Game 68, Angels at Mariners – Brooms Out

marc w · June 13, 2018 at 12:20 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Marco Gonzales vs. Garrett Richards, 1:10pm

After two *consecutive* games in which Mike Trout has had multi-homer nights, the M’s go for the sweep today behind Marco Gonzales, one of the league’s hottest starters. I’ve said all I can say about how improbable and bizarre this run is, but The Ringer’s Ben Lindbergh has a great post today on the M’s and how we long-suffering fans deserve a little luck on our side for a change.

That post shows how the M’s are faring vis a vis their preseason projections at each position. What’s striking to me about that exercise is that, at least for the position players, the projections *correctly* ID’d 1B as a concern, and has been mostly right about a number of spots. They also saw Jean Segura and Mitch Haniger as above-average players. Where they missed is just how FAR above-average those two would be. Segura’s absolutely on fire right now, but Haniger’s had both a torrid streak and a cold snap, and I feel we have a pretty good handle on who he is as a player. Those projections undersold his patience and power, and he’s demonstrated both this year. Segura’s BABIP may eventually come down a bit, but he’s both hitting for a touch more power and demonstrating able defense at SS, and thus blowing his own projections out of the water. Those projections accounted for each guy’s potential to collapse – Haniger’s swing-and-miss getting the best of him, or posting a stubbornly low average, and Segura regressing to his 2014-15 nadir. What I think we’re seeing is that their FLOOR was a lot higher than the projections thought; Jean’s simply not the same hitter (or person) he was in Milwaukee, and Haniger’s a better all-around hitter than he first came up in the Brewers and D-Backs systems.

Spin-master Garrett Richards dominated the M’s in his first start against them, but the M’s are absolutely magical now, so…uh, good luck with that one, Garrett. Richards K% is over 27% this year, a mark that would easily be a new career high for him. But his control problems that were evident as early as the Cactus League haven’t subsided, so he’s on track to set a career high in BB%, too. Whether its his freakish spin rates or a deceptive delivery, Richards has never shown much in the way of platoon splits.

1: Gordon, 2B
2: Segura, SS
3: Haniger, CF
4: Cruz, DH
5: Seager, 3B Andrew Romine, 3B
6: Span, LF
7: Healy, 1B
8: Gamel, RF
9: Zunino, C
SP: Gonzales

Making his debut for the Angels today is 3B David Fletcher, whom you may have heard of through Carson Cistulli’s remarkably effective Fringe Five series at Fangraphs. Prior to this year, Fletcher was a low-power, low-K oddball, someone with good bat-to-ball skills, but without a position that would allow that particular skillset to play. This year, seemingly out of nowhere, he’s hitting for some power. A swing-change guy? No, not really – his fly ball rate is actually down, it’s just that more of them are leaving the yard. Salt Lake City effect? Maybe, though he didn’t show this in half a year there in 2017. We’ll see how he looks now that Zack Cozart’s shifted over to SS as the Angels wait for the return of Andrelton Simmons. In related news, it’s stunning just how different this line-up looks without Simmons, who’d blossomed at the plate for Anaheim. Imagine the M’s without Segura. Yeeesh.

The M’s have signed most of their recent draft picks, including 11th rounder, Damon Casetta-Stubbs. Josh Stowers, Michael Plassmeyer, Jake Anchia, Joey O’Brien, and Joey Gerber are some of the top-10 rounders who’ve inked deals. Still waiting – and probably not for long – on 1st rounder Logan Gilbert, 3rd rounder Cal Raleigh, and the rest.

The Rainiers welcome Omaha to Tacoma tonight, as the R’s kick off a homestand against the Royals’ affiliate. They were off after their first extra-inning win in Nashville on Monday night.
Arkansas starts a series in Springfield against the Cardinals. The Travs lost to NW Arkansas last night 7-4, as the Naturals took advantage of a rare off-night from RP Art Warren. One of the batters Warren walked? Former Rainier and Team Italy mainstay Alex Liddi.
Modesto continues a series in Visalia; the Rawhide destroyed the Nuts last night 11-3. Randy Bell gets the start for Modesto in tonight’s game.
Clinton got blanked by Astros’ affiliate Quad Cities yesterday 4-0, but the two teams are back at it tonight, with the Lumberkings giving the ball to Clay Chandler to start.


11 Responses to “Game 68, Angels at Mariners – Brooms Out”

  1. WTF_Ms on June 13th, 2018 2:26 pm

    Ugh….here we go again! Do NOT pitch to Trout, and the outfield needs to adjust better.

  2. mrakbaseball on June 13th, 2018 2:30 pm

    Looking at Mariners reddit, it’s funny about all these M’s “fans” who have no idea who Rich Waltz is.

  3. Grayfox3d on June 13th, 2018 2:50 pm

    Romine is such trash! and why are we still pitching to Trout? he’s the only reason they have had any chance in these games… just walk him!

  4. WTF_Ms on June 13th, 2018 4:03 pm

    GrayFox3d, I agree with you. Were it not for Trout, these would be easy wins. Instead, we make it “interesting”….They don’t even have to throw the 4 pitches anymore! Hold up 4 fingers, and save the trouble.

  5. WTF_Ms on June 13th, 2018 4:16 pm

    How hard was that? Walk him or hit him in the butt and make him limp to first. Either way, not a homer.

  6. mrakbaseball on June 13th, 2018 4:46 pm

    20 games over .500!

  7. Longgeorge1 on June 13th, 2018 4:48 pm

    If Hanniger does not make the All-Star team I will not watch it. All 5 tools, is there any better.

  8. WTF_Ms on June 13th, 2018 5:03 pm

    Wow….good thing the bats are coming alive!

  9. Grayfox3d on June 13th, 2018 5:27 pm

    We got rid of Motter in favor of Romine… Motter had a bit of pop and could play any position… it looks like Romine couldn’t get a base hit even if there were no infielders, need to fix the bench. I am happy about the win but that bases loaded situation towards the end of the game was so very frustrating to watch unfold.

  10. mksh21 on June 13th, 2018 8:25 pm

    Romine has been horrid his entire career. I don’t understand him being in the majors at all.

  11. eponymous coward on June 14th, 2018 5:11 pm

    We got rid of Motter in favor of Romineā€¦ Motter had a bit of pop and could play any positionā€¦

    Motter also rubbed the front office and his teammates the wrong way, and the M’s are not going to take a marginal improvement in a bench player just so we can tolerate an a$$hole in the clubhouse, because OMG, we get two-tenths of a WAR that way.

    It’s one thing to tolerate Ted Williams or Dick Allen as your teammate or your player in the organization when they have their jerk moments. 24th-25th guys on a roster don’t get the luxury of being that kind of player because their performance is pretty close to “replacement player”. Yes, that means that sometimes Wille Bloomquists or Andrew Romines will get jobs instead of Taylor Motters. It’s a marginal downgrade but if it makes your clubhouse and organization easier for the other guys… as long as my organization isn’t trading 2 or 5 WAR players for 0 WAR ones with nice personalities, but 0.2 ones for 0 ones, I can probably live with it.

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