Week 18 Recap
|Date||Away Team||Score||Home Team||Score||Result|
The Mariners started the week with a tough series in Boston against one of the best teams in the AL. A sweep later and the Mariners were off to Baltimore. The last two games in the Boston series were particularly frustrating losses; our #1 and #2 starters didn’t factor into either decision and both were walk-off losses, one in the fifteenth and one in the ninth. After losses like that, you might expect a disheartened team to throw in the towel against a good Baltimore team but the Mariners bounced back and scored 19 runs in three games against the Orioles, winning two of three.
Today, the results of the Biogenesis investigation were announced and thirteen players were suspended, including Alex Rodriguez for all of 2013 and 2014, Nelson Cruz, Jhonny Peralta, and our own Jesus Montero for the rest of 2013. I don’t want to comment to much on the situation because there are so many others who have already voiced their opinions. I will say that Jesus Montero has has pretty disappointing year between failing to stick in the majors, injuring his knee, and now being suspended for 50 games. We can hope that he is able to turn it around in 2014 but I get the feeling that Jesus Montero has driven himself out of a job with the Mariners.
Player Performances One of the features I’m including is a look at the recent player performances from the past two weeks. That small of a sample size will give us some pretty extreme data points. If you want to see the methodology behind these statistics, check out this page. The two tables below are the batting and pitching data from the last two weeks (7/15-7/28).
- Kendrys Morales was on fire this week. At one point he had eight hits in consecutive at-bats and finished the week with a .577 average. Despite all of the hits, he didn’t take a single walk and had only two extra-base hits. Morales currently has a 132 wRC+, 28th in the league and seventh best for a first baseman. Bring him back for 2014!
- Michael Saunders has woken from his slumber (slump). Since the All-Star break, he’s slashed .280/.393/.600 with four home runs. The most encouraging thing has been the discipline he’s shown at the plate, which never really went away during his slump. Even though his strikeout rate is high (26.4%), his walk rate is a healthy 11.3%. As long as he’s able to get on base consistently, he should be an above average player. He’s a prime example of the value of OBP versus AVG. He will probably never hit higher than .275 because of his strikeout rate but getting on base and hitting for power more than make up for it. When he’s driving the ball to all fields, which he’s doing now, he’s really fun to watch too.
|Hisashi Iwakuma||11 2/3||54||13/4||0.00/1.90||24.1/21.3||7.4/7.9||0.0/9.3||14.5|
|Joe Saunders||15 2/3||78||12/7||6.89/5.40||15.4/17.5||9.0/8.3||18.8/13.2||-15.1|
|Erasmo Ramirez||17 2/3||74||16/4||5.60/4.91||21.6/20.7||5.4/7.4||14.8/12.2||-2.1|
|Lucas Luetge||5 2/3||25||1/5||3.18/5.39||4.0/17.2||20.0/9.0||0.0/10.4||-0.1|
|Oliver Perez||2 2/3||17||4/1||20.26/6.10||23.5/20.2||5.9/7.9||20.0/11.8||-2.4|
|Charlie Furbush||6 1/3||28||7/6||2.84/5.78||25.0/20.8||21.4/9.3||16.7/11.8||-8.2|
- Tom Wilhelmsen might have had his last meltdown as the closer for the Mariners this week. After coming in with a hefty lead on Thursday, he allowed all four batters he faced to reach base and all four eventually scored. It looks like Danny Farquhar will be given the reigns as closer for the time being and some smart people are pretty excited. After a rough beginning to the year, Farquhar has really developed into a shutdown reliever. He hasn’t allowed a run in his last seven outings and his strikeout rate is through the roof at 36.1%, good for seventh in the majors. What’s most interesting is Farquhar’s evolution the last two years. When he was with the Blue Jays and the Yankees, he was a side-armer who mixed a two-seam fastball and a slider in the mid-80’s and topped out at 90 MPH. Since being traded from the Yankees (for Ichiro no less), he’s now throwing over the top and regularly hitting the mid-90’s with his fastball and now throws a curve in the low-80’s. That’s a pretty dramatic transformation and the results have proven his success. I’m excited to see where he goes and how he continues to develop. It’s a good thing too because Carter Capps is broken (can’t strike anyone out anymore) and Stephen Pryor was recently shut down for the rest of the season.
AL West Standings
The Rangers had a great week, sweeping the Angels and winning two of three against the Athletics, closing the gap to 2.5 games behind in the division and just a half a game back for a Wild Card spot. After being swept, the Angels took three of four against the Blue Jays to close to within a half game of the Mariners for third place in the division.
The Week Ahead
|Date||Away Team||Probable Pitcher||Home Team||Probable Pitcher|
|8/5||Blue Jays||R R.A. Dickey||Mariners||R Hisashi Iwakuma|
|8/6||Blue Jays||R Josh Johnson||Mariners||R Felix Hernandez|
|8/7||Blue Jays||Mariners||R Aaron Harang|
|8/9||Brewers||Mariners||R Erasmo Ramirez|
|8/10||Brewers||Mariners||L Joe Saunders|
|8/11||Brewers||Mariners||R Hisashi Iwakuma|
The Mariners return home for a six-game homestand against the Blue Jays and the Brewers. This will be the first time the Brewers have played in Seattle since 1997, and the first time they’ve played at Safeco Field ever. After all the hype during the offseason, the Blue Jays have disappointed and are sitting in last place in the hyper-competitive AL East division. The Brewers have also been a disappointment and their star player, Ryan Braun, was recently suspended for the rest of the season as a part of the ongoing Biogenesis investigation.