Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Game 62: Mariners 3, Phillies 1

Louisiana native Gil Meche turned in his best performance of the season, allowing just one run on three hits in eight innings to the hottest team in baseball. Now that's some tastey cajun cookin'.

Those who obsess about important statistics such as K/9 (strikeouts per nine innings) will dismiss this game as an aberration - Meche mashed just four last night. Those who saw Gil's curveball snapping shut over the outside corner, look at intangibles such as confidence, and believe in the general goodness of Louisiana will see the outing as a good omen for a rotation looking for a pitcher who at least roughly resembles an ace. You choose.

In other news, Ichiro reached 1,000 hits in 696 games. He is the third fastest to that milestone. Less encouraging is the fact he continues to lift the ball to right field and swing at pitches up in the strikezone. He seems to be hitting the ball hard, which isn't necessarily a great sign. By my observation, the more he finesses the ball and bangs it into the ground, the higher his average climbs. It's odd, but it seems like the more he squares up pitches, the more often he gets out. Anyone else have a similar observation?

Dave Hansen hit a line-drive homer for an insurance run - who cares, it would be nice if a regular would go deep. Eddie Guardado continued his pinpoint controll with a mediocre fastball, which apparently translates to closing dominance.

Overall, a good day for pinch-hitter types and spicy southeastern ciusine.

5 comments:

  1. Always good to see Gil perform well. You're right PWhitty and the Fam about the confidence factor. The thing I noticed is that he kept his pitch count down. 119 in 8 innings is progress for him. He's been getting to 100 by the 5th inning a lot this year, so that's good to see. He doesn't need to be the ace of this staff, but he can make a great 2 or 3.

    That's an interesting point you brought up with Ichiro. He is the kind of guy who, when he's really going, is slapping balls all over the place, and "hittin' 'em where they ain't". What a corny phrase. I suppose it's better than "safely hitting the leather spheroid where the nine defensive players are not located."

    10 game homestand off to a good start so far.

    Eddie is flat out money right now. He made Abreu, Burrell, and Thome look like, well, the Mariners middle of the lineup. I still like the idea of trading him. Braves, Mets, Marlins, Cubs all seem like potential buyers.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Gil remains my favorite Mariner pitcher. When he's on, he's the closest thing to an ace they have...considering they don't have an ace at all.

    I'm all for trading veterans who have name value and a little bit of gas left in the tank - that combo can sometimes get more than what they're actually worth. Boonie and Guardad seem to fit that bill. I'd trade Boonie for whatever proven major league pitcher or minor league position prospect we can get at this point.

    I'm sure Eddie could get a lot from a contender in July. I guess I'd go ahead and do it if you could get a young starter, but I'd hate to see what happens to the bullpen without his fire and leadership at the back end. Moving everyone up one space in ranking would be an absolute disaster, even with Soriano back in the mix.

    I suppose I'd like to hold on to a proven closer until it's clear another one is ready and waiting in the wings - much like the Angels were able to do with Percival and K-Rod. As much as I like Putz and Soriano, I can't say either is ready to foot the bill, especially since Soriano won't really be at full strength until next year.

    ...if a deal is too good to be true for Eddie, then do it, but otherwise let's put off throwing a new closer out there until we absolutely have to.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Gil was fantastic last night. He looked like the pitcher we all want him to become, the anchor of an anchorless rotation.

    Ichiro continues to be one of the greatest players I have ever had the opportunity to watch. He has become the 3rd fastest to 1000 hits in the history of the game. Can you imagine where he would be if he had come over to MLB when he was....say 24. The numbers would be staggering. The idea can now be brought up; or at least I think it can, that Ichiro will be the second Mariner inducted into the hall of fame. The first of course is Junior.

    Trade talks are starting and that’s good. There are two approaches that the Mariners will take this June-July. Approach A will be help us now. If they feel that have a run in them this year then they will trade for proven young major league talent (cough Oliver Perez). I think their line for determining if they are in is 5-7 games out of first, which lets face it is not that big a stretch. The second approach, approach B, will be trading for yet more prospects in hopes that we strike gold. The more I see of the Freddie trade, which was approach B.) last year, the more I like it. Morse and Reed are the real deal. Olivo may pull it together but even if he doesn’t it looks like we got two guys out of that trade that are worth while, while the Sox’s got Freddie and that guy who broke up Schilling’s no hitter with a bunt. His name will jinx the boards.

    I for one think the difference between the two approaches is negligible. The only thing I don’t want to see if the Mariners trade Eddie and Boone for an older guy. Another concern is the talk of trading Eddie. While I think he could get the mariners a nice return, if they really believe that they are in this, like I think they can be, then we need him in our pen. Putz is not ready, simple as that. Putz has the potential to be good and I am pulling for him but he is not ready yet. Soriano is another option, but honestly how good would he look along side Felix the cat in the rotation??? It would be filthy. In the next few weeks I am going to compile a list of available guys and highlight the ones I think the Mariners should head after. It might spark some good conversation.

    Good win, and after a brief Hiatus I’M BACK!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. That is the dilemma with Eddie. Who replaces him? Putz does have some closer experience from last year and Soriano looked like the next Rivera 2 years ago, but it's definitley not a KRod/Percival or Rivera/Wetteland situation. There is a lot to be said for having that stability in the 9th inning.

    My other concern with Eddie is his health. The Seattle Times (http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/mariners/2002335068_mari14.html) says that his rotator cuff is fully torn. He may be a ticking time bomb. I'd hate to see him go down in August and we get nothing in return for him.

    I only suggest trading him because I have concerns about the starting pitching and think someone could help us out, ie the Kyle Davies idea I proposed.

    Who knows though? It's going to get interesting over the next few weeks.

    I should post a picture of my Meche jersey every time he pitches well. It could be a like a Ks for Kids kinda thing where each picture of the jersey earns $25 for the Mariner Magic admins.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I still like the Kyle Davies idea too, if the Bravos would go for it!

    I like Travis' comment about plan A and Plan B. I don't think it's unrealistic for the Mariners to have a shot at contention if the pieces keep coming together as they have been.

    Too bad if Guardado has a completely torn rotator cuff... not only would he be unable to help the M's on the field, he wouldn't really be tradable, would he?

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.