Mariners Take Series Over Orioles

It shouldn’t be a big surprise; however, the Mariners beat the Baltimore Orioles Sunday 13-3. It means the Mariners took three out of four games; the only loss took place Saturday afternoon.

Both the Mariners and the Orioles scored a run in both the first and second innings then the third inning it was all Mariners scoring eight runs to put the game away. The Mariners did something we would like to see more often they hit a lot of singles in the third inning. All the runs happened because of the singles hit except one and that was a sacrifice fly by Omar Narvaez which actually was the first out of the inning.

The Mariners scored two more runs in the fourth inning on a two-run homer by Mac Williamson. Though he hasn’t had a lot of hits they do count well when he does. The Orioles scored their third run in the in the sixth inning and the Mariners tacked on one more in the seventh inning.

Mariners brought up two relievers on Sunday from Tacoma. They both pitched in the game. Matt Carasiti relieved for Kikuchi in the seventh inning striking out three batters. His control was excellent in the game. Something we haven’t seen much from the relievers. The other reliever was Mike Wright who pitched the final two innings. He gave up a hit but struck out two batters as well. He had been scheduled to start Sunday for the Tacoma Rainiers so going to innings not a big deal for him.

The Mariners sent down Gerson Batista to Tacoma. He has a wicked fastball going upper 90s but having control problems. He will be back with the Mariners sometime this season I expect. Also, the Mariners released lefty Jesse Biddle who they had acquired earlier from the Atlanta Braves. He had struggle pitching for the Mariners, and to add Carasiti and Wright to the 40-man roster they had to designate Biddle for assignment.

The Mariners had to transfer Chasen Bradford to the 60-day injured list to make room for the two relievers as well. Bradford is on the 60-day injured list because of a strained right forearm. Right now the Mariners are not sure whether he needs surgery or extensive rehab. We hope things go well for Bradford because he can be a good part of the Mariners’ bullpen.

The Mariners have Monday off before resuming action on Tuesday at Milwaukee against the Brewers. This allows Marco Gonzales who will start Tuesday and the rest of the starting rotation an extra day off. The Mariners will play three games in Milwaukee followed by three more in Houston to finish off June. The Mariners right now are 10-12 for June so they do have a change to break even or have a winning record for the month though not an easy task since the Brewers and Astros are good teams.

The Mariners will start off July at home taking on the St. Louis Cardinals for three games then three more against the Oakland A’s which is followed by the all-star break. The rest of July the Mariners will play mostly division rivals Oakland, Los Angeles and Texas. The only team outside the division will be the Detroit Tigers where the Mariners will play four games them at home near the end of the month. Go M’s.

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Mariners Beat Royals in Final Game of Series

Wednesday the Seattle Mariner had their final game of the series and the season against the Kansas City Royals. After frustration in the first two games the Mariners pitching and hitting surfaced.

Marco Gonzales had his third good start in a row winning all three games. This was after losing five games in May and his first start in June. In all three games he has only given up two runs in each game. I would have to say that is a good sign for Marco.

In this game Gonzales went six and two-thirds innings scattering six hits, one walk and striking out five. Another good sign he and the relievers didn’t give a home run in the game.

Speaking of home runs the Mariners started off well with Domingo Santana hitting a three-run homer in the first inning. It was the first of two home runs for him in the game. Daniel Vogelbach followed him with a home run as well. So after the first inning the Mariners were leading 4-0. A very good sign; they often win when scoring in the first inning.

The Mariners had three more runs in the fourth inning and one more in the sixth inning. The Royals had their runs in the third and seventh inning.

The Mariners’ bullpen did a fine job over the final two and one-thirds innings. The three relievers gave up one single and a walk. I feel nervous when the relievers come into the game even with a large lead.

Mallex Smith who has been hitting well lately led off the game with a double. JP Crawford walked before Santana’s home run. Santana was the only Mariner hitter with more than one hit. He had three hits including the two home runs. He drove in five of the Mariners eight runs.

The Mariners had ten hits in the game. Everyone in the starting lineup had a hit except for Dee Gordon; got to give him a break since he has done well as of late.

