 1b in the majors, then he can DH, and Ackley can play 1b instead of Willie, or play lf instead of Chavez.

    They can’t keep putting Chavez and Willie out there 4 days a week. I certainly like the way Gillespie has emerged in June, his ISO was .000 in May, and he definitely showed he has more power than that today. Gillespie raised his ISO for the season from .056 to .125 with the HR today.

  33. HighlightsAt11 on June 7th, 2014 6:57 pm

    Thank goodness for BloomQ in June and late May (inclusive of May 23).

  34. stevemotivateir on June 7th, 2014 7:25 pm

    Morrison should be back in a week or so. I would be surprised if he wasn’t given a hard look at first base at that point.

  35. dc24 on June 7th, 2014 7:59 pm

    I think we’ve got to do something with Smoak and yeah, Bloomquist isn’t the answer. I’d be ok with putting Ackley there and of course Morrison is coming back there, but then you still have too many lefties. I’d love if Montero could do it, but I’m not sure I want to give him a try. So yeah, we’ll see what happens.

  36. Kazinski on June 7th, 2014 8:15 pm

    Morrison and Montero are not mutually exclusive options. They can replace Romero and Chavez with Montero and Morrison. Of course that leaves Saunders backing up Jones in CF, and the Condor needs to be completely healthy for them to assume that risk. But if it comes down to an emergency, Ackley or Bloomquist can play a few innings at CF and it wouldn’t be a total disaster.

    They really need help on offense, and as good as Bloomquist and Chavez have been at spots, they just are not going to be everyday offensive or defensive contributors.

    By the way has Jones turned into a pumpkin? His slash line last 2 weeks is: .217/.217/.239. Miller on the other hand looks moderately competent last two weeks: .222/.323/.333, so that is certainly helping.

  37. djw on June 7th, 2014 8:43 pm

    I really don’t see LoMo coming back to be of any assist to the team, unless Smoak is DFA.

    He seems more likely to produce above replacement level than Chavez, Romero, Jones, or Bloomquist going forward. Not likely, mind you, just more likely.

  38. djw on June 7th, 2014 8:45 pm

    (And setting aside a bit of luck so far, Gillaspie isn’t the answer to any questions we should be asking, either.)

  39. dc24 on June 7th, 2014 9:05 pm

    Well they don’t even have to swap out Chavez and Romero, in theory if they got rid of Smoak, which I’m sure is a big if, then they’d only have to get rid of one, but damn, I don’t know which one of the three I want. Hell I’m not excited about any of the five in question, but I’m tired of seeing Smoak playing every day and sucking it up. Surely Morrison could be better. Montero did smash lefties in 2012, so maybe that’s not a bad platoon option.

    You could get rid of Gillespie too I suppose. I don’t know what the answer is, but I know one thing it isn’t and it’s Smoak.

  40. Kazinski on June 7th, 2014 10:57 pm

    Why would you get rid of Smoak to keep Chavez? And Romero has lots of options, Romero has been heating up as of late, but I like Montero as the designated lefty masher over Stephan. LoMo gives you a left hander to trot out at dh, and an extra body to play OF if needed.

    I kind of like Lloyd’s propensity to run it rh heavy or LF heavy lineups, but platooning different sets of banjo hitters is not a recipe for success.

  41. dc24 on June 7th, 2014 11:22 pm

    Well I’ll answer your question with a question, why do you want to keep Smoak? I like Chavez in small doses. Plays decent defense and can run a bit, but he’s another left-handed bat and I know he doesn’t hit much now so I’m not opposed to losing him either.

    You’re talking about a DH platoon and I’m talking about a 1B platoon. Smoak might as well be Endy Chavez from the right-side of the plate and he hasn’t been hitting much as a lefty either. I don’t know if he has any options left, but I’d rather him go down and see if he can hit AAA pitching. If not, I don’t care about losing him and trading him for anything really. He’s terrible. His best asset has been his defense.

    Basically, I just want Smoak gone if you can’t tell haha and I have been patient with him, as many of you have, but I can barely watch him anymore.

  42. naviomelo on June 8th, 2014 3:05 am

    Endy having a good day. Getting on base like you want from a leadoff batter. Come on Robinson.

    Isn’t the idea that we hope for the whole team to get on base? I’ve never understood why it’s any more critical for the #1 hitter to get on base than it is for another hitter who leads off an inning.

  43. bookbook on June 8th, 2014 4:45 am

    Smoak is a definite need for an upgrade. That he isn’t among the most desperate needs on this team highlights how improbable this .500+ year has been.

  44. jak924 on June 8th, 2014 7:29 am

    Twins can have Kendrys Morales. Out of shape, base-clogger with a big butt and no range.

  45. stevemotivateir on June 8th, 2014 8:54 am

    I really don’t get why people care so much about lefty-heavy lineups. They’ll face more right handed starters, and if the hitter can hit lefties decent anyway, who cares which way he bats?

    Point is, I have no problem with the M’s acquiring a better outfielder and first baseman regardless of which way they bat.

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