Random Mariners Thoughts of Week 14

Yesterday’s game couldn’t have gone much worse.  Hell, the whole weekend series – except for a couple fortunate innings on Saturday – was a God damn trainwreck!

How is it that we manage to face Chris Sale EVERY SINGLE TIME we play the White Sox?  There’s gotta be some sort of Illuminati shit at play here.  He essentially ruined my entire Friday night with his bullshit.  Then, Saturday was like some gift from the gods.  The Mariners finally managed to put runners on in the top of the 8th, only to blow their chance (while, at the same time, making Felix sit for a good 20-30 minutes).  Then, Felix came out in the bottom half (with a low pitch count, but again, after that long break) and broke the 0-0 tie by giving up two runs.  THEN, we somehow tied it in the top of the 9th and took that tie all the way to the 14th, where a runner was finally pushed across so we could all go home.

Then came Sunday.  I’m not even going to half-ass recap this one, because all you need to know is Hector Noesi shut us down and this is a ghost typing up this post because I killed myself last night.  I just couldn’t take the thought of everyone in baseball knowing that my favorite team was handled by Hector Fucking Noesi, the most suck-ass piece of shit in the game today.  Ever seen a ghost who had to wear a paper bag because he was so ashamed?

Getting pretty sick and tired of getting our asses handed to us when we play the White Sox on the road.  Also, how do we go there and not hit a homer in three games?  Is that even possible?

The week wasn’t a total loss, because we managed to sweep the Astros, giving us a 4-2 road trip.  Could’ve been better, but then again it probably should’ve been worse.  And, if my pocket calendar is anything to be believed, that’s the last time we’ll have to set foot in Chicago the rest of the year.

In Roster Transaction News:  I think there’s been some sort of major move every week this season.  This last week was no different.  Taijuan Walker got the call-up, as expected.  What wasn’t so expected was Stefen Romero getting sent down now, and not six weeks ago and not one of our 8 bullpen arms.  I guess LMC wasn’t lying when he intimated that the Mariners wouldn’t need the 4th bench player until August.  This shocking move was only surpassed a few days later when Corey Hart was brought up and Cole Gillespie was DFA’d.  That shot our load of right-handed bench bats, but then again, it got Endy Chavez out of the DH role, so I say that’s a wash.

It’s nice to have Taijuan Walker back.  It’ll be nicer when his command starts to improve.  I just can’t shake the feeling that this is more of a showcase to be traded.  I still don’t really know how I feel about trading Taijuan Walker, but as with any trade, I feel nothing but a sense of doom, no matter what the team does.

Also of note in the past week:  Justin Smoak was optioned to Tacoma.  He was on the DL, he was with Tacoma already, doing his rehab thing, and now he’s in Tacoma because that’s where he belongs.

I wonder how managers feel in situations like this.  LMC spent the whole off-season and Spring Training boasting about how “Justin Smoak is my first baseman” and predicting that he’d lead the league in doubles and whatnot.  Now, he’s got to admit that he either utterly misinterpreted Smoak’s skillset, or that he was full of shit and feeding us a line a mile long.  I know everyone has the right to change his mind when presented with new facts, but isn’t it at least a LITTLE embarrassing to be so wrong, so publicly?

Truth be told, this White Sox series always felt like a loser.  The Mariners were riding high.  Dating back to the Kansas City series, the Mariners had won 10 of 12.  You could see what was happening, see people starting to think that maybe not just the Wild Card, but the DIVISION was in play, and you could see us coming back down to Earth a little bit.  It happens.  Teams have their kryptonite.  Playing in Chicago just so happens to be OUR kryptonite.  That and hitting home runs in Safeco in April & May.  And our bullpen whenever we have a mid-summer series in Cleveland or Baltimore.  And Dustin Ackley when he plays in the months April through September.  All of these things are kryptonite-related!  There’s no explaining it; you just have to sit back and hope that these things won’t prevent you from contending.

It’ll be supremely important how the Mariners respond this week.  You just had your first series loss in a couple weeks.  Your hitting has gone back into the tank a little bit.  You’re back at home, which is NEVER a good thing for your bats.  And, you’re seven games from the All Star Break.

Maybe, as the week goes on, and I run out of ideas of what to write about, I’ll do the research.  But, it just seems to me that the Mariners always play MUCH worse than usual in the days leading up to the All Star Break.  Like they’re all high school seniors in the days leading up to Spring Break.  Everyone (except the actual All Stars) has their heads in the clouds about their plans for those three days before they have to get back on the grind.  I can understand it, to a point, but we’re in a playoff race!  We can’t be throwing away games, especially when four of them are against the hapless Twins!

The Mariners made the genius move of pushing back Felix’s next start to Friday.  Last week, I was looking at the schedule and where his starts would land and I thought it was a damn shame that he had to be wasted against the Twins, when we played the A’s the very next day.  I suppose LMC felt the same, because that oversight has been corrected.  Now, instead of Walker, Iwakuma, and Young going against the A’s, it’s Felix, Walker, and Iwakuma.  I know Young has been solid this year, but skipping one of his starts against the best team in baseball just makes good sense!

In other news, the A’s traded for a couple of starting pitchers from the Cubs.  They’ve both been outstanding this year, to this point, so it turns what was a strength for the A’s into a mega-strength.  I’m going to need to see about a handful of injuries to important A’s players before I can believe in a chance to contend for this division.

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