The Mariners on a Roll

The Seattle Mariners are now on a three game winning streak beating the Tigers in Detroit twice after losing Felix and Haniger for three to four weeks along with a loss of 19-9.

The last two games were both close games. Friday’s game against the Indians in Cleveland the Mariners won 3-1. This now makes the Mariners record 11-13 which is a lot more reasonable that is for sure. The Mariners are showing that they can compete with those in the American League Central Division. We hope that they can do the same with the American League Western Division when they return home next week.

The Mariners got their three runs on a two-run homer by Robinson Cano and a solo homer by Ben Gamel. The Mariners defense in the outfield continues to shine. They have had instances where they have held the opposition to a single instead of a double. We are being showed a lot better defense over last year.

Ariel Miranda bounced back in this game giving up two hits and one run in five and a third inning. He was replaced by rookie lefty James Pazos who went two and a third innings giving up two hits and striking out four. He gave up one of the hits with two outs in the eighth inning when Edwin Diaz came in for the second game in a row to close off the game. Diaz faces four hitters and striking out three of them. The one he did not strike out was a high pop up to Kyle Seager on a 3 and 1 pitch in the ninth inning for the second out in the game. It is nice to see Diaz get in some game action since prior to Thursday he hadn’t pitched a lot for a couple weeks.

Steve Cishek is now doing his pitching rehab with the Tacoma Rainiers. He will likely pitch at least a couple times with them before being called up to the Mariners.

Yovani Gallardo will go for the Mariners on late Saturday afternoon game in Detroit followed by Chase De Jong who has replaced Felix in the rotation for the time being. Servais felt that De Jong deserve the start since he went four innings last Saturday in relief giving up one hit and no runs. The Mariners lost the game to the A’s however De Jong gave the offense a chance to win.

Depending on how De Jong pitches I would not be surprised to see lefty Dillon Overton pitch a couple innings as well. He was brought back up by the Mariners on Wednesday after the blow out on Tuesday 19-9. The Mariners brought right handed reliever Chris Fien the same day and sent back Chris Heston and Evan Marshall to Tacoma after both pitched in the blow out game. Also Ben Gamel was brought up because Haniger and Felix were put on the DL.

The Mariners will start May by playing the Los Angeles Angels and the Texas Rangers at Safeco Field. They will than go on the road for two in Philadelphia and four in Toronto. Hopefully Felix and Haniger will both be ready when the Mariners return home for the next home series against the Oakland A’s and the Chicago White Sox’s. Go M’s.

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Marines Lose Two Players and More

Where do we start with losing two players in the first game in Detroit on Tuesday night or losing another game? Not a good sign either way that is for sure.

We will start with the game in itself. The Mariners lost the game 19-9. Not much more we can say about that however the worst part of it Felix Hernandez had to leave the game after two innings because of a dead arm. At least that is the story after the game. In the third inning the Mariners lost outfielder Mitch Haniger trying to dive back to first base. He had to leave the game because of his strained oblique muscle. He said after the game he had problems with it for a couple days and was working on it in a preventive way. He was hoping that working on the injury at that time would not get him into trouble however it didn’t happen. The sad part besides the injury Haniger was playing the best baseball of anyone on the team.

Felix and Haniger both flew back to Seattle to see the team doctor. Sometime Wednesday the team and we will know how bad it will be for both of them; we know that Haniger will go on the disabled list however with Felix it hard to know. He could miss one turn in the rotation or be out for some time as well.

Only positive of the pitching was the Mariners only used four relief pitchers in the game. The negative was three of the four got shelled. Chris Heston came in to pitch first to replace Felix since he is the long reliever. He replaced Chase De Jong who pitched well on Saturday going four innings and giving up only one hit along with no runs. He looks like the guy who could come up to replace Felix. Heston if he could have resembled De Jong in any manner the Mariners could have won the game however he gave up five runs on seven hits including two home runs in two innings. He was replaced by Evan Marshall who came up last week in place of Dan Altavilla who was sent down to Tacoma to work on his slider and spotting his fast ball. He didn’t do any better than Heston giving up seven runs on seven hits and three walks in two innings. Two of the hits were doubles.

Rookie lefty James Pazos came in for Marshall and pitched one inning. At that point the score was 16-7. He was the only good pitcher on Tuesday night going one inning giving up one hit and a walk with no runs scored. He was followed up by Evan Scribner who pitched the eighth inning. He gave up three runs on four hits including a home run and a double. Scribner who pitched well last September after coming off the disabled list and not pitching up to that point; he has done poorly most of April so far. I wonder if he has injury himself.

So will any of those three Heston, Marshall or Scribner last beyond today? We know that at least one pitcher will be recalled on Wednesday if not more along with a regular player. We will have to see how the rest of the roster will react with the loss of Felix and Haniger. This will show how tough they are and how they will show on the final five games on the road. Hopefully no other injuries will occur. Go M’s.

