Mariners Fandom Continues to be Emotionally Abusive

June 21, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 9 Comments 
HITTING (wOBA*) -16.4 (20th) -8.2 17.5 (10th) Athletics
FIELDING (RBBIP) -21.7 (26th) -11.5 19.4 (4th) Athletics
ROTATION (xRA) 15.7 (7th) -5.8 12.3 (10th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 0.5 (15th) -2.8 4.1 (9th) Athletics
OVERALL (RAA) -21.9 (19th) -28.3 53.4 (5th) ATHLETICS

What a disaster of a series performance! And versus the Angels no less, a team I think I despise over all else in baseball, though that’s a variable and subjective assessment.

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Mariners and Angels Battle for Third

June 17, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 7 Comments 
MARINERS (31-39) ΔMs ANGELS (30-39) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA*) -8.2 (17th) 4.7 32.1 (5th) Angels
FIELDING (RBBIP) -10.2 (22nd) -4.9 -21.0 (25th) Mariners
ROTATION (xRA) 21.5 (5th) 3.3 -28.4 (28th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 3.3 (11th) -0.8 -6.0 (28th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) 6.4 (14th) 2.2 -23.3 (19th) MARINERS

I’m traveling this week so today’s series preview comes with very abbreviated commentary. Just the facts, ma’am, as some old person might have said on some old TV program.

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Oakland Claims First Place, Now Hosts Mariners

June 14, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 27 Comments 
HITTING (wOBA*) -12.9 (18th) -0.4 18.3 (8th) Athletics
FIELDING (RBBIP) -5.3 (21st) 1.9 16.4 (4th) Athletics
ROTATION (xRA) 18.2 (6th) 5.5 14.2 (8th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 4.1 (9th) -1.5 2.3 (11th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) 4.2 (14th) 5.5 51.2 (5th) ATHLETICS

A month ago, on May 15, the Athletics lost to the Rangers and fell to 20-22 on the season. They’ve gone 21-5 since then. They’re doing it again, the jerks.

I suppose seeing runs like that from teams like the Athletics fuels some hope for the Mariners to make such a run. However, if the Mariners did go 21-5 over their next stretch that would — which we must conclude is extremely unlikely — they would still only be on a 87-win pace. That would be contending for a playoff spot but certainly not looking like a lock. And don’t forget the awesome assumption here that the Mariners could pull off 21 wins in their next 26 games. Frankly, the A’s are a much better team.

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A Ripe Time for Revenge Versus the Astros

June 10, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 1 Comment 
MARINERS (27-37) ΔMs ASTROS (22-42) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA*) -12.5 (18th) -5.9 -32.7 (26th) Mariners
FIELDING (RBBIP) -7.2 (21st) -1.3 -32.3 (29th) Mariners
ROTATION (xRA) 12.7 (8th) -0.7 -35.0 (30th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 5.6 (7th) 2.1 -20.4 (30th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) -1.3 (16th) -5.7 -120.3 (30th) MARINERS

It’s nearly unanimous across the board! The Astros are the worst team in baseball. Yeah, the Marlins are worse, much worse, at hitting, but the Astros have baseball’s worst pitching staff and it’s bad enough to edge out Miami for worst team overall, so far. The Astros cannot do anything well, except when they play the Mariners (4-2, +11 run differential) or the Angels (7-3, +10 run differential). One of those is pretty funny. I guess both are, depending on your sense of humor or perspective. It’s probably downright hilarious to Oakland fans, who’ve seen the A’s go 9-0 versus the Astros, but then, the A’s are 3-4 against the Mariners so far so by transitive properties…

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Mariners and Yankees in Seattle for Only Time until Playoffs

June 6, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 13 Comments 
HITTING (wOBA*) -6.6 (18th) 3.2 -33.4 (27th) Mariners
FIELDING (RBBIP) -5.9 (19th) -2.0 -10.0 (22nd) Mariners
ROTATION (xRA) 13.4 (9th) 2.3 9.2 (10th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 3.5 (8th) -0.4 21.2 (1st) Yankees
OVERALL (RAA) 4.4 (15th) 3.2 -13.0 (18th) MARINERS

It’s draft day. Rather, it’s the first of what is now three draft days. It’s a bit of a futile pursuit since the returns typically take a long time and are notoriously unpredictable. However, since it happens only once a year and offers a bit of respite from the present and allow people to dream of the future. Go read Jay’s post below.

