Game 36, Red Sox at Mariners

marc w · May 16, 2015 at 4:10 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

King Felix vs. Rick Porcello, 6:10pm

The Red Sox made a very expensive bet that Rick Porcello’s somewhat underwhelming tenure in Detroit was the result of growing pains and a focus on pitching to contact. Porcello was a prep phenom who dropped to the Tigers in the 2007 draft. He flew threw the minors thanks to a hard sinker and joined the Detroit rotation in 2009. Those who scouted him in the draft were always a bit confused that Porcello missed so few bats. Porcello’s always had a strong GB rate, but thanks either to some ill-timed pitches, bad sequencing luck, or a bad Tigers defense, his actual runs allowed always came in higher than his FIP suggested. At only 26, Porcello’s one of the youngest hurlers to, er, almost hit free agency in a while. All of these factors – the rumored great breaking ball that the Tigers wouldn’t let him throw, the FIP, and his youth combined to score Porcello an extension from 2016-19 that’ll pay him over $20m per year.

Thus far, like pretty much everything about the Red Sox, things haven’t quite gone as planned. Porcello is pitching differently, and he’s using a four seam fastball more than he ever has, and his K rate’s up a bit, but we’ve seen this from Porcello before. He’s tweaked his underwhelming slider into a hard cutter, but it hasn’t made it any more effective. His K:BB ratio’s up, but so is his HR rate. Thus far, it’s added up to a really familiar 4.50 ERA and a low-4’s FIP.

Here’s today’s line-up for the Seattle Steelheads, as the M’s pay tribute to the Negro League history of the northwest.

1: Smith, LF
2: Miller, DH
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, RF
5: Seager, 3B
6: Morrison, 1B
7: Ackley, CF
8: Taylor, SS
9: Sucre, C


24 Responses to “Game 36, Red Sox at Mariners”

  1. G-Man on May 16th, 2015 6:24 pm

    Miller batting second and DHing? What the ….. HOME RUN – Lloyd, you’re a genius!

  2. Kazinski on May 16th, 2015 6:32 pm

    Even before today’s HR Miller has a .313/.450/.750 when he’s DHing. Yeah, I know he’s not going to keep it up, but at least it doesn’t look like not playing the field is affecting his offense in a bad way.

  3. Grayfox3d on May 16th, 2015 6:58 pm

    Looks like Brad Miller’s the only one who showed up with out a hole in his bat!

  4. Grayfox3d on May 16th, 2015 7:15 pm

    Dear Chris Taylor, At least look like you know what your doing or trying to do when you step up to the plate, Swinging at the first pitch in a RISP situation is not always the best course of action.

  5. ensignofcommand on May 16th, 2015 7:30 pm

    This Felix guy is pretty good.

  6. ensignofcommand on May 16th, 2015 7:43 pm

    Give him a shot in CF already. Best athlete on the team and a career .334/.409/.516/.925 minor league hitter with ridiculous upside. That’s what, his fourth of fifth multi-HR game?

  7. Grayfox3d on May 16th, 2015 7:47 pm

    I think you may have jinxed him a bit there Ensign…

  8. Woodcutta on May 16th, 2015 7:51 pm

    So we get to see a gimpy Felix walk batters. Woohoo!

  9. ensignofcommand on May 16th, 2015 7:53 pm

    I’ll sacrifice a roast chicken as recompense.

  10. WTF_Ms on May 16th, 2015 9:05 pm

    I meant to say, Dustin “swings at a ball” Ackley. either way, I wish the Offense would show up at the same time as Defense.

  11. MrZDevotee on May 16th, 2015 11:21 pm

    Dear Baseball Gods…

    Please let us have more than just 1 good year of Robbie Cano at the plate. We know he’s gonna get older the next 9 years, sure, and we’ve been through that with Ichiro, so we understand, but a couple more years of consistently good batting would sure be fun to watch!

    The Mariners’ Fans

  12. Eastside Crank on May 17th, 2015 10:11 am

    I would be delighted if Cano aged as well as Ichiro did. Ichiro’s hitting fell off during the “swing for the fences” era and he was not the only one who saw his hitting tank. Cano has been so consistently good that I would be willing to wait another year before getting too distressed. What makes this so bad is that Cruz is hitting beyond expectations and the team still has a worse record than last year.

  13. Westside guy on May 17th, 2015 11:15 am

    I went to FanGraphs to gather evidence in support of Eastside’s statement because I largely agreed with it. But now I’m not as sure.

    I will say I still expect Cano to rebound. However the thing I hadn’t fully realized about Cano is how much his power fell off last year – and this year’s performance is following last year’s.

    It almost makes me wonder if there’s something physically wrong… but that should’ve been dealt with in the off-season.

  14. Woodcutta on May 17th, 2015 12:40 pm

    Not being able to take advantage of the short porch in RF at Yankee Stadium might have played more into Cano hitting less HRs last year and he only had 4 less doubles (in 26 less PA). If he can repeat last year’s numbers for a few years I’m sure Mariner’s fans will be happy.

  15. Westside guy on May 17th, 2015 1:08 pm

    His ISO from the past four years is 231, .238, .202, and finally .139 last season. This year so far he’s at .103.

  16. Westside guy on May 17th, 2015 1:36 pm

    … but I agree he should age more gracefully than the likes of Fielder, Hamilton, etc. I just don’t think expecting to see even last year’s numbers for the next few years is entirely realistic.

  17. groundzero55 on May 17th, 2015 5:46 pm

    When are we going to give Guti another try? He’s hitting .324 in Tacoma, the guy is obviously just waiting in the wings, but for what? Ackley is painful to watch hitting – and it seems like whenever he lucks into a ball it buys him an entire month of whiffing.

  18. Westside guy on May 17th, 2015 8:41 pm

    Is Guti playing again? Last I heard he’d missed a week or so with an injury.

  19. LongDistance on May 17th, 2015 10:31 pm

    I never thought I’d say this, but Guti up and Dustin down to Tacoma to contemplate … something, I’d be interested in seeing.

  20. LongDistance on May 18th, 2015 1:11 am

    No, I take it back. Things aren’t that bad. And I’m expecting good things in Bawlamor.

  21. Westside guy on May 18th, 2015 8:10 am

    Yeah, Guti hasn’t played since the 8th.

  22. groundzero55 on May 18th, 2015 3:57 pm

    When he comes back it’s certainly something I wouldn’t mind seeing. It’s to the point where I’d much rather see Ruggiano at the plate.

  23. Westside guy on May 18th, 2015 6:36 pm

    I agree with you. I’d like to see Guti brought up once he’s back. However I don’t see Z doing it unless the team is completely out of it.

  24. LongDistance on May 19th, 2015 12:17 pm

    Since there’s no game thread I’ll just say this. Gonzalez has had a weird effect on the M’s big lumber, when he’s on. But he’s that rare thing: a pitcher Ackley seems able to handle either way. There aren’t many games I’d pay to watch in Baltimore this year, but given the unknowns which could break forth, this would be one.

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