We just hope this offensive outpour in this game will go into the series against the Baltimore Orioles. The series starts Thursday so it is a four game series. It would be nice if the Mariners could win at least three if not sweep it. The Orioles is one of the worst teams in the majors so the possibility is here.

Wade LeBlanc is scheduled to start for the Mariners on Thursday night; however, the Mariners come go with an opener to start the game and bring LeBlanc in the second inning. Mike Leake is scheduled for Friday. All the starters except Gonzales will pitch in this series.

On the injury front Felix Hernandez MRI showed no additional injury to his shoulder. He will throw several bullpen sessions then go on a rehab assignment with Tacoma when he is ready. Sam Tuivailala who has been out all season and was shut down on previous rehab assignment is expected to pitch Friday at Everett. Hunter Strickland who was expected to come off the injured list initially on Wednesday has to wait now. He is expected to throw lightly on Friday. Not sure when he will return right now.

I am sure everyone is looking to see who and when the next trade by the Mariners will be. With Jerry Dipoto it isn’t a sure thing but something could happen soon or wait until July before the trading deadline. How many will be traded is a good question to. The most likely player is pitcher Mike Leake. Also, Tim Beckham and Dee Gordon could go as well. Not sure on either one of them. Beckham doesn’t have a large salary and might not get much in return. Gordon does have a large salary but the Mariners may want to keep him because of his energy levels. We will have to see. Go M’s.

Mariners Go 5-4 on Road Trip

The Seattle Mariners won 6-3 Sunday to take the series against the Oakland A’s 2-1, while at the same time going 5-4 on the nine game road trip.

While the Mariners were on the road they traded Edwin Encarnacion to the New York Yankees for a prospect and giving the Yankees in cash about half of Encarnacion salary. The Mariners activated JP Crawford off the injured list when arriving in Oakland. The Mariners sent Shed Long back to Tacoma. Also, reliever Brandon Brennan went on the disabled list as well after having another poor outing with shoulder problems. Depending on how he is doing should be back in a week. Matt Festa was recalled in his place.

Mike Leake had another outstanding game going seven innings giving up three runs with two being earned. He is another being rumored to be traded as well as Dee Gordon who played good on Sunday after missing Saturday because of his wrist.

Mallex Smith continues to hit well hitting a two-run homer in the second inning in the win over Oakland Sunday.

Austin Nola made his major debut on Sunday being called up from Tacoma with the trade of Edwin Encarnacion. News came out to that Ryon Healy will miss another three to four weeks so he won’t be traded any time soon. Nola has versatility where he can catch and play the outfield well as first base.

It will be interesting to see who the Mariners will trade next with the departure of Encarnacion. I would put my guess on Tim Beckham. He doesn’t have a large salary so moving him won’t cost as much for the Mariners. It might mean they may not get a very prospect either.

I will keep you up to date not only the games but what is happening off the field too. Go M’s.

Mariners Bullpen Can’t Do It Again

Going into the bottom of the sixth inning the Mariners had a chance to sweep the Minnesota Twins with the game tied at 1-1; however, they had to go to the bullpen which once again cost the Mariners the game. 

Yusei Kikuchi had a rough outing though he only gave up one run and that was to former Mariner Nelson Cruz who hit a home run in the third inning. Kikuchi had runners on base in almost every inning but was able to get out where the Twins couldn’t score. The Mariners relievers couldn’t do the same thing.

The Mariners tied the score in the top of the sixth inning but Brandon Brennan couldn’t hold the Twins at bay. The Twins had runners on first and third without an out. The batter was on a count of 2-2; all Brennan had to do was strike out the batter and get the other runner out on a double play. Even if he couldn’t do that the Twins could have had the runner on third score on a fly out or a ground ball out to second; instead Brennan tried to pick the runner off first but the ball went into the dirt so the runner scored from third and the other advanced. 

