April 14, 2013

Game 12, 13 and 14 - A victory to split with the Rangers?

It most definitely is a victory to split a series with these guys. I mean they're the same Rangers that everyone in Spokane loves because they've made the World Series in two of the past three years, and we all know Spokane loves a front-runner. (Yes, I'm making fun of Spokane and being supportive of Seattle for the first time ever, and snowballs are the new interior decoration choice of Satan) The Mariners came into this series limping after getting roughed up by the lowly Astors with a payroll smaller than your local Pizza Hut.

And after today's 4-3 victory over the Rangers (Which Casey and I attended), there is a little more light at the end of the tunnel. Why? Because starter Brandon Maurer finally showed some of the promise he had in spring training. He attacked the Rangers lineup, struck out guys, and most importantly didn't get shelled like he had in his last start.

The M's lineup got 10 hits, which was amazing considering when a batter in a M's jersey gets in the batter's box, you're suprised when he has a batting average over .200. That is still a work in progress and Dustin Akley might be the biggest pit of offense I have ever seen on a baseball diamond (He's hitting .122 so far this season and that's an IMPROVEMENT). Casey and I have serious doubts if he'll even make it to "Dustin Akley Bat Giveaway Night" at Safeco before being sent down to Tacoma.

The win comes after a rather deflating 3-1 loss to the Rangers on Saturday night, so it was good to see the M's bounce back from that. And even though the Seattle offense was it's gawdawful self, at least Joe Saunders looked proficient giving up just 3 hits and 1 unearned run in his 7 innings of work as the starter. On Friday, Iwakuma out-dueled Yu Darvish in a 3-1 win and that should be taken a little seriously.

If you're keeping home at score, that's three straight quality starts by Mariners' starters and the bullpen is quite solid this season. You could also consider Thursday a quality start for Hernandez, even though it's not quite up to Hernandez standards.

The Mariners are now fourth in the majors in quality starts with 7, but rank 25th in the league in ERA largely thanks to Maurer's early troubles. This pitching staff can get the job done, but they need the offense to back it up and that's been the theme for Seattle for the past like 10 years.

27th in the league in batting average (.220) and 26th in on-base percentage (.292).

Got to pick it up guys, but at least for the moment, Seattle is in third place at 6-8. They're facing a super stacked Detroit squad beginning on Tuesday. So hold on your hats, it could get ugly. But, if the M's play with the Tigers, welllll... that would be a whole different story.

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