Game 82, Mariners at Athletics

marc w · July 5, 2015 at 12:36 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

JA Happ vs. Chris Bassitt, 1:05pm

Yesterday marked the half-way point of the season. Yesterday marked the M’s largest deficit in the West, as they fell 10 games behind Houston. Yesterday marked the M’s 9th shutout loss. The M’s are shut down by Chris Archer, sure, but the M’s democratize the shut-out. They’ve been shut out by the since-demoted Brett Oberholtzer, by Ryan Vogelsong, by a group of Rays relievers, by Kendall Graveman. We look at their tendencies, and beyond a tendency to make a ton of outs, there’s not much rhyme or reason to it. They’re not a good offense, and haven’t been for many years, but the way this team seems to look so overmatched is concerning – concerning above and beyond all of the losses and squandered opportunities and failed promise. Baseball can do this – it makes even good offenses look inept, and often the beneficiary is some AAAA non-entity. This is the unpredictable nature of sport and baseball that makes each game worth watching. But with the M’s, it’s more like standard operating precedure, and the only thing that’s unknown is when it’s going to happen next. The M’s were a good team of sorts last year, and they got shut out 19 times – far more than they did when they were well and truly abysmal in 2010-11. They’re at 9 half-way through the year – they’re on pace to challenge last year’s mark and it feels like they’ll blow past the 2010-11 shutout totals in a week or so. The M’s have worked for *years* to fix the problem they and every fan knows they have, and the result is a team that could very easily get shut out today by a pitcher I’ve barely heard of.

Chris Bassitt is starting because Sonny Gray was laid low by a stomach virus this week. He’s made one start on the year – he was demoted after struggling in the A’s bullpen early on (he faced the M’s in fact on May 9th). He came to Oakland from the White Sox org as part of the Jeff Samardzija trade, and he seems to have improved – his velocity’s up a tick from where it was in his brief look in 2014, and he was excellent at AAA Nashville. But there are still some warning signs. He had issues with walks in the White Sox org, and he’s given up 12 free passes (9 walks, 3 HBPs) to just 11 Ks in 15+ innings this year. He’s got a good looking sinker – it’s depressingly similar to Kendall Graveman’s in shape), but he’s been a fly-ball pitcher. He’s working on a change, but doesn’t throw it much, and thus he doesn’t have much to throw against lefties. As a result, his command problems are magnified against lefties. The M’s have lefties. They’ve occasionally been good against sinkers. But at this point, I’m not sure it matters.

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

Brett Oberholtzer didn’t find the Rainiers as easy as he did the M’s, but he and Fresno still crushed the Rainiers 10-3. Jesus Montero hit his 14 HR, but Sam Gaviglio couldn’t get the final out of the 6th inning, and that turned a 3-2 lead into an 8-3 deficit. Vidal Nuno makes his Rainiers debut today, as he’ll start opposite lefthander Luis Cruz.

Jackson lost to Mississippi 4-2. All of the M-Braves runs scored in the 7th; starter Jimmy gilheeney was excellent through 6 1/3, but Scott DeCecco was tagged for 3 runs in 1/3 of an inning. Jordy Lara went 3-3 with a triple in the loss. Today, Anthony Fernandez makes his 3rd start of the year as he continues his comeback from TJ surgery.

Stockton edged Bakersfield 2-1. Dylan Unsworth was the hard-luck loser, and indie-league pick-up Kyle Schepel pitched two scoreless in relief. Schepel had a couple of seriously ugly outings early on with the Blaze, but is intriguing as he can be given that he’s a single-A reliever with an ERA in double digits. He sits in the mid 90s, and while the Blaze have some solid relievers, he could be one to watch if he improves his consistency.

Kane County topped Clinton 6-3, as Jefferson Medina gave up 5 runs in 6 IP. 1B Pat Leyland, a recent pick-up from the Detroit org, had three hits for the L-Kings. Zack Littell starts today against the German Markus Solbach.

Hillsboro beat Everett 8-7 to complete the organizational sweep. What a year. Hillsboro scored 3 runs off of Kyle Wilcox in the 9th to tie the game, then won it in the 10th. Alex Jackson hit 2 doubles and a single for the AquaSox. Jose Santiago starts for Everett tonight.