Brennan wasn’t able to get a single out and he was replaced by Corey Gearrin who didn’t do much better other than getting one out. When the sixth inning ended the Twins had scored six runs and they were ahead 7-1. Things didn’t get better where the Twins scored three more runs in the seventh inning which included a two-run homer by CJ Cron who has lived off Mariner pitching for years. He is another the Mariners should never pitch too. So that left the score 10-1 going into the eighth inning.

The hope for the Mariners was to see how many runs they could score in the last two innings since the Twins relievers aren’t much better than the Mariners. The Mariners scored two runs both in the eighth and ninth innings. The final was 10-5.

After the game, Brennan said that he had a fatigued and sore shoulder which isn’t really a surprise so he could be going on the ten-day injured list. We will know more sometime on Friday if that is the case. Whether it is an injury or not I would say add Brennan to the injury list. 

The Mariners are expected to reactivate JP Crawford on Friday before playing the Oakland A’s over the weekend. The Mariners have had success playing the A’s in Oakland so hopefully, it will happen again. The Mariners might make a couple moves with Crawford coming back and Brennan to the injured list. 

No news on the trading block but something could happen over the weekend or sometime soon. Just under seven weeks until the trading deadline on July 31. I am sure the Mariners will make at least a couple of transactions over this period. Go M’s. 

Mariners Relieved to Come Home

There wasn’t much positive on this last road trip since the Mariners lost all six games. They will be home for the next eleven games so hopefully, some good signs will come about.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Jerry Dipoto will make some changes to the roster including making at least one trade.  Edwin Encarnacion is the likely one to be traded because the Mariners might be able to get the most for him. It would be good to get a starting pitcher back for him along with a prospect or two. 

I was hoping to see this last road trip where the Mariners would go at least 3-3 instead of losing each one. They were doing so well against other teams with losing records, however, the Rangers and A’s are on an upswing. Of course, in part by playing the Mariners. The Rangers are 7-3 in their last ten games while the A’s are 9-1. Last year the A’s made their move around this time and once again are doing so. 

It would be nice if the Mariners can beat the Rangers at home well as the Los Angeles Angels. Outside of the Mariners the Angels are the other team with a losing record in the past ten games going 4-6. The only other American League team to go 1-9 like the Mariners is the Detroit Tigers.

Mike Leake continues to struggle on Sunday in the Mariners loss to the A’s 7-1. He pitched six and two-thirds innings. He only gave up three hits but two of them were home runs that gave the A’s three of the five runs against him. Wasn’t normal for Leake he walked three batters. For the Mariners to get back on track Leake along with Marco Gonzales who hasn’t won in May and Kikuchi who had a bad outing after pitching well before the Mariners need these three. 

It is hard though for the starters to do well when they have the pressure of having to be perfect when the offense isn’t working. The Mariners scored only eight runs in the three games. They have shown unless they score six runs or more in a game they probably won’t win and they haven’t done that often as of late.

It isn’t as though the Mariners haven’t hit the ball because they had 25 hits in the Oakland series just they left a lot of batters on base. Whether it is changing the lineup or not is the answer the point is they do need to score runs. 

It does come down to the pitching overall though. The position players Dipoto decides to trade they need to have pitching come back in return. I expect the hitting will come back even with the trading of some of the position players. I can see Jay Bruce and Tim Beckham both leaving before the trading deadline too. 

Tommy Milone will be going against the Texas Rangers Monday night. He had a good game against the Rangers last Tuesday in Arlington though the Mariners lost 5-3. A similar outing by Milone should nest a Mariner victory.  This week will be interesting for sure. Go M’s.

Mariners Swept By Rangers

The Mariners continued in there hitting slump on Wednesday afternoon losing 2-1. The problem wasn’t only the hitting but the defense still is a problem with the Mariners having two more errors in the game and only one of the runs was earned off Marco Gonzales who pitched a good game that he deserves to win. He is now 0-4 in the month of May. He should have one more shot to get a win in May.

Gonzales was able to go seven innings in the game giving up seven hits, one walk and striking out three. This allowed the Mariners to save the bullpen though they do have Thursday off before facing the A’s in Oakland on Friday.

