As the first month of the season comes to a close, all your bullshit “it’s still early” tokens of pithy sentimentality start to hold less and less water. By week’s end, I’m sorry, but it won’t be “early” anymore. We’ll be – for all intents and purposes – 1/6 of the way through the season. There’s a long way to go, sure. And a team can still go on a hot streak. So, while the sample size is still relatively small, you can still draw some conclusions about this team.
The Mariners are now 7-11 after dropping 2 of 3 to the Twins over the weekend. To say that series was a disappointment – especially after Friday’s Felix-fuelled brillance – is a big understatement. The Twins are terrible. And we just blew the weekend games against a terrible team, so what does that say about us?
While I’ve spent the early part of the season harping on the pitching – for good reason – this 7-11 record has been a total team effort. Sometimes, it’s the starters. Sometimes, it’s the relievers. Yesterday, it was the hitting going 0 for 12 with runners in scoring position. Once in a while, it’s the fielding. Every so often, the base running is abysmal. And we can’t forget the number of questionable decisions by LMC and Co. in their gameday management. I alluded to this early in the season, but it really feels like the Mariners have hit the snooze button on 2015. They’re sloppy, undisciplined, and on the whole not ready to take on the rest of Major League Baseball. You hope that one day things will click and we’ll rip off a bunch of wins, but you have to wonder if it’s going to happen before it’s too late.
Last year, the Mariners started out 7-13 before turning things around. So, we’re not all that far off. But, at the same time, due to the hole we dug ourselves, and all the dicking around that was happening in the month of May, we still went into June a game under .500 before we really took off and locked down that winning record the rest of the way. The point is, last year shouldn’t be the benchmark of success. If all you want out of the Mariners is to stay in contention for a while before ultimately falling just short of the post-season, then by all means, keep patting this team on the head while saying, “It’s okay, there’s plenty of time to turn things around, now get out of here you little rascals!”
But, if this team wants to win a division and make what happens in the playoffs its number one priority, then it needs to get its shit together right now! All of these games we keep blowing add up. It’s only a matter of time before the Mariners suffocate under the weight of their own self destruction.