Game 145, Padres at Mariners

marc w · September 12, 2018 at 3:38 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Wade LeBlanc vs. Joey Lucchesi, 3:40pm

The M’s faced rookie Joey Lucchesi not long ago, back at the end of August. At that time, I noted that Lucchesi had started the year brilliantly, armed with a weird change-slider hybrid thingy, but as the league figured him out, he was scuffling. Of course, the cure for a struggling pitcher is often pretty obvious: a struggling opposing line-up. That’s what he got in the M’s, and he proceeded to take them apart, with 9 Ks in 6 2/3 IP. Have the M’s figured out his one trick? Has Lucchesi made counter adjustments late in the year? Does any of it matter?

I ask because the M’s have the look of a team that’s completely spent, and doesn’t much want to keep playing games their own play has rendered meaningless. It has to hurt, to know you’ll be the team everyone thought blew a great chance at the wildcard, to see all of the miserable playoff odds graphs plummet towards zero. I have no idea how I’d motivate the players at this point, so I’m not really blaming Scott Servais for this particular bad look. All I can say is that it’s getting pretty miserable for the fans. There’s no one coming up that fans are excited to see. I’ve almost convinced myself I’m interested in Shawn Armstrong, who’s been very solid thus far, but he’s an out-of-options middle reliever who came up in the Cleveland org, not a prospect. Dan Vogelbach getting some ABs would be nice, but he’s been hurt, and no one’s going to want to rush back to take part in…this.

So we’re at a similar point to the beginning of the year. We pretty much know who’s going to be on the 2019 Mariners, so it’s just a matter of seeing if they can make some sort of improvement or tweak to their repertoire. I think Wade LeBlanc has been one of the unsung heroes of a solid 2018 club, and he’s been rewarded with a (comparatively cheap) contract extension. At his age (34) and talent level, I can’t quite see how he’s going to best his 2018 performance. Maybe he won’t have to, and the M’s could bank on an improved Marco Gonzales or something, but it’s…strange to be watching September baseball, trying to see how the races could shake out in 2019 and focusing on Wade LeBlanc. A bill is coming due, a bill forestalled by all of the M’s trades for relievers, Mitch Haniger and, bizarrely, by signing LeBlanc. But it’s coming, nonetheless. It won’t come due next year, I don’t think, but the M’s are coming to the limit of weird, semi-successful strategies to kick the can further down the road.

(It’s almost like brawling in the clubhouse hasn’t solved any underlying issues with the club. Weird.)

1: Haniger, RF
2: Cano, 2B
3: Cruz, DH
4: Healy, 1B
5: Seager, 3B
6: Negron, LF
7: Beckham, SS
8: Freitas, C
9: Heredia, CF
SP: LeBlanc

Oh, one of THOSE games. Kris Negron is 32, Beckham will turn 32 in a couple of days. Your September call-ups, everybody!


6 Responses to “Game 145, Padres at Mariners”

  1. WTF_Ms on September 12th, 2018 6:03 pm

    Laughable. Train wreck, I can keep going.

  2. mrakbaseball on September 12th, 2018 6:05 pm

    Despite the Mariners free fall since June, if they end up losing this game, they’ll tie the ’95 M’s win/loss record after 145 games, 79-66. I think I used up my quota for 1995 references.

  3. WTF_Ms on September 12th, 2018 6:22 pm

    The problem is that Houston and Oakland have been on fire for the time we’ve been falling. In ‘95 everyone stayed pretty stable. Oakland is on a “Money Ball” type run right now.

  4. WTF_Ms on September 12th, 2018 6:50 pm

    So, now that we’re effectively out of it for sure. Are we going to start seeing all the call ups? Surely someone can hit better than Healey or Zunino.

  5. Stevemotivateir on September 12th, 2018 7:39 pm

    Weird that they lost tonight. With those 4-9 hitters in the lineup, I really thought the Padres were in for a lickin’.

  6. LongDistance on September 13th, 2018 11:47 am

    At this point, trying to be interested in what’s going on feels like being the guy who doesn’t know when it’s time to go home.

    Tweaking for 2019 Marc? Really? A tweak? Yeah, I’m already ready for hot stove, but nothing short of a Jack Z Disaster Artist Nuclear Hail Mary would make me feel better come end January.

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