The Mariners Are In A Punishing Cold Spell

The Mariners just finished a 3-6 road trip, losing all three 3-game series 2-1. It’s a testament to … something that we didn’t get swept in any of them, but it still isn’t ideal.

Remember when the Mariners had the biggest divisional lead in all of baseball? That 8.5 game lead is now 4.5 games, the second-slimmest lead in all of baseball. That team directly behind us is now the Astros, not the Rangers (who are 7.5 back). The Astros, embroiled in a 7-game win streak, have climbed to .500 at 40-40. Any notion that this was going to be a cakewalk the rest of the way should probably be dismissed.

It’s a combination of the hitters sucking, the rotation suffering some cracks in the armor, and the bullpen giving up a couple of late leads. You don’t go through a stretch like this without your entire team doing its part to cost you games.

It couldn’t happen at a worse time, either. Apparently, everyone has agreed that late-June is too early to be giving up on their season. For some reason, we have to wait a whole-ass month before guys can start being traded. By the time we get to late July, things will have turned a corner, guys will start hitting again, and it won’t feel like there’s a drastic need for change. We’ll wonder if veterans are giving it one last gasp, and if we’re giving up on them just as they’re finally figuring it out.

But, suffice it to say, the damage has been done. We’re three months in. We’re beyond the first half of the season. If you haven’t figured it out by now, then tough titty, you had 80+ games. Any uptick in production in July will only feel like a mirage.

In some downer news, Bryan Woo is back on the IL, with a hamstring strain. If it isn’t one thing with him, it’s five others. I guess Emerson Hancock will be back, but he also left his most recent start for injury concerns. By all accounts, he’ll be fine, but we’ll see. Neither of those two have proven to be the healthiest horses of the bunch.

The good news is that today’s an off-day. Also, the next three Mondays are all off-days (that third one being the start of the All Star Break). The toughest stretch of season is behind us. Even with the bummer finish, it went better than expected.

The bad news is that even though we’re greeted with a 9-game homestand spread out over 10 days, it’s against three pretty tough opponents: Minnesota, Baltimore, Toronto. Time to put that awesome home record nonsense to the test. If we somehow come out of this with a winning record, you MIGHT get me to be a believer.

Then, it’s just a weeklong trip down the California coast before the break. Nice way to ease into things. But will this cold spell continue? God, I hope not. There’s nothing worse than being forced to watch bad Mariners baseball …

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