Biggest Surprise in MLB. We’re winning. Now what?
Who would have thought at the turn of the New Year, the Seattle Mariners were going to be relevant, yet alone heading into the deadline as perhaps buyers rather than sellers? This team was supposed to be dismantled like a left over artillery shell come mid July.
The thought of most in the baseball community – outside of Seattle of course – we are forever optimists in Seattle and especially those of Washington State University alumni. We typically expect to lose but get really excited when we are even in some type of competitive race come mid point in the season. I guess that’s sports for you. In my opinion Seattle, is a darn good sports town.
The Seattle Mariners beat the Detroit Tigers today 2-1 for the second time in less than 24 hour. They will now get on a flight and head back to Seattle at (51 – 44) and prepare for a series against the Cleveland Indians. The trade deadline is approaching…. The Indians are approaching… we are 7 games over .500. We need the Angels to lose but should we roll the dice and go for it?
The Mariners have perhaps the top pitching staff in baseball. Felix Hernandez is Cy Young worth at 11-3 and a 2.55 era. The guy is 10-2 after Seattle Mariners losses. He has not lost since the week BEFORE the Memorial Day Weekend. There was still snow on the ground in some areas. Then, Jarrod Washburn is superb. It’s not just a fluke either. He has found himself and will be good for years to come. He may even be a better version of Jamie Moyer. He is a competitor. Erik Bedard has the nastiest curveball I can think of in current MLB. If he can get through 6 innings and hand if off to our bullpen we are well on our way to yet another 1 run win.
The bullpen: David Aardsma – Incredible. The D.A. Great nickname. He is able to even intimidate me during the game in a beer garden and from behind a fence. I vow to not curse Jose Lopez’ fielding range again while at the game. We have an understanding. Anyhow, Lights Out. Also, Derrick Lowe is terrific and has a 100mph fastball with a wicked slider and changeup. Sean Greene and Shawn White have been solid and Miguel Batista and Chris Jakubauskas have been very good in long relief.
Our offense most people in the U.S.A. could barely name but 1 or 2 players. Yes. We have Ichiro Suzuki. Followed by Russell ‘The Wonder Muscle’ Branyan and in another month Adrian Beltre will return. However, the offense is where this entire buyer or seller thing is going. We NEED a S.S. Ronny Cedeno is nice but he’s not the answer and could help us with his fielding range at 2<sup>nd</sup> base by moving Lopez to DH or 3<sup>rd</sup> Base until Adrian Beltre returns. Franklin Gutierrez has been looking like the steal of the year. (He and Branyan are tied) – The team is set for a playoff run. A strong top 3 in the rotation (Felix Hernandez, Washburn, Bedard) and a lights out bullpen.
So, Jack Zduriencik… Are we going to pull the trigger and go for it? I say we trade one of our catchers in the farm system and go for a Mark DeRosa type. Actually, to the point: I would like to see the Mariners go for Freddy Sanchez. Jack Wilson is incredible on defense but we need a little pop.