The two newcomers to the Mariners bullpen faired well in this game. Jesse Biddle the lefty came first in the eighth inning. He gave up a hit, however, struck out a batter as well. Anthony Bass was able to get the final two outs of the eighth inning. Actually, a line drive was hit to him on one pitch that he was able to catch the runner at first base to complete a double play. 

The Mariners scored there only run in the seventh inning with back to back hits by Jay Bruce and JP Crawford. Catcher Omar Narvaez the Mariners hottest hitter had to leave the game in the 3rd inning because of a bruised knee when he was hit by a foul tip. He is listed day to day though he plans to play on Friday. We will have to see.

I am not sure why but in the 9th inning the Mariners had Tim Beckham still available on the bench but manager Scott Servais decided not to use him to pinch hit for either Dylan Moore who was playing third base or second baseman Shed Long. I would have used him pinch hitting for Dylan Moore. I have to figure Moore just came off the injured list and he isn’t hitting that well. I hope Servais does have an explanation for his action other than giving Beckham the whole game off. 

Yusei Kikuchi after his last spectacular start that happened to be the last game the Mariners won will take the mound on Friday in Oakland. Right now he is the Mariner’s best pitcher since Gonzales has struggled in May. The Mariners are undefeated against the A’s this season though a small sampling.  It would be nice if the Mariners could turn around and sweep the A’s. This would leave a road trip of 3-3. 

The Mariners right now are in last place a full game behind the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West division standings. The Mariners are 3-7 in there last ten games while the A’s are 7-3. So the series might be difficult in Oakland though the Mariners are undefeated on the season. 

The Oakland A’s seem to make there move at some point of the season so this could end up being difficult for the Mariners. This week the Mariners shook up their bullpen but they may have to make other changes especially with the hitting slump to get winning once again. Go M’s. 

Mariners End Horrid Road Trip

Sunday was another tough afternoon for the Mariners losing again and being swept by the Boston Red Sox 11-2. In the three-game series, the Mariners were outscored 34-8. It was no wonder they had to have more help in the bullpen which didn’t help at all really. 

Marco Gonzales started going four innings giving up four runs on four hits. Only two runs were earned which isn’t much more impressive. It rained the whole game so giving him some slack walking three batters. It was a good idea to get him out of the game with the weather conditions. All the Mariners needed was having Gonzales getting hurt.

Parker Markel called up on Saturday having to travel from Sea-Tac airport to Las Vegas then Atlanta then Boston arriving after 2 am along with being nervous on his major league debut gave up three hits and two runs in one inning replacing Gonzales. 

Dan Altavilla who returned to Seattle from double-A Arkansas didn’t do as well as Markel. Altavilla threw 31 pitches in a third of an inning giving up three runs on one hit. What made it worse he walked four batters. 

Monday I expect at least one transaction by the Mariners. Braden Bishop was optioned back to Tacoma so the Mariners don’t have a fourth outfielder though they could put Shed Long or Tim Beckham in the outfield if necessary so I expect Mallex Smith will return and Altavilla returning to the minor leagues.  I expect Markel will be around for a few more days anyway.

The Mariners will need to make a move when Felix Hernandez turn comes up again on Thursday. Since Felix went on the IL the Mariners will have to bring in another starter. The choice likely will be Wade LeBlanc coming off the injured list.

The Mariners are now 20-23, third place in the AL West a half-game behind the Los Angeles Angels and seven games behind division-leading Houston Astros. Amazing a change can happen after going 2-8 on the road trip.

The Mariners have had good success against teams with losing records. It may be a good thing they play 13 of their next 17 games against losing teams. All 13 games are against division foes so this could be good for them. 

The only team with a winning record is Minnesota Twins who they play four games against this coming Thursday thru Sunday. The Mariners first face Oakland for two then has Wednesday off which is what they need. 

I hope the Mariners can win at least ten of the next seventeen games. It will take the offense to come alive again and the pitching is decent if not spectacular. The starters will need to go at least six innings each so the bullpen doesn’t have to go too many innings.

We hope to see some good baseball for the rest of May. Go M’s.