Game 88, Athletics at Mariners

July 7, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 9 Comments 

James Paxton vs. Sean Manaea, 7:10pm

A little while ago, when the M’s made a run and were safely above .500 for a bit, I mentioned that it felt like the M’s were more relevant – more a part of the conversation in Seattle and about sports – than they’d been in some time. And while it shouldn’t be (of course sports radio talks about baseball during baseball season), it felt remarkable. The narrative about the team has always been fatalistic, and I realize I’m a serial offender on that charge. Put that together with the region’s collective passion for the Seahawks and you get a team that runs in the background a bit. For a while, they were out front. And then they fell on their faces.

It’s been rough, but the odd thing is that they’re still a part of the conversation. For whatever reason – the drama of an injury wracked, volatile season, maybe, or the King’s struggles, or Ben Gamel’s ascent – there’s still a lot to talk about. Much of it is bad! The M’s probably won’t/can’t sell off major pieces if they continue to stink, and don’t really have enough to grab help at the deadline, so there’s no savior on the horizon. But the team’s still seems intriguing, even when their pitching staff’s been a nightmare. That may be giving them too much credit; we’re all so beaten down by the 2010-2012 M’s that losing different feels exciting or novel. But the team’s getting more than they could’ve hoped for from Segura/Gamel/Haniger – players who’ll be a part of this org for many years. There’s something to build on, though we still don’t exactly know what or how they’ll do so.

The M’s face lefty Sean Manaea today, the former top prospect who’s become a reasonable, better-than-average SP for the go-nowhere Athletics. He’s seen his K rate increase considerably, approaching the levels he had in the minors. While he’s still not a great starter, he’s developing into a very interesting one. With a low-3/4, whip-like motion, he gets a ton of armside run and some sink on his fastball, which comes in at 92-93. His best pitch going back to his days at Indiana State and his jaw-dropping Cape Cod League performance is his slider, a gyro-spinning pitch at a slurve-like 80 MPH. The problem is that he faces line-ups stacked with righties, and he’s always shown huge platoon splits, in large part because of his stuff: tailing FB/SL combo is nearly always a recipe for high platoon splits. So, he’s got a change-up. He essentially has to, and with a solid amount of drop, it’s now a decent pitch. Clearly his third best, but it’s not an embarrassment.

1: Segura, SS
2: Valencia, 1B
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Haniger, RF
6: Seager, 3B
7: Heredia, CF
8: Gamel, LF
9: Zunino, C
SP: Paxton

Haniger ahead of Seager makes sense given who’s on the hill here. And while Danny Valencia hasn’t been all that much more productive vs. lefties this year, he’s got an even K:BB ratio against them; he works the count and draws walks against lefties, which makes his position in the order understandable.

Today’s minor roster move: Emilio Pagan’s been recalled, with Sam Gaviglio optioned to Tacoma, as the M’s don’t need a 5th starter with the All-Star break looming.

Speaking of the All-Star Game, congrats to Robbie Cano, who was named to the AL team for the 8th time as an injury replacement for Starlin Castro.

Today’s minor league pitching probables include Ljay Newsome, Anthony Misiewicz, Pablo Lopez, and Randy Bell. Tacoma’s going to have a bullpen day today, as Rob Whalen’s back on the disabled list.
Dan Altavilla yielded a crushing 2-out, 3R HR in Reno’s 9-7 win yesterday. In better news, Nick Neidert delivered the pitching performance of the day, tossing 7 shutout IP with 6 Ks in Modesto’s 3-0 win over Visalia. Dylan Unsworth went 7 1/3 with 2 runs allowed in an Arkansas win. Tough call on best hitting line; guess we’ll go with Tacoma’s Leonys Martin, who doubled and tripled in 5 PAs.