Mariners Take One in Oakland Other Notes

 

The Seattle Mariners finally won a game in Oakland against the A’s. The final score was 11-1 on Sunday after losing the previous three games. Taylor Motter who will go back to being the utility player hit a grand slam for Mariners and then Nelson Cruz hit a three-run homer to put the game out of the reach. It would have been nice if the Mariners offense could have saved a few runs for another game.

Saturday the Mariners had a chance to win the game. Chase De Jong who the Mariners brought up to replace Dan Altavilla temporarily pitched four innings in place of starter Ariel Miranda who was struggling early in the game. De Jong came in the fourth inning to replace Miranda. He only gave up one hit and then was sent back down on Sunday. Chris Heston was brought up for the Mariners to have another fresh arm to pitch long relief. The Mariners do have an off day on Monday before starting a three game series on Tuesday in Detroit against the Tigers. The Mariners are expected to add Steve Cishek in the next few days for the bullpen. At that point Heston probably be sent back to Tacoma.

The biggest news of the day that came as a surprise to everyone was the designated for assignment of center fielder Leonys Martin. The Mariners can’t directly send Martin down to the minor leagues so the reason for the dfa. If he is not picked up on waivers or traded the Mariners than can send him to Tacoma to get his hitting back on track. He has a contract for over $4 million so likely another team will not pick him up for the full amount. If the Mariners do trade him than likely they will probably have to pay a partial of the contract. There are several teams that do need an outfielder but not at that amount.

Yovani Gallardo had his best game pitching for the Mariners. He pitched six and one-third innings give up only four hits. Gallardo has had some good years pitching in the major leagues especially for the Milwaukee Brewers however he had a bad season last year and for the reason why the Baltimore Orioles were willing to trade him. In the other games for the Mariners he did pitch well at times just had a bad inning. The Mariners are hoping this will start to better things for Gallardo.

In regards to Miranda he had a poor game hitting his spots and why he lasted only three games. The Mariners are hoping working with him he will be straighten back for them.

Now the Mariners need to see if there are any other measures they must do to get going on the road. Now they are 2-9 in road games while being 6-3 at home. They are tied with the Los Angles Angels in last place with a record of 8-12.

The Mariners will start Felix Hernandez in the first game against the Tigers followed by James Paxton and Iwakuma. Felix did struggle in his last outing though the Mariners lost. Paxton had his worst outing pitching against the A’s in the opening game in Oakland. Iwakuma pitched Ok however the Mariners lost his game too.

The Mariners figure to have Jean Segura back on Tuesday to play shortstop. I am sure he will go back to being the lead-off batter since Mitch Haniger has done such a good job batting second in the order. Jarrod Dyson who likely will play a lot in center field for the time being will go back to the bottom of the batting order. Taylor Motter who did an excellent job for Segura will play a lot at different positions. He will probably play some left field along with first base depending on whether Danny Valencia can start hitting or not. In the move with Martin the Mariners brought up first baseman Daniel Vogelbach. The Mariners likely will platoon Vogelbach with Valencia or Motter. According to manager Scott Servais we will see a lot of Motter in the lineup. Also Guillermo Heredia who played a lot against the Oakland A’s will play a lot in left or center field. Against tough lefties especially Heredia could play center with Motter in left. He will play left field when Dyson is in the lineup and Motter isn’t in left.

Kyle Seager missed the last two games because of a sore hip. He is expected back in the lineup on Tuesday however if he isn’t ready to go we will likely see Motter at third base. Michael Freeman who played third base the last two days will probably be sent back to Tacoma with Segura added back to the roster. We hope that Segura will hit like he did before going on the disabled list. He played the weekend of AA Arkansas while on a rehab assignment.

At this point there hasn’t been any news about utility player Shawn O’Malley. He can come off the list anytime however likely will do a rehab assignment himself. When that will happen is anyone’s guess since Dipoto or Servais hasn’t mentioned it. Also there is no news about reliever Shae Simmons when he will come off the disabled list either. He most likely goes on a rehab assignment as well. Both O’Malley and Simmons could be assigned to Tacoma after the rehab assignment as well. So more questions are ready to be answered for the Mariners however the best answer is for the Mariners to start winning on the road. If the problem continues more transactions will probably happen. In the meantime go M’s.

 

Mariners Lose First Two on Current Road Trip

The Seattle Mariners are starting off their second road trip like they did starting the season where they won only one game.

