Note: I haven’t been commenting much on the Seattle Seahawks so far this season. With the year ending injuries to key defensive stars Cliff Avril, Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor, plus the problems with the offensive line and the running game, I have been, more or less, in “wait and see” mode as regards this […]Read the Rest →
Well…I was going to write my next Mariners blog giving you my impression of things two weeks into this young season. But watching Felix Hernandez pitch tonight against the Tigers has changed things. Across 8 innings thus far against the best hitting team in the American League King Felix has given up four hits and one measly unearned run while walking none and striking out 12. Tonight we have been treated to vintage Felix. Unfortunately we have also been treated to the typical Mariner offensive performance whenever Felix pitches. That offense through 8 innings consists of 6 hits, 1 run and couple of walks. And when I say typical I do mean typical. Through the ten previous consecutive Felix starts the Mariners have generated a total of something like 21 runs in support of him, an average of about 2 runs per nine innings. The Mariners offensive struggles over the last few seasons are well known but when Felix pitches they take on legendary proportions. As I write this piece the Mariners are hitting in the bottom of the ninth with the game tied 1-1. Felix did not pitch the top of the ninth so is in line for another no decision in this game. Kendrys Morales led off the inning with a clean single and Mike Morse walked putting men on first and second with no one out. Raul Ibanezstepped up and promptly ripped the guts out of the budding rally by hitting into a double play. With 2 outs and the winning run parked at third Justin Smoak then struck out. The game is now moving into extra innings.
Since we are on the subject of the Mariners offense let us take a look at how it is faring so far this season. The Mariners thus far rank 16th in runs scored, are a paltry 27th (of 30 teams) in team batting average (.219) and 26th in on base percentage (.285). With stats like that it is not surprising that the M’s are already 3 games under .500 and 5 games out of first in the AL West. As far as individual players are concerned Dustin Ackley stands out as the most beleaguered. He is something like 5 for 47 on the season and seems to have forgotten how to hit. He either gets it going soon or he will have to be sent down to get straight in the minors. Justin Smoakis barely hitting .200 with no homers and Brendan Ryan, after a decent start the first week of the season, has now reverted to his .190 batting average form from last season. Though hitting a bit better average wise Jesus Montero is still sub .250 and also has no homers. Ditto Kyle Seager. The Mariner hitters showing promise thus far are Michael Morse with his 6 home runs and a .290 average, Franklin Gutierrez and Kendrys Morales. Michael Saunders was also coming on until he tried to occupy the same space as the right field wall last week and sprained his shoulder.
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