Game 87, Athletics at Mariners

July 6, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 1 Comment 

Sam Gaviglio vs. Paul Blackburn, 7:10pm

Recently, ex-LL and new M’s blog writer Nathan Bishop posted this optimistic piece regarding the M’s new-look outfield. We kind of take it for granted now, but let’s remember – the current alignment of Heredia/Gamel in LF, Dyson/Heredia in CF, and Haniger/Gamel in RF is a new one. This season started with Leonys Martin in CF, Dyson in LF, Haniger in RF, and Ben Gamel in Tacoma. Nathan talks about their impressive fWAR, especially given that all save Dyson are young players, and can reasonably be expected to get even better. One of the key reasons for this – their high fWAR and all of that – is that the group, as a whole, is incredibly good defensively. I’ve made a few throwaway references to that fact as the year’s gone on, and contrasted it with where we were in April, when for all of their defensive chops, the M’s outfield had a hell of a time turning fly balls into outs. What’s happened since then is pretty jaw-dropping, as the M’s defensive efficiency has increased at an incredible rate and here we are in July with the M’s in a dead heat for first place in team DER. They’re not the best OF by DER, but they’re up there, and that’s impressive given how much more ground they have to cover than, say, the Yankees’ OFs. The infield, too, has made shocking progress since being an anchor on the team’s DER, so this may be a story about positioning changing as the club’s coaches got more information. It could also have something to do with the gap between Jarrod Dyson and Leonys Martin. It could be a lot of things, but the FO set out to improve their OF defense, and it looks like they have.

If there’s such a thing as the anti-Mariners OF, it plays for Oakland. With corner OFs like Khris Davis, Mark Canha, Jaff Decker, and Matt Joyce, the A’s have a combination of waiver-wire guys and platoon guys along with some high-power, low- uh, movement guys. Davis has been the biggest offender, which makes sense as he’s played the most and given the fact that he has the OF armstrength of your average 2nd grader. All told, they’ve given away 36 runs compared to the average OF, and 45 worse than the M’s. We’ve all been focused on Marcus Semien and the A’s poor IF defense, and we missed the, according to these stats, more important story.

Paul Blackburn was the back-of-the-rotation prospect the M’s got along with Dan Vogelbach in the Mike Montgomery trade. The M’s flipped him to Oakland when it became clear that the A’s had no interest in keeping him around. At the time, I thought it was more of a salary dump than a trade, but to their credit, the A’s have Blackburn in the big leagues now. With the M’s, he was a command and control righty whose primary skill was keeping the ball on the ground. He made up for a lack of Ks with a lack of HRs, and while he was never a dominant pitcher, he kept his team in the game. His ERA/FIP were consistently between 3 and 4. That’s nice and gives you some degree of hope that he wouldn’t embarrass a big league team, but there was clearly no standout skill there. I think Andrew Moore, another righty without a big fastball who relied on command, had to overcome the belief that he was *just* a command pitcher who’d be overmatched in the bigs, and he’s struck out a ton more batters, including in the high minors, than Blackburn.

Especially in this day and age, the key’s going to be avoiding HRs. A GB% rate near 50% helps, sure, but there’s some evidence that the fly balls hit off of ground ball pitchers are more damaging; they give up fewer flies, but worse flies, as each one is more likely to be a mistake. He was great at limiting HRs in the minors, and he didn’t give one up in his MLB debut, but it’s something to watch for with him. Sam Gaviglio’s projected HR rate is a bit higher than Blackburn’s, but the two are fairly similar. Both are righties without a ton of velo, who rely on control and sinking stuff to keep hitters off balance. Both were not prospects and seen as 5th-starters by the very few who saw them as MLB-material in the first place. Gaviglio’s kept his team in it, but he’s been seriously battered by homers. We’ll see if Blackburn shares that problem. I’m sure he’d kill for Gaviglio’s results through his first 50 big league innings.

1: Segura, SS
2: Gamel, LF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Seager, 3B
6: Valencia, 1B
7: Haniger, RF
8: Dyson, CF
9: Zunino, C
SP: Gaviglio

Game 86, Royals at Mariners – Jason Vargas Is Doing What Now?

July 5, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 9 Comments 

Ariel Miranda vs. Jason Vargas, 7:10pm

Baseball fans love an underdog story. Sure, we love Noah Syndergaard’s 92mph sliders and we love Aaron Judge moonshots, but every year the out-of-nowhere stories capture our attention, and highlight just how little we know about this game. Jake Arrieta going from busted prospect to ace (and then back to something more run-of-the-mill) seemingly overnight. RA Dickey going from medical freak, to AAA depth, to knuckleballing Rule 5 guy to Cy Young winner. Collin McHugh or Dallas Keuchel going from punching bags to excellent starters, and, in Keuchel’s case, an elite, ace-level guy. Even well-known guys who have a clearly, unambiguously lucky year, it’s cool, and even fans of other teams can tip their caps: Phil Hughes’ insane 2014, maybe, or Kyle Hendricks’ 2016. Fangraphs takes a lot of flack for the formulaic, “Is X sustainable? Probably not,” articles, and part of the reason is that “Is X sustainable?” isn’t a question many are asking. They’re saying, “Isn’t this fun?”

