As Seattle Mariners fans, we’re conditioned to look towards the future with hope (mostly because the present is so fucking bleak). Sometimes, we look towards the future because that’s when franchise-crippling contracts will expire. Sometimes, it’s because we want a particular manager or GM to be fired. But, usually, it’s because we’ve got some hotshot prospect or prospects skyrocketing through the minors.
You always want to remain cautiously optimistic when it comes to baseball prospects. But, every once in a while, it doesn’t hurt to let your imagination fly.
The Mariners have four pitchers right now, in the Minor Leagues, on the cusp of the Majors, who could range from very-good to Cy Young. In no particular order, they are: Erasmo Ramirez, Danny Hultzen, Taijuan Walker, and James Paxton. Ramirez is the closest to being ready for the Majors, Walker has the highest upside (could be another Felix Hernandez in our pocket), and the other two are very, very good already.
And on March 10, 2012, these four pitchers all appeared in a split-squad Spring Training game against the Arizona Diamondbacks and combined to go 8 innings, giving up 1 run and 4 hits, with 8 strikeouts. Here’s a box score.
And here’s a story by national baseball writer Ken Rosenthal.
Yeah, this game was so big, it drew national attention. Because these guys are THAT good.
Just imagine if these four guys develop the way we all hope they can develop. By the start of the 2013 season, we could be looking at a Starting Five for the ages! Felix and the four kids could sweep the Majors away and lead this team back to prominence!
And to think, if this does happen, we can all look back on a Spring Training game in March of 2012 when 4 of them appeared back to back to back to back. A game that pretty much nobody saw except a few thousand lucky ticketholders in Arizona.