The Mariners are playing a four game series in Oakland before going to Detroit and Cleveland for three each before coming home. The Mariners have lost the two games in Oakland with two remaining. The two games were different from each other. The Mariners lost the first game 9-6 on Thursday where James Paxton had his first poor outing. The difference in the game happened in the seventh inning when Dan Altavilla gave up a three run homer. On Friday the Mariners announced that they were sending Altavilla down to triple A Tacoma to get things straightened out with his slider and fastball. I would not be surprised if he is back up again in the near future if he is able to correct them. In the meantime the Mariners recalled pitcher Chase De Jong from Tacoma to take his place. Most likely De Jong will only be up for a few days. He has been used as a starter in Tacoma and was supposed to start Friday’s game when he was summoned to Seattle. Most likely he will be used either in long relief or clean-up at the end of the game if he pitches at all for the Mariners. Steve Cishek currently is doing a rehab assignment with Tacoma. The Mariners are expected to activate him in a few days and then De Jong will return to Tacoma.

Friday’s game Iwakuma pitched for the Mariners for five and a third inning. Though he pitched a better game than his last outing he was recorded with the loss. He gave up two home runs in the game. In his history I see that most of the runs that Iwakuma gives up are the home run variety.

The Mariners one run came in the third inning off of a triple. I am sure everyone can guess who got the triple in the game. No other than right fielder Mitch Haniger who continues to be the Mariners best player so far and I am not sure what else we can say about him.

The Mariners chore players in the middle of the lineup have been Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seager however Mitch Haniger along with Taylor Motter are giving consideration to be added on along with Jean Segura when he comes off the disabled list. Nice to have a good set of players to depend on and now the Mariners need to get Leonys Martin to get out of his offensive slump along with Danny Valencia and Mike Zunino.

Speaking of Zunino he has had a few times hitting doubles however he hasn’t hit any home runs as of yet. On Friday night he was supposed to have started the game however the Mariners replaced him with backup catcher Carlos Ruiz. There was no known reason why Ruiz replaced Zunino because he is healthy. The Mariners do play a Saturday afternoon game so the coaching staff may have decided to have him start on Saturday instead. I am sure we will know more especially when the Mariners announce their starting lineup for the game.

Coming off his best outing of the season Ariel Miranda will start Saturday’s game. The Mariners will need another good game pitched by Miranda to stop this two game losing streak. On Sunday Gallardo is expected to start once again for the Mariners. Felix then will start the first game in Detroit. We hope that the Mariners can turn things around Saturday. Go M’s.

Mariners Overcome Slow Start Wednesday

King Felix had a slow start to Wednesday afternoon’s game against the Miami Marlins at Safeco Field. He gave up a couple runs in the first inning however he could have given more away. The Mariners did get a run themselves that inning and then scored two runs in the second to take the lead temporarily at that point. The Marlins scored another run in the third inning to tie the game however the Mariners scored another run in the bottom of the third to take the lead for good. The biggest inning was the fourth inning which was lead off by Zunino being hit by a pitch. Each inning for the Mariners seemed long so Felix had a lot of rest between innings. It may have been part of the reason he struggled all day. He lasted just over six inning and giving up four runs. He may have given up more runs in the process to since he did struggle however got out without a lot of damage.

Wednesday’s game was the worst that Felix pitched so far this year however the Mariners were able to score eight of their ten runs while he was pitching. Most often the Mariners struggle to score runs when Felix is on the mound however they are usually in games where he pitches his best games. This was his worst outing so far this season. We hope that he rebounds in his next outing.

Again Mitch Haniger had a great game getting three hits in four at bats plus a walk. He scored three of the Mariner runs well as driving in four. At this point he is playing the best ball of the Mariner regulars. Another one who had a good game was Kyle Seager who drove in four runs on two hits. Both Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz had two hits in the game. Cano scored two times while Cruz scored once.

The Mariners showed in this game once again that they can score runs without hitting a home run. This time they had four doubles each by Zunino, Cruz, Seager and Haniger. Though they had no stolen bases they still showed speed on the base paths.

Fans were able to give a good applause to Ichiro in his last at-bat in Safeco Field by hitting a home run in the top of the ninth inning for the Marlins last run score. Most likely it will be Ichiro’s last time at least this year unless the Marlins and the Mariners face each other in the World Series. Odds against it but you never know.

James Paxton will face the A’s tonight in Oakland. A good way to start the road trip for the Mariners starting off with Paxton; hopefully this will be a better road trip than the one starting the season where the Mariners went 1-6.

This new road trip will be for ten games. After facing the A’s in Oakland for four games the Mariners will play three against the Detroit Tiger and the Cleveland Indians. Last year the Mariners played well in Oakland so it would be nice if they could go 3-1. If they are able to split the games in Detroit and Cleveland the Mariners will come home with a road record of 6-4. Also would leave them with an even record of 13-13 for the month of April.

The Mariners next home stand will be May 2 thru 7 playing three against both the Los Angeles Angels and the Texas Rangers. This road trip and next home stand will tell us more on how the Mariners will do for the time ahead. Go M’s.

