Thursday, September 29, 2005

Captain Ichiro?

From this week's mailbag at the Mariners official site:


Q: Will the Mariners name a team captain in 2006? How about Ichiro?


A: Manager Mike Hargrove's preference is not to have a team captain, so it is unlikely that there would be a team captain in 2006.


Ichiro for captain? Are you kidding me? Trav here's a great opportunity for you to chime in with your Raul for captain campaign.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Pre-Hot Stove Hot Stove News

Start stokin' those embers.

The first nugget of Mariner-relevent offseason news comes today. The Florida Marlins have fired A.J. Burnett. Yep, the soon-to-be number one free agent starting pitcher was canned just hours ago. Pink slip in the locker. "Hang 'em up," they said "That's enough of you. You're not a team player."

You'll be pleased to know that I was there, dutifully reporting for Mariner Magic. I think I heard Jack McKeon mutter, "And that aqua-colored jock strap too, you toad! We paid extra for that."

Seems Burnett was given the royal foot to the hiney in classic Nellie fashion. He said too much. Spoke out against his team. "What a bunch of negative people!" he said of the organization. "Scaredy-cats!" he called the players. ...Or something to that effect.

Why does Burnett's release affect the M's you ask? For one, it eliminates one team from the competition for his services. The Marlins will not be asking him back. And for that matter, might that just eliminate the Mariners from the Burnett sweepstakes before the bidding even starts? We all know they don't like the outspoken, dissenting type.

I'm not sure they would have been big players for A.J. in the first place, but this might narrow their prospective starters list even more. One would assume they would at least give him a call...

Just something to mull...

Let it begin....

Yeah yeah 6 games left Felix pitching tonight whatever. It's time to start talking offseason. Larry Larue sat down with Bavasi and he had a lot of interesting things to say about the offseason plans. Check it out.

It sounds to me like Bavasi's got a plan that most of us would agree with. Starting pitching, a lefty-bat, and anything else from there is gravy. My favorite quote from the article is from Pat Gillick: "That first offseason was a mess for Bill," Gillick said. "I saddled him with a lot."

Since Bavasi has come on, the M's have flat out sucked. Spiezio and Aurillia were disasters. Since that first offseason, I think he's rebounded well. Let's see how he does this winter

Monday, September 26, 2005

Important statistical analysis

Number Muncher for the last week of the season:

Jose Lopez has blasted 17 doubles in 48 games this year. Extrapolated over a full season, the second half of our double play combo would leg out an Edgar-esque 57 doubles.

Thank you.

* This statistical analysis was brought to you by Number Munchers.

Those of you who have played the game, which features an angular frog with an insatiable appetite for numbers, will understand and appreciate their sponsorship. We hope this feature will become a regular in the season to come.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Meche to the 'pen?

OK it's clear that no one cares about the M's before but dammit (most people spell it damnit, but I like to be different) this blog will not die like this season.
Gil Meche. We all know I cursed him when I bought his jersey in 2003. But, he did something very intriguing last night. Pitching for the first time since going on the DL August 20th, Meche pitched 2 innings in relief. His line:
2 IP, 2 K, 19 Pitches
Gil had this to say after the game:

"It's a different mindset coming in from the bullpen. You can get after it; you don't have to pace yourself. I'm just looking forward to getting into a couple more games."


What's Meche's problem been all year? He tries to get cute with his pitches, doesn't go after hitters with his great stuff, and throws tons of pitches. But that quote sounds like he's pretty comfortable coming out of the bullpen. I think it'd be really interesting to see what he could do as a set up man. He's got a great fastball and curve, and could just come right in a go after people. No nibbling, no nothing. 


However, he's moving back into the rotation and Jeff Harris will be in the bullpen. Am I the only one who would like to see more of Meche as a reliever?

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Wednesday, September 14, 2005

What is going on?

The Mariners just finished their second sweep of the Angels this year. No I didn't follow this game, which has become a habit lately for me, but it turns out Yuniesky Betancourt was the hero. Betancourt is like Charles Gipson version 2.0. Actually, he's like a combination of Omar Vizquel's defense, Carl Crawford's speed, and Gipson's bat. I wonder if Ricky grew up hitting balls against a wall and then immediatlely fielding them.