The last time Seattle faced the Yankees, in New York, the Mariners came away looking pretty good and sidled up next to that elusive and spooky .500 figure. Since then the Yankees have gone 9-9, but the Mariners have stumbled to 6-13 and yet the two teams still seem to produce odd ratings above. However, I’ll quote myself from that previous preview.

It seems far-fetched for the Mariners to actually be rated a better team than the Yankees here. I don’t think it is… Secondly, other systems agree that the Mariners have slightly under performed their record while the Yankees have over performed theirs. The gap between the two teams in actual standings is six games. Baseball Prospectus’ third-order standings, which uses expected runs scored and allowed adjusted for opponents has the two team just two games apart.

It’s three weeks later and though the team’s records continued along their respective paths, the two teams still have separated themselves in their underlying metrics. Those B-Pro third-order standings have the Yankees at 29-29 and the Mariners at 29-31. Call the difference between 3rd-order wins and actual wins whatever you want, I’ll use luck. Of teams, the Yankees are the “luckiest” team in all of baseball. The Mariners are the second “unluckiest” in the American League and fifth most in baseball. Get those games back, Mariners!

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Mariners Limp Home and Face White Sox

June 3, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 18 Comments 
HITTING (wOBA*) -9.8 (19th) -0.1 -79.2 (30th) Mariners
FIELDING (RBBIP) -3.9 (19th) 0.5 9.9 (10th) White Sox
ROTATION (xRA) 11.1 (9th) -0.9 22.3 (5th) White Sox
BULLPEN (xRA) 3.9 (8th) -2.3 -12.2 (29th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) 1.2 (16th) -2.9 -59.2 (28th) MARINERS

Oh, wow, the worst hitting team in the majors! The White Sox are posting a team slash line of about 25 points worse than the Mariners in both OBP and SLG. And the White Sox play in their joke of a park while the Mariners play in their less laughable park. Using StatCorner’s ratings, only one White Sox hitter — Alex Rios — has had a better than average bat. FanGraphs concurs unless you want to include Dylan Axelrod’s 1-for-2 performance.

In comparison, the Mariners have the following hitters with above average lines: Bay, Franklin, Gutierrez*, Ibanez, Morales, Morse, Peguero, Seager and, yeah, even Justin Smoak.

*Coincidentally funny that Nick Franklin and Franklin Gutierrez line up next to each other in alphabetical order

The Mariners aren’t a bad team, I think, they just seem to sometimes play like a horrendous team. Bonderman is an example of that. Three home runs allowed is a bad number for one start. Two of those were hitters took pitches, while behind in the count, on the outside edge of the zone and hit them over the fence the other way. That doesn’t happen very often. Is Bonderman just more hittable? It sure looked like it, but it’s hard to say after only one start. I don’t think he’ll be up for long regardless, and he wasn’t mowing down hitters in Triple-A either, but that was a weird start, from an overall stat line perspective.

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Mariners End Road Woes Streak and Continue to Minnesota

May 31, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 10 Comments 
MARINERS (23-31) ΔMs TWINS (23-28) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA*) -9.7 (20th) -0.1 -26.4 (25th) Mariners
FIELDING (RBBIP) -4.4 (19th) 6.1 -16.3 (27th) Mariners
ROTATION (xRA) 12.0 (7th) -1.2 -22.7 (26th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 6.2 (6th) -0.2 10.4 (2nd) Twins
OVERALL (RAA) 4.1 (16th) 4.6 -54.9 (28th) MARINERS

So close to taking three of four against the Padres which would have been more encouraging than a series split.

Carlos Triunfel might already be lost in the infield shuffle on the Mariners. Brendan Ryan has surged offensively and is putting on a defensive show as though his baseball life depended on it. And early though it is, Nick Franklin already seems ready to assume the bulk of second base playing time. I realize this will probably be the peak of how we feel about Franklin, but so what? The Mariners are 23-31. Let’s just enjoy this for as long as it will last.