Mariners Almost No-Hit

The Seattle Mariners were shut-out by the Miami Marlins in the second game of the series on Tuesday night. Lefthander Chen pitched seven innings giving up no runs however walked two batters. He left the game because he had thrown one hundred pitches. Later in the season he likely would have pitched a complete game unless he had given up the one hit.

Mitch Haniger who has lived up to his billing before spring training got the only hit of the game for the Mariners a double in the bottom of the ninth inning. Haniger has been the best player for the Mariners since Jean Segura went on the disabled list.

Gallardo who started for the Mariners gave up four runs in six innings including a two-run homer by Bourn in the third inning. The Marlins got a run in both the first and second inning before Bourn’s homer. They scored their final run in the top of the ninth inning. It will be interesting to see how many more starts Gallardo will have for the Mariners before they bring in another starter to pitch. At least on the bright spot the other four starters have been pitching fairly well though Iwakuma had a bad outing on Sunday.

Ariel Miranda who pitched well against the Marlins in the Mariners win on Monday looks like he will be staying in the rotation for the time being. If he continues pitching the way he is when Drew Smyly returns sometime in June the Mariners may leave him in the rotations. A lot depends on Gallardo or who replaces him. Having a third lefty in the starting rotation may be OK with the Mariners too. This could depend on who the Mariners face as well. For example if Miranda and Smyly were both in the rotation the Mariners most likely would not want both facing the same time. In that instance either Miranda or Smyly could go to the bullpen temporarily and a right hander replaces them. We won’t worry about until the time comes.

According to manager Scott Servais when Segura returns from the disabled list at the end of the week that Taylor Motter will still see a lot of action for the Mariners. Most likely we will see him playing outfield and first base. He will face left handers in the outfield and could play first base against right handers. Valencia who has started most games has been having trouble hitting in April though he has been doing better lately. He has been a better hitter against left handers than right handers. Defensively I would say that Valencia and Motter are equal at first base.

When Segura returns from the disabled list most likely Michael Freeman will be sent back to Tacoma unless Servais and Dipoto feel that they can go with seven pitchers in the bullpen.

The Mariners play an afternoon on Wednesday before going to Oakland to take on the A’s in a four game series. King Felix will be starting Wednesday’s game. Also nice that James Paxton will start the first game of the road trip on Thursday. He has been pitching so outstanding and was named American League player of the week. The last time a Mariner had a left handed pitcher being named player of the week was almost twenty years ago. Go M’s.

Mariners Sweep Rangers

Having gone 2-8 in their first ten games there was not a better time for the Mariners to sweep the Rangers. The first two games of the series was great pitching by King Felix and James Paxton. The third game on Sunday was started by Iwakuma however he didn’t pitched so well himself giving up six runs in six innings fortunately the hitting and defense picked the team up.

Sunday’s game was very much different than the twelve games the Mariners had played this season. This game the Mariners had to come back a couple times to win the game in the ninth inning. Rookie right field Mitch Haniger had to be the player of the game by far. He had a home run his fourth of the season early in the game and then later on made an outstanding catch stealing a home run that likely would have given the Rangers the victory. In the ninth inning closer Edwin Diaz gave up a home run with the tie score. Haniger came up to bat with the bases loaded and had the patience to walk again to tie the game again. Two batters later Nelson Cruz hit an infield hit toward the shortstop however was not able to get an out that allowed the winning run.

This week the Mariners will be playing three games at home against the Miami Marlins before going back on the road. It will be interesting to find out Monday night how much Sunday’s game will play a role in this series. The Mariners are now 5-8 on the series and have moved ahead of the Rangers in the standings. This game could make the whole difference in the season. The Mariners will have Ariel Miranda going Monday for the Mariners followed by Gallardo and finish up with Felix Hernandez on Wednesday afternoon game. We know that Miranda and Gallardo both have struggled at times so far. These two games could turn out similar to Sunday’s game. Other than closer Edwin Diaz who gave up the tying home run in the ninth inning the bullpen pitched a good game. In fact since manager Scott Servais said early in the week that they will go with matchups the bullpen has done a good job. Edwin Diaz will continue as closer for the time being.

In other news Tony Zych made his Mariner debut on Sunday and Steve Cishek is going out on a rehab assignment to the Mariners double-A team in Arkansas. He may be back with the Mariners when they go on the road. Jean Segura could be back at shortstop on Friday. Taylor Motter has done a fine job as his replacement. It will be interesting to see how much playing time he will continue when Segura returns. First baseman Danny Valencia is starting to heat up however Motter could play some time there well as in the outfield. I would not be surprised if Motter may play some left field against left handed pitchers while Heredia is in at center field. This will depend on whether Leonys Martin’s bat heats up or stays cold. One thing we do know Mitch Haniger will stay in the lineup as long as he continues to play the way he has. Go M’s.