That's win #64 on the season. The M's won 63 all of last year, and there are 17 games left. So say they go 9-8 the rest of the way, that'd be a ten-game improvement from last year. that worth getting excited about? Doesn't feel like it. But, these games they are playing do have meaning. The Angels are in first place, and taking 2 out of 3 from the A's last week (I think...who the hell knows) is pretty cool too.

There's something to be said for learning how to win. A strong finish could carry into next year. Maybe 81-81 next year and in playoff contention in 2007? Or not. Who knows. What a garbage team.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Dan the man.....DONE?

Another story that came across big daddy's desk today regarding Dan WIlson the long time fan favorite catcher of our boys in blue. Dan will be holding a press conference at 4pm pst time at the safe. Details as to what the news conference are not known but it is speculated, at least by me, that Dan will announce his retirement. I will post details after I hear the news conference.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Daddy's return! What is going on with our minor league system!

Today this came across my desk:

"The Office of the Commissioner of Baseball today announced that Michael Morse of the Seattle Mariners has been suspended 10 days, effective today, for violation of Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program"

Yet another Mariner. This team is by far and away the leaders in positive tests. What is going on here!!! Morse is our boy and I believe what he has to say found HERE .

I really don't know why this keeps happening but I freaking tired of it!! Discuss:


It sounds like Morse is being punished 3 times for the same steriod. I am still a bit fuzzy on the details but it doesnt sound like he really has done anything wrong recently.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Reasons to keep watching.....

We realize that we've been slacking a little bit here at Mariner Magic. There are plenty of excuses, but the biggest reason is simple: the Mariners aren't that interesting to talk about right now. Once the season is over, we will have plenty of discussion about the future of the M's, free agent pickups, etc. But we need to find more to talk about for the next month. More importantly, we need reasons to follow the Mariners at all. Here a few things I think are worth watching:

1) Felix.
Do I need to elaborate?

2) The Bullpen
The 2006 bullpen stands to look a lot different than this year's. That's pretty clear. The Seattle P-I noted this last week. Villone is already gone, and I don't see Shiggy or Nelson coming back. That leaves Thornton, Mateo, Putz and Guardado as the only members of the bullpen that spent most of 2005 on the big league roster. I personally hope Thornton is gone. Sure, he's a lefty and he throws hard. But the guy is 29, has poor mechanics, and has shown no signs of being able to put anything consistent together. I may be able to be convinced that he's worth another shot, but I think he should be on a short leash.
However, there are some arms that should get some good work this September. The first is George Sherrill. He's had a couple of rough outings, but it will be interesting to see if he can develop into a good lefty-setup guy. Another is our favorite Ninja, Rafael Soriano. Also from the P-I, he's should be up early this week. The big story of that article is a third reliever, Scott Atchinson. Let's see if any of these guys can give us hope for a strong bullpen in 2006.

3) Joel Pineiro
Ah Joel. We had such high hopes for you. So inconsistent this year, but it seems like he may be coming back around. USS Mariner did a nice analysis on how we shouldn't quite get our hopes up though. His last start against the Yankees was very good, and I think it's worth watching to see what he does down the stretch. The rotation for 2006 is in shambles, but Joel being able to be the 3rd or 4th starter would help with that.

4) Adrian Beltre
He's been a big disappointment this year, but has shown some signs of being the player we hoped he would be. From April to June he had 6 HRs and 36 RBI. In July and August he put up 12 HRs and 40 RBI. His .288 BA, .336 OBP, and .538 SLG in August are also encouraging. Not earth-shattering numbers, but a definite improvement. Let's not forgot he's only 26 and about to enter his prime years. A strong September would be nice to see.

5) The middle infield
This has already
been discussed here, but it's still worth watching.

Yes this season has sucked. Yes football season has started. But there are still some reasons to follow the Seattle Mariners before the offseason talk heats up. Any other ideas?