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Mariners and Padres Begin Split Series

May 27, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 3 Comments 
MARINERS (21-29) ΔMs PADRES (22-27) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA*) -9.6 (19th) -0.7 8.4 (13th) Padres
FIELDING (RBBIP) -10.5 (22nd) -4.6 9.1 (12th) Padres
ROTATION (xRA) 13.2 (8th) 4.4 -23.7 (25th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 6.4 (6th) 1.8 -3.0 (18th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) -0.5 (16th) 0.9 -9.3 (18th) MARINERS

The Mariners broke the streak and managed to avoid falling to a 65-win pace. They’re currently on a 68-win pace instead! There’s no time like the near present to continue improving that projection though, the Padres are no juggernaut.

It’s Memorial Day and I have lots of other stuff to do, so my apologies but this will be a brief (actually brief and not a fake brief that turns into thousands of words like Sullivan does) post. Today’s game thread is directly below.

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Bloodied Mariners Confront Strutting Rangers

May 24, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 2 Comments 
HITTING (wOBA*) -8.9 (20th) -3.3 8.5 (10th) Rangers
FIELDING (RBBIP) -5.9 (19th) -8.2 13.0 (5th) Rangers
ROTATION (xRA) 8.8 (9th) -3.2 21.5 (4th) Rangers
BULLPEN (xRA) 4.6 (9th) -1.0 -0.2 (16th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) -1.4 (16th) -14.7 42.8 (3rd) RANGERS

That was a two game series! A two game series and look what it wrought above. That was the Mariners team I feared coming into this season. It was some mediocre pitching but that’s not unexpected given it was the back end of the rotation. It was some mediocre hitting but that’s not unexpected given that I thought our offense was mediocre.

It was horrendous, absolutely horrendous defense and that was my, and a lot of other people’s, big worry. The Mariners definitely traded away some defensive prowess this winter, ostensibly for enough offense to make it a net benefit. Many of us thought it wasn’t enough. It’s looking like it wasn’t enough.

The 2013 Mariners aren’t making the playoffs. I’m pretty confident in that assumption. I never held out hope for that. I did hold out some hope for fake contention, the sort where the team hangs around .500 all summer to at least keep some interest alive as I bide my time waiting for the Seahawks to resume domination of their league. This series against the Rangers seems poised to KO the chances of that quasi-contention as it’s easy to see the Mariners down to 8 or 10 games below the .500 mark by the end. Luckily though, after these three games comes 10 contests versus other losing teams (Padres, Twins, White Sox), so the Mariners might be able to prop themselves back up again.

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Huzzah, More Baseball as Mariners Travel to Anaheim

May 21, 2013 · Filed Under Mariners · 7 Comments 
MARINERS (20-25) ΔMs ANGELS (17-27) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA*) -5.6 (19th) 1.4 4.4 (14th) Angels
FIELDING (RBBIP) 2.3 (16th) -5.6 -17.1 (27th) Mariners
ROTATION (xRA) 11.0 (7th) -2.6 -24.4 (29th) Mariners
BULLPEN (xRA) 5.6 (8th) 1.2 -7.5 (28th) Mariners
OVERALL (RAA) 13.3 (14th) -5.7 -44.5 (27th) MARINERS

Heartbreaking. It’s the word easily at hand for such a series as the one the Mariners just experienced. It’s hyperbolic, of course. Nobody’s heart was literally broken, I hope. Figuratively? I don’t know. Those weren’t the results that most of us were daring to think of after the Mariners seemed on the verge of .500 and had just reached second place in the division.

One thing I wonder is how it might feel to be an Indians fan right now and gone through that series. Have the Mariners had such a series go in their way? They must have, at some point, but if so it’s faded from my memory. This will fade too. Baseball is a long haul and in a sport where they say that failing 7 times out of 10 is a success, at the end of the year there aren’t a whole lot of people celebrating. So go find your light where you can. I’m sad the Mariners were swept. But I’m sad because I cared, so that’s something.

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