M’s show some fight in a couple games but lose series to Astros

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Photo credit @mariners

Outscoring the Houston Astros by a score 28 – 23 runs in a 4-game series sounds nice right? Scoring 7 runs a game should be the case for wins galore! Well that isn’t the case when the Seattle Mariners score half of that in one game and demonstrate again that while they show glimpses of ability, they fall to the opposition when tasked to prove it.  The Astros lacked their trio of all-stars in Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and George Springer but the M’s couldn’t pull it together for at least a split.

On the heels of a Jay Bruce trade, rumors now swirl about Mariner’s pitcher Mike Leake heading to Arizona. Add in the recent MLB draft where new picks and minor leaguers in the M’s system get more attention than the games, the season has officially moved to irrelevance.

The Mariners at this point are often noncompetitive and we turn our attention to which young players will stick. No doubt there will be some entertainment as more veterans (Like the earlier mentioned Leake and Edwin Encarnacion) will be cast asunder at the trade deadline and we can speculate what kind of prospects we can get.

Hey on the bright side folks, the Robinson Cano deal is sinking the New York Mets, and they say misery loves company…we have it.

Jun 3      vs  Houston              L              4 – 2

We can sum up the season on a single play this year. In the 6th inning, Houston had runners on 1st and 3rd with 1 out. Yuli Gurriel hit a bouncer to shortstop Dylan Moore—Moore fielded the ball and rather than go for the double play he launched it home, the only problem is that catcher Omar Narvaez was nowhere to be seen as he ran to back up 1st. Thus, is a perfect encapsulation of the worst defensive team in baseball and the worst defense I have seen in my lifetime of watching this baseball squad. Mariners manager Scott Servais put the blame on the catcher.

“When the ball is hit the first thing you are thinking is it’s a double play, and Dylan actually made the right read. He wasn’t going to be able to turn a double play on that,” Servais said. “He made a very athletic throw to the plate, and Omar just vacated too early. You got to make sure he is committed to going to second before you trail the play to go back it up.”

I am not sure who is to blame, but this team needs to find better chemistry and better gloves. The M’s own the MLB lead in most errors by more than 10 over the next team. This is a huge indictment on the GM and manager as pitching (we will get to that later) and defense is what baseball is all about and this team has neither.

Jun 4      vs  Houston              L              11 – 5

The General Manager is a big proponent on “controlling the zone.” This is a philosophy of getting deep into pitch counts and getting the pitch you want and wearing out the opposing pitchers. While initially, the M’s found success ranking #4 in walk, they rank dead last in strikeouts with 634. Essentially, the M’s are so patient they watch other teams pitch rather than participate by swinging the bat.  When they do swing the bat, they average a paltry .320 on base percentage.

The M’s do rank #1 in homers but that is about the only way they score runs. On Tuesday, the M’s struck out 11 times! The M’s lead the league in games with 10 or more strikeouts and are barreling in on an MLB record for the season.

As a side note, former Mariner Wade Miley got the win with a 5 inning 3 run game.

Jun 5      vs  Houston              W           14 – 1

Will wonders never cease? The M’s finally put it all together for a change. Mike Leake had his best outing of the season as he went a full 9 innings allowing just 1 run. Getting thru the Astros with 119 pitches, M’s fans desperately hope that Jerry Dipoto trades him while his trade value is high.
I personally think Mike Leake is a very good pitcher and on a good team is a valuable contributor. But for the sake of the ex-Sun Devil, I hope he can get on a contender and the M’s can get a good value on the solid journeyman.

Jun 6      vs  Houston              L              8 – 7

Well it took 14 innings to lose; that is different. Justin Verlander moved into the #4 spot all time in strikeouts this week and proved his worth by mowing down 7 Mariners.  The M’s were able to run off Verlander in the 7th though, with a Mallex Smith single to score Shed Long and Dylan Moore.

Encarnacion would do his best to save the game with a 9th inning game tying single. And Narvaez would have another equalizer in the 10th inning to keep the M’s in the game. Unfortunately, former AquaSox pitcher Matt Festa gave up a sac fly game winner to seal Seattle’s fate.


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