Well, most of them. There’s a dark side of all of this, “Isn’t that nice for Jason Vargas,” who is currently 2nd in BBREF’s version of WAR and is leading the AL in ERA by a mile. Even by Fangraphs’ WAR, which ignores Vargas’ success in stranding runners, he’s in the top 20. The top of leaderboards isn’t where one looks for Jason Vargases (Vargii?). We all know Jason Vargas. Vargas was a perfectly reasonable, effective, generally durable middle-of-the-rotation starter with Seattle for a few years, and has been one for Anaheim and then Kansas City in the years since. This is not a Jake Arrieta story; he was never really a prospect, thanks to the fact that he’s never sat at 90 MPH. He hasn’t really “broken out” as he’s not striking out a ton more batters, or become a Keuchel-level ground ball guy. He’s just stranding runners and avoiding home runs despite giving up fly balls like they’re going out of style (they are most assuredly NOT going out of style). He’s just the same old Vargas, now throwing 1-2 MPH *slower* than he did in Seattle, and he’s leading the AL in ERA. It’s great, right? No, it’s not.

For every out-of-nowhere, or even fluky-great, season, there’s the equal and opposite. A beloved star falling back to the pack, or being mauled by it. For every Logan Morrison hitting bombs everywhere in Tampa, there’s the quiet, there’s Evan Longoria. For every Ben Gamel, there’s a Kyle Seager. And for Jason Vargas, there’s Felix. To state the obvious, Jason Vargas’ success hasn’t come at Felix’s expense. At least, I can’t prove that it has (I’m watching you, Jason). But the juxtaposition of Felix’s not-so-slow decline and Vargas’ look-what-I-found year rankles me for completely irrational reasons. That’s what being a fan is, I guess. We love a player and that means rooting against regression, age-related decline, injury, bad luck, and all manner of opponents that are $^&*ing invincible. The game chews up players like Felix, publicly, in front of their own themed cheering sections, and then has the cheek to elevate some completely average player to the upper tiers of the game. My mind has drawn a bizarre line between the two, and while that’s kind of indefensible logically, the two ARE related, albeit tangentially. You can’t crack a top 10 without someone else dropping out of it.

Here we were concerned about elbowing the Angels out of the Wild Card race, and we kind of missed the fact that Kansas City’s been, well, good, after taking the first month-6 weeks of the season off. The Royals now have a 3 game lead over the M’s in the WC race, and find themselves tied for 2nd in the odd AL Central. Like with the Twins, I look at the club and don’t see a good team, but there they are, 3 games up on the M’s after beating them in 2 straight with the back end of their rotation. As with Vargas himself, I do not find this team, this macro-Vargas story, very entertaining. I still *do* find the M’s entertaining, though the more entertaining they are, the more it raises expectations, and if you’ve been with us for a while, you know what the M’s do to high expectations.

1: Segura, SS
2: Valenica, 1B
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Gamel, LF
6: Haniger, RF
7: Zunino, C
8: Dyson, CF
9: Motter, 3B
SP: Miranda

Tyler O’Neill hit 2 opposite-field HRs in Reno last night in Tacoma’s 12-4 romp over the Aces to run away with the win for best batting line of the night last night. Not a banner night in the system for pitching, but I’ll go with Justin DeFratus’ start for Arkansas – he went 6 IP, giving up 2 earned runs in a loss to Corpus Christi. CC Hooks starter Framber Valdez held the Travs in check, with 9 Ks and 1 R allowed in 6 IP; the Astros may have another decent pitching prospect. Greeeaaat. He didn’t make the Astros’ top 30 list, but now has 85 Ks in 73 1/3 IP this year between hi-A and AA.

Game 85, Royals at Mariners

July 4, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 2 Comments 

Felix Hernandez vs. Danny Duffy, 3:40pm

Happy Felix Day and Happy Independence Day. I love double holidays.

