Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Reed done for year

Will Carroll at Baseball Prospectus is reporting that our boy Jeremy is done for the year (subscription required).

The final line? 254/322/352 with only 3 homers. He looked terrible on the bases too, getting thrown out 11 times while stealing only 12. 52% when the breakeven point is somewhere between 70 and 80. Not good.

On the plus side he looked pretty good in center. ESPN gives him a Range Factor of 3.05 and a Zone Rating of .943 both of which are the best marks in the majorsfor CF. His fielding percentage of .992 is 5th in the majors and leads the AL. I don't think his arm is that special, but his 7 putouts would be tied for 5th in majors. None of these are perfect measures of defense (FPctg especially) but taken as whole its pretty clear that not only can Reed handle center, he's a plus defender, maybe exceptionally so.

I'm not ready to give up on Reed offensively just yet, but the next good M's team is going to need more offense from center than a 674 OPS. A lot more.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Things to watch for

Through Saturday Ichiro had 194 hits. 6 hits in his last 7 games would give him his 5th straight year of 200 hits. No one has ever had 5 straight 200 hit years to open their career. I also belive Ichiro is working on a personal streak of 12 straight years of 200 hits.

Richie Sexson needs 2 homers for 40.

Raul needs 1 homer for 20. What, you say 20 homers is not a significant milestone? Well, a certain blogger here at Tatonka, let's call him "Tab," promised to eat a hat if Mr. Ibanez hit 20 bombs at any point during the ridiculous 4 year deal the M's gave him.

He's got 7 games to get it. Gulp.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Hell, yeah!

That rocked! Good things in this game:

6 and 2/3 no hit ball from Felix El Rey. Ends up going 7 and a third, no runs.

Ground balls: 13. Strikeouts: 6. Fly balls: 3. Wow.

Hargrove pulls him after 106 pitches. He was clearly tiring at that point, too.

Reed's catch in the 9th after Eddie had already given up two was pretty sweet as well.

Sherril and Putz play shut-down in the eighth. One batter each, both retired.

No if only the game had meant something....

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Poor use of resources

So Gil Meche, comes off the DL pitches 2 good innings and goes right back into the rotation. Reasons why that is a dumb idea:

1. Meche is not pitching very well this year and two good innings are not more conclusive than the 137 previous ones. Seriously, you are going to let two innings make your decisions for you!
2. Meche's arm and shoulder are very fragile. He has worn down each season since coming back. Any excuse to get his innings down is a good one. Let him finish this year in the pen, don't risk further injury.
3. He appears to like pitching out of the pen. From the Times piece:

It's a different mindset coming in from the bullpen," said the right-hander, who is 10-8 with a 5.16 earned-run average. "You can get after it; you don't have to pace yourself. I'm just looking forward to getting into a couple more games."

I am trying to work myself into a rant here, but I just can't. This season has sucked. Putting Meche back into the rotation for two more starts is just dumb, but who cares anymore.

Monday, September 19, 2005


I go on vacation for 4 days and we get swept by the Rangers, Rangers, Rangers? Terrible.

Heard a couple of calls from Neihaus on KJR. You know the season has gone south when Dave starts sounding pissy. He referred to Franklin's start as Home Run Derby! Hee!

Once Tacoma was bounced from the playoffs they brought up Choo and Rivera. That's it. No Cabrera, no Leone, No Rifkin, no TJ Bohn, no Nunez. I'm not saying that any of these guys would neccessarily be a part of next years club, but whats the point of rolling Sexson out there for 157 games? Just because you can? If you want to let Ichiro chase 200 hits that's fine, but you're going to let Ibanez play in all 162 games? Why?

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Dan Wilson Retires

It's official. I already said goodbye to Dan when he got hurt, but the thing I'm feeling right now is that it really is the end of an era. The Mariners the city fell in love with, the Mariners that gave us our first taste of the post-season, the Mariners that gave us the best game I've ever been to, are officially no longer.

Except for Jeff Nelson, of course. Dang, he ruins everything.

Monday, September 12, 2005

M's Happenings

Couple o things from recent M's Action:

1. Felix is human. A five run inning kinda ruins the start, but it was the only inning he gave up a run, so it wasn't a total disaster. Only 5 k's against 3 walks and just as many ground ball outs as fly outs. I guess he was distracted by the start of the NFL season too!

2. Jamal Strong broke his hand and is out for the rest of the season. Strong has a chance to be th 4th outfielder next year, but this doesn't really help at all. A bench of Morse, Strong, Ojeda and a free agent who can play 2nd and 3rd, would be a huge improvement over this year's bench. If we dropped down to 11 pitchers, there would even be room for Bloomquist!