19 Responses to “Game 82, Mariners at Athletics”

  1. Westside guy on July 5th, 2015 12:44 pm

    James Jones is leading off.

    James Freakin’ Jones is LEADING OFF.

    You know why Seager is batting second? It’s because Lloyd wants to get more plate appearances to guys “who give good at-bats”. And yet, in the one spot that gets more plate appearances than any other, he puts James Jones.

    Yeah right there I can see why people think Lloyd is good at managing.

  2. Grayfox3d on July 5th, 2015 1:09 pm

    Did Lloyd make the line ups today? I know he’s gone for a few days following the death of his sister. As much we are frustrated with this team and Lloyd I hope that all is well for him and I know how much it hurts to lose a family member.

  3. Westside guy on July 5th, 2015 1:49 pm

    As I understand it, he’s leaving the team after today’s game.

    In any case he did set the lineup – I was quoting him regarding why Seager is batting second.

    And yes, all of this pales in comparison to the fact that he just lost his younger sister. I can only imagine how much that hurts.

  4. Grayfox3d on July 5th, 2015 1:58 pm

    What really sucks with this team is that giving up that 1 home run means we’re probably going to lose this game at this point.

  5. mrakbaseball on July 5th, 2015 2:28 pm

    We can rest assured now that Mark Langston will remain the Mariners rookie pitcher upon which all others are judged.

  6. eddieranch on July 5th, 2015 2:33 pm

    Really interesting(okay interesting is a stretch the way Ms are playing) to watch these games down in the Bay Area with Oakland TV announcers. At least 25% of their banter is shock/disbelief that the Mariners “talented” roster has been so consistently unable to score runs this year, and that the team has had just the one win streak over 3 games(4). Good to know that we astound even opposing sucky team’s analysts.

  7. LongDistance on July 5th, 2015 2:34 pm

    This is it, Seth.

  8. Woodcutta on July 5th, 2015 2:36 pm

    So Cano is left in the game when he is obviously hobbled. Oh, and he didn’t score on a double by Cruz. GG Lloyd.

  9. Section329 on July 5th, 2015 2:40 pm

    Yeah Seth, the anti-mariner type!

  10. LongDistance on July 5th, 2015 2:43 pm

    It’s *on* day. So they actually look like they can do things. If only they could find a way to reel back that horrible stretch of 9 losses in 11 games. Then we could convince ourselves they are indeed talented. Of course, we’d also have to overlook how, before the meltdown, there were only three days they were ever at a real world .500, and each time, it only lasted for one game.

  11. msfanmike on July 5th, 2015 3:11 pm

    Zunino is just the worst. It’s hard to fail 84% of the time, but he somehow finds a way to keep getting it done.

  12. LongDistance on July 5th, 2015 3:42 pm

    So much for setting up Dustin’s sizzling, smoking, red hot bat. Nice try, Lloyd.

  13. Westside guy on July 5th, 2015 3:44 pm

    It’s funny how the Mariners will defensively sub for Smith, but won’t sub for the worst corner outfielder in baseball when he’s out there.

  14. Westside guy on July 5th, 2015 3:50 pm

    I haven’t been paying enough attention recently, apparently – when did Rodney become the closer again?

  15. Westside guy on July 5th, 2015 3:56 pm


  16. LongDistance on July 5th, 2015 3:57 pm

    Rodney was just brought in to ensure the A’s would feel especially bad about losing by a point. Lloyd’s a vengeful guy.

  17. Grayfox3d on July 5th, 2015 4:52 pm

    I just realized in the game notes JA Happ is listed as the starter, 2nd game in 3 days! lol.

    But Mike is looking good so far, just need to make sure he can adapt to hitters as they adapt to him.

  18. Don Money on July 5th, 2015 11:07 pm

    Perfect start for a remarkable second half of the season! Hang on, boys and girls, the excitement starts now! (Hey, if the Brew Crew can win 8 in a row, anything can happen!)

  19. LongDistance on July 6th, 2015 6:45 am

    Top 4 of the order went 2 for 15.

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