King Felix and the M’s take on Danny Duffy, the Royals exciting but injury prone starter, a sort of midwestern James Paxton. Duffy first came up back in 2011, and is still looking for his first 200 IP (or 180 IP) season. He came close last year, in a breakout season that saw him post 2.8 fWAR and earn a big 5-year contract extension this off-season. He’s pitched decently this year, but he’s missed over a month with an oblique injury; this’ll be his first start since May 28th.

Duffy’s got good velo for a lefty, reaching 94 pretty routinely, and has lots of spin on his rising fastball, and running change-up. He uses a slider at 84 as his putaway pitch; the curveball that he came up with is now rarely seen. He’s got pretty normal platoon splits, and as such, he’s seen heavily right-handed line-ups. Today figures to be more of the same. Let’s hope the M’s can figure him out a bit more than Ian Kennedy, whose high 91 MPH fastballs seemed to flummox the M’s (though Jarrod Dyson said he had a deceptive delivery).

Andrew Moore overcame some early shakiness to pitch 8 innings in yesterday’s loss. He’s still averaging 91+, and he’s still not walked anyone, but he left a few too many pitches in the heart of the zone. His command’s better than that, and it’s interesting to see that he still got plenty of outs in the heart of the zone, but he’s going to want to stick to the edges as best he can. He gave up a HR on his slider, and seemed to be using his curve more. That hook was supposed to be a work in progress, and his 4th-best pitch, but it’s been the most successful through two games.

Ben Gamel’s now 0 for his last 12. Is he seeing fewer FBs? Eh, kind of – his overall FB% has dropped from about 58% to 56%, so that’s not a huge shift yet. The share of pitches that end a plate appearance is identical, too. It’s predictable/boring, but this is probably just a bit of BABIP luck evening out. The poor guy’s seen his BABIP tumble from .471 waaay down to .432.

1: Segura, SS
2: Valencia, 1B
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Seager, 3B
6: Haniger, RF
7: Heredia, CF
8: Ruiz, C
9: Motter, LF
SP: El Rey

Good to see Nellie Cruz back in the line-up.

Casey Lawrence hurled a CG shutout for Tacoma in their big July 3rd game against Albuquerque. Lindsey Caughel went 6 scoreless in Arkansas’ shutout win, but Lawrence’s 9 IP gives him the nod. Tuffy Gosewisch was the hitting star of the day, with a HR and 5 RBIs. Brayan Hernandez and two other AquaSox homered as well, and Greifer Andrade hit 2 2Bs, continuing to show that he needs a new challenge soon.

Game 84, Royals at Mariners

July 3, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 1 Comment 

Andrew Moore vs. Ian Kennedy, 7:10pm

This has always been one of my favorite days on the baseball calendar, as Tacoma always had its big fireworks show on the 3rd. It was always the biggest game of the year, and when we didn’t go (which was most of the time), I’d climb on my roof and try to see the fireworks to the south. Safeco’s now doing a big fireworks show on the 3rd as well, and from all reports, they do a great job. In any event, if you want to take in a ball game and see some fireworks, you’ve now got a few options locally.

Andrew Moore’s back up to make his second big league start. Honestly couldn’t have gone much better in his first game, so you have to think he can approach this game with some confidence. His opponents, the Royals, have been a terrible team at the plate, but of course that’s been true for a long time and it never seemed to slow them down. The heart of their order’s actually better than it’s been in a while thanks to a decent season from Eric Hosmer, and Lorenzo Cain’s still great, but awful seasons from Alex Gordon and Alcides Escobar saps the ability of the line-up to string hits together. Escobar’s always been bad, but Gordon’s face-plant is pretty remarkable for someone who hasn’t suffered some freak injury. He’s had nearly 300 PAs this year and both his OBP AND SLG% are under .300.

Ian Kennedy was always a curious free agent pick-up by KC, but he turned in a surprisingly decent year last year. Home run issues made him expendable in San Diego, and – not surprisingly – he gave up a ton for the Royals last year in the Year of the Home Run. Still, an insane strand rate and his second-best season BABIP led him to a sub-4 ERA. FIP was suspicious, but he helped a Royals team that desperately needed some stability in their rotation. So who was right, the ERA or the FIP? To the surprise of no one, FIP seems to have won this hypothetical battle. Kennedy’s K% is down, his walk and HR rates are up, and now not even a .201 BABIP can save his season. He’s probably one of those guys who’s always going to be a bit better than his FIP, but that’s exceedingly faint praise.