3. The Rainiers made the PCL championship! Down 2 games to 0, the M's AAA club rallied to win the next three, needing 10 and 11 innings in the last two games. Asdrubal Cabrera hit .375 with 4 rbi in the series. Lopez has about a year to establish himself at second, or Cabrera will take the job from him.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Klattu Verada Nictu...I said your words!

"Chris Snelling, out for the season because of another knee injury, is still waiting to have exploratory surgery. Doctors have yet to find the proper graft from a cadaver to complete the procedure." -- Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 10 September 2005.

I hesitate to point this out, but the fact that we're apparently fresh out of enough cadavers to graft onto the beleaguered Snelling is, well, eerie. I mean, people haven't stopped dying, so a shortage of available cadavers suggests that the dead are walking around using Alternately, maybe this story is just a cover for the fact that the Mariners' staff of physicians has run out of eye of newt, and this sounded like a better public statement to them to distract attention.

Either way, it is further evidence of...something...lurking in the vicinity of Chris Snelling. Something that is not...natural. The horror!

I say we call in Bruce Campbell, just to be safe.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Morse suspended for Roids

Mike Morse was suspended today by MLB for a positive steroid test. Prior to today, it was a poorly kept secret that Morse was suspended twice last year for steroids, once in the White Sox organization and then, post-trade, in the M's system at San Antonio.

Today, Morse acknowledged his steroid use and claims that it is all from the 2003-2004 offseason when he did take deca and Winstrol to help him rehabilitate a torn hammy. He further claims that all three suspensions (two in the minors and the major league one handed down today) were as a result of that one rehab program and that he has not taken anything since January of 2004. He admitted that taking the steroids was a terrible mistake.

A couple of mainstream media people, notably Ken Rosenthal at FOX and Peter Gammons at ESPN (pay to read) have jumped on MLB for suspending Morse, calling it unjust, and double jeopardy. By tomorrow, a lot of columnists will pile on, I expect. These are the same talking heads and sports pundits who were reaming Selig and Fehr after the Congressional hearings for having such a weak steroid policy. So dial down the indignation a touch, okay boys?

Unfortunately for Morse, that is just the way the system is set up. In the minors, you can be repeatedly suspended as long you keep testing positive. There is no way to conclusively prove that you are not still using as long as it keeps showing up in your system. If testing postive, but at a lower level got you off the hook then guys would just lower the dose every time they got caught and keep using for however long they could get away with it. And the Major League testing program, ignores the minor league results. Every player starts in MLB with a "clean slate" drug testing wise.

If Morse's story is true, and I have no reason to doubt him, it is a bit of a bad deal for him I guess, but nobody made him take the steroids. And its well known that these drugs can show up in your system for a good 18 months after taking them. He took the steroids, he's going to have to pay the price. And really, one more 10 day suspension isn't going to kill him. Its not like teams are going to blacklist him or anything. This is baseball after all. If the kid can hit, he'll play, for someone, somewhere.

I think we all agree steroids are a bad thing. If we want to get them out of the game, we can't be making exceptions every time someone comes up with a plausible story. I appreciate that Morse is the first big-leaguer to stand up and say, "yeah, I took them." Not admire mind you, but appreciate. I think in the long run, this will serve him better than saying it was a supplement or a tainted test or whatever. But he did the crime, now he's got to do the time.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Dear Mr. Hernandez,

I am writing to apologize to you. First of all, for missing your last home start, against Chicago, that was a mistake on my part and I'm very sorry. I almost missed last night also, but after getting home and finding out that my wife didn't have to work after all I drove like a madman and paid 60 bucks for two upper deck tickets! I hope that makes up, in some small way, for me missing the other start.

I also apologize for the sorry state of your offense. 3 hits against a 42 year old having, by his own admission, "a disappointing year." The team can't hit, they just can't. They only have two guys in the whole lineup that scare anyone, two more who are reasonably productive and the rest of them are just bleah. Lopez should hit someday, I still have some hopes for Reed and Joe Torre and Jessica Alba's Love Child is way better than anything else we've been getting from catcher this year, but basically over half the lineup at this point is pretty damn sucky. Anyway I apologize for that.

Finally, I apologize for the weird crowd last night. It was the quietest shutout I've ever been too. I don't know if it was because of a lot of Yankee fans or the hunidity or what, but I've never seen a crowd sitting on its hands that much. The only time the stadium got excited was to boo A-Rod. Please don't hold it against us, the atmosphere in your other starts has been way better and I'm sure it will be electric from here on out.

So that's it. I'm sorry I missed the start, I'm sorry that our team is so bad that have only 2 wins to go with your 1.84 ERA, your .84 WHIP and your sick, sick 5 to 1 K/walk ratio. But most of all, I'm sorry that it didn't really seem like we had your back last night at the Safe. It won't happen, again.

Your Pal,