Game 112, Mariners at Royals – Kingless Again

marc w · August 5, 2017 at 2:33 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Marco Gonzales vs. Danny Duffy, 4:15pm

It wasn’t easy, but the M’s won yesterday’s must-win game. That should’ve given them a bit of a boost heading into tonight’s game, but instead the M’s have more injury problems to deal with. The M’s placed Felix Hernandez on the 10-day DL today with biceps tendinitis, and they’ve called up lefty Marco Gonzales to make tonight’s start.

Jerry Dipoto has talked about Gonzales being an undervalued arm due to his injury history and apparently improved stuff since coming back from TJ rehab. Those apparent improvements may be real, but they’ve been stubbornly slow to reveal themselves to hitters, as Gonzales got blasted in his 1 start for St Louis, and has been so-so in two starts for Tacoma. He had a nice ERA for Memphis, but his FIP was above 4.

Gonzales was a top prospect a few years ago, and may become a solid #4, which is not a slam on his ability at all. The problem, as you’re all probably sick of hearing me say, is that the M’s haven’t really shown a lot of aptitude in getting as much production as they can for pitchers like him. Andrew Moore and Sam Gaviglio had HR problems plague their big league tenure, Christian Bergman was up and down (but mostly down), and Dillon Overton/Chase de Jong were completely overwhelmed. Gonzales has better stuff than most of this list (with the exception of Moore), but the same questions remain: can his change-up become a weapon at this level and neutralize righties? Can he avoid HRs?

There are some positives here: the park suppresses HRs, and the Royals are a bad line-up vs. lefties. On the other side of the ledger, the M’s face Danny Duffy, the ace of the Royals staff. The lefty is somewhat Paxtonesque in that his undeniable talent is often obscured by disabled list stints. Fresh off a contract extension, Duffy’s been mostly healthy (he’s only missed a month thus far!), and he’s been very effective on the year thanks to low walk and HR rates.

Duffy throws a rising fastball at 93-94, and a pair of 84-MPH secondaries: a change-up and a slider. Both are very good pitches, and he’ll throw both a quarter of the time or more. Despite the quality of his change, he’s shown pronounced platoon splits, so it’s not a shock to see Danny Valencia up at #2 again.

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

Moore took advantage of the league’s unfamiliarity with him and had a few solid starts before the bad started outweighing the good. Let’s hope Gonzales can do the same. Actually, let’s just hope Dipoto’s right and he’s throwing way, way better than he has in the recemt past and he’s a clear, obvious upgrade. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of hope.

Tyler O’Neill homered off of Sam Gaviglio to lead Memphis to a 5-4 win over Tacoma. Boog Powell went 3-4 with a HR, but the story was Shaw Simmons pitching a perfect inning and touching 97. I’ve been a big fan of Simmons since seeing him pitch against the M’s years ago, and really hope he stays healthy enough to contribute.

Lindsay Caughel’s 7 shutout innings win the pitching line of the night and helped Arkansas beat Tulsa, a team stacked with Ex-M’s minor leaguers. Reliever Brian Moran, one-time Rainier, took the loss in relief, and the Drillers boast not one but two ex-M’s minor league shortstops with Drew Jackson and Erick Mejia. C Marcus Littlewood homered for the Travelers.

Spencer Herrman K’d 9 in 6 IP, but the Nuts still lost 4-1. JP Sears got the save in Clinton’s 8-7 win.


2 Responses to “Game 112, Mariners at Royals – Kingless Again”

  1. Westside guy on August 5th, 2017 4:15 pm

    So, it looks like today’s game has now turned into tomorrow’s double-header. First pitch is tomorrow at 11:15 PDT.

    Assuming it doesn’t rain…

  2. Longgeorge1 on August 5th, 2017 5:32 pm

    Just have a few minutes. Like many I haven’t been posting much and Felix’s recent injury is just another nail in the coffin of a season that really had promise.
    I have no doubt that a “normal” level of injuries to the pitching staff would have resulted in 5 or more wins which would have this team solidly in the wild card race.
    I disagree with the press writer who recently stated that Dipoto took a .500 team, made 400 trades and turned the M’s into a .500 team.
    My personal schedule has made posting during games some what inconvenient. Those who are responsible for this blog have my full thanks for keeping fans like me informed with the goings on of the team and keeping me up to date with the farm and the “modern game”.
    Baseball will always be my favorite spectator sport. Unfortunately years and the heat have moved my favorite participant sport, golf, to the evenings so I don’t get my baseball “live” that often.
    An “old fashioned” double header tomorrow and we have two “new” pieces on the hill. One an old friend. GO M’s!!

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