He’s been remarkably even platoon-wise, with an equivalent K rate and too many HRs against both. Lefties figure to have the advantage, but that’s not because Kennedy’s a righty-killer. He throws a rising 4-seam fastball at 92-93, a cutter, a curve and a change-up.

Andrew Moore averaged 91.4 MPH on his arrow-straight, rising four-seamer in his first start. He struggled to miss bats, but was around the strike zone and yielded tons of fly ball and elevated contact. That’s his game plan and all, but despite the great results, he gave up a lot of hard-hit balls. I’d love to see him get some more pop-ups and mishits against a poor offensive club.

1: Segura, SS
2: Gamel, LF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Haniger, RF
5: Seager, 3B
6: Valencia, 1B
7: Dyson, CF
8: Zunino, C
9: Powell, DH
SP: Moore

Casey Lawrence starts for Tacoma tonight. Game’s at 7, with the first pitch at 7:20. Other starters in the system include Lindsey Caughel, Anthony Misiewicz, Danny Garcia, and Andres Torres. Tyler Herb had the start of the night yesterday. Best batting line (tough call, as two teams were shut out) will go to Leonys Martin, who had 3 hits including a double.

Game 83, Mariners at Angels + Happy J2 Day

July 2, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 16 Comments 

James Paxton vs. Jesse Chavez, 12:37pm

After one of the most dispiriting losses of the year – getting shutout by a guy who came in with a well below-replacement-level WAR – the M’s look to right the ship against well-traveled Jesse Chavez and the Angels. James Paxton starts, which is generally a good sign.

The biggest news of the day has nothing to do with the game, though, nor to the latest minor roster moves (welcome back Boog Powell!). Instead, July 2nd is the big day in which teams sign the top international free agent teenagers, largely from Venezuela and the Dominican Republic. Essentially, teams can sign players who are 16 or above. These rules came into place after Adrian Beltre signed with the Dodgers at 15, but things had been a bit…uh, unregulated for a while. The Jays signed a 13 year old in the 80s, for example, and the entire system seems kind of gross the closer you look at it. Coaches taking young kids, training them up, and teams perhaps making side deals and in general trying to drive their signing bonuses down.

The M’s have experienced the entire range of J2-inspired emotions. One of the trainers they worked with on some of the biggest signings at the tail end of Bob Engle’s reign as international directors was implicated in a sex abuse case involving M’s prospects. Years before all of that, of course, the M’s made a big move into scouting Venezuela, turning up the likes of Felix Hernandez. The M’s had been one of the most active teams in that country, but shuttered their academy there amidst concerns about the political situation there.

J2 is a big deal because the signings of an entire cohort of players are announced on the same day. Of course, that doesn’t mean that the day’s like the amateur draft. Instead, it’s just the day on which teams announce signings that are, for the most part, already drawn up. That seems to get around the whole “you can’t sign 15 year olds” but there you have it. De jure rather than de facto laws are what we have to work with. One of the M’s biggest recent signings, SS Christopher Torres, fell to them after he arranged a deal with the Yankees, only to have the Yankees renege on the deal (according to Torres and his trainer) after he gained weight.

The M’s have not been major players in the international/Caribbean market for a while; they’ve made a handful of high-dollar signings (like Everett CF Brayan Hernandez), but they haven’t gone for one of the top 2-3 players in a while, and we haven’t seen the M’s blow past their bonus pool (J2 has team-by-team bonus limits, like the amateur draft) the way so many teams have done. Indeed, Jerry Dipoto hadn’t been too active in this field even as GM of the Angels. The Angels had an international scouting director was the subject of an MLB investigation into “bonus skimming” where a team pays an inflated bonus to a trainer and then receives a kickback from the trainer. That was well before Dipoto’s time, but pretty much the only big international signing the club made while Dipoto was at the helm was of Cuban 2B Roberto Baldoquin for $8 million, quite a high bonus at the time – though to be fair, Baldoquin was 20 at the time, and not a wiry 16 year old. That move has yet to pay dividends, as Baldoquin immediately put up a 52 wRC+ in the hitter-friendly Cal League, and then somehow got worse in 2016. He’s currently all the way back in the Midwest League. Given that, it’s perhaps not a surprise that Dipoto hasn’t been fighting with the Rays/Yankees/Red Sox/White Sox for top talent.

That’s changed a bit this year. The M’s have signed one of the top-5 ranked players, Dominican OF Julio Rodriguez, for about $1.75 million. They’ve also signed Venezuelan SS Juan Querecuto for a bonus exceeding $1 million. Both players are in the top J2 lists; BaseballAmerica has them ranked 6th and 21st, respectively. Chris Crawford had Rodriguez 5th, and says of Querecuto: “Mariners also got Juan Querecuto today, a shortstop with a chance for average offensive tools and a very strong throwing arm.”

Ok, ok, back to the major leagues for a bit: today’s match-up sees the M’s offense face off with yet another Angels pitcher whose HR troubles have him firmly below replacement level by FIP. Like Ricky Nolasco, he’s been better at home, though unlike Nolasco, he’s actually been decent in Orange County. He’s got strangely reversed platoon splits this year. He’s thrown his four-seamer a lot more with the Halos than he did with the A’s, but his velocity’s down noticeably this year.

1: Segura, SS
2: Gamel, LF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Haniger, RF
5: Seager, 3B
6: Valencia, 1B
7: Heredia, CF
8: Zunino, C
9: Powell, DH
SP: Paxton

As you can see, Boog Powell’s back, as Nelson Cruz sits after injuring his knee on that slide into 2nd base last night. Max Povse’s been optioned to Tacoma to make room.

Game 82, Mariners at Angels

July 1, 2017 · Filed Under Mariners · 5 Comments 

Sam Gaviglio vs. Ricky Nolasco, 7:07pm

The Angels have, for years, actively courted fly ball pitchers with the idea that their home park will allow fly ballers to run low BABIPs and yet not allow too many home runs. As I mentioned the last time the M’s faced Ricky Nolasco, this was essentially Jerry Dipoto’s doing, and he talked a lot this spring about doing the same thing in Seattle – hence the trade for Drew Smyly, for example. The Angels may be moving away from that single-minded focus on high FB% pitchers, if only because they spent a lot in talent to acquire Andrelton Simmons, and he can’t really DO anything about balls flying over his head.

I bring this up because the Angels are really the third team we’ve talked about who’s pitted their HR-suppressing park up against baseball’s HR spike and lost. Safeco Field saw the most HRs hit in all of baseball last year, a fact that I still can’t quite believe is true. We talked about it when the M’s visited Minnesota as well, and I should’ve made a bigger deal of it when the M’s went to Detroit. After yesterday’s game, Angels stadium’s allowing 2.65 dingers per game, above the league average. They’ve still got some fly ball pitchers – like Nolasco – but no park is safe anymore. Sure, Angels stadium may still be slightly less HR-friendly than some other park (Texas, Houston, whatever), but the point is that the strategy of designing a staff around low HR:FB ratios now looks absurd.

How absurd? Nolasco’s never really been great at limiting HRs. He’s given up 1.14 per 9 IP, which is a tiny bit above average. Last year, he tossed just shy of 200 IP and gave up 26 HRs, good for a rate of 1.18/9. This year, he’s pitched about 90 IP, and he’s already yielded 23 dingers. That rate is now 2.28. He’s been worse on the road, sure, but his HR/9 starts with a 2 at home, too. He pitched pretty well down the stretch for Anaheim last year, but whatever that was, it hasn’t carried over into 2017.

Sam Gaviglio’s own HR/9 is essentially 2, so he’s got his own problems to worry about. He also doesn’t miss as many bats as Nolasco, but a low walk rate and the advantage of being something of an unknown may be working to his advantage. Let’s hope he keeps at it today, as the M’s could really use a win here to take a road series from a key wild card rival.

1: Segura, SS
2: Gamel, LF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Seager, 3B
6: Valencia, 1B
7: Haniger, RF
8: Dyson, CF
9: Ruiz, C
SP: Gaviglio

Happy Canada Day! Tyler O’Neill started the celebrations a bit early by hitting another HR last night, his 2nd in 2 games. Let’s hope he keeps it up today, as Chase De Jong and the M’s host Albuquerque. Other starters in the system include Robert Dugger, Michael Suarez, Dylan Unsworth, and the M’s big SP prospect, Nick Neidert.

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