Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Trying a Low-blog Diet
Blogging will be less frequent the next couple of weeks as the Wheelhouse sets course for two weeks on Kaua‘i. I intend to sit on a beach, drink rum-POG, and enjoy some Anne Ursu, Sara Paretsky, and V.S. Naipaul.
And collect my thoughts on Edgar's retirement announcement.
There's No Clever Title Possible for This News
During last night's game we also learned that Soriano has a torn elbow ligament and will probably require Tommy John surgery. Meanwhile, Guardado has a torn rotator cuff. It could be worse, I suppose. When Guardado was diagnosed with "dead arm", I figured he had dreaded Meche disease, the torn or frayed labrum.
I've said pretty much everything I think I can say or need to say about the Mariners ineptitude in protecting pitchers arms. There is a link to my principal rant near the top of the right sidebar.
Tonight I simply wonder why it took almost five months to diagnose Soriano. And we can now add Soriano to the long list of top Mariners pitching prospects who have blown out an arm or a shoulder.
As I've mentioned before, Mommas, don't let your babies grow up to become Mariners pitchers. It's not healthy.
Regular Wheelhouse readers know that my heart has been stolen by a Batgirl (the Mariners Wheelhouse officially endorsed Twins blogger). Several weeks ago I lamented that she didn't even know I existed. Now, though, not only has she noticed us peering at her through our scope, she even semaphored back. It's enough to make us drop our sextants.
Batgirl has often helped us weather the stormy seas of this baseball season. I suppose that at times such as this, when the Twins and the Mariners share the same field and Eddie doesn't have enough itching powder to go around, that differences are inevitable.
But readers, I must sadly report there is now tension in our relationship with Batgirl. It is strained beyond just the ordinary stresses of on-field rivalry. For Batgirl is verging on blasphemy ! Accusing Edgar of showing off? Indeed!! Woman, have you no shame, no shame at all??
Even if you are beyond redemption, then think of the Batkitties. Go too far, Batgirl, and the Batkitties might find that salmon is no longer delivered to the Bathouse. I know it's not fair to punish innocents, but some people can only be pushed so far.
Perfect eloquence. Pure elegance.
I think most of us are simultaneously awed by and envious of those people who continually do the exact proper thing at the precise opportune moment. We see those people, and content ourselves knowing that we have seen the best at their finest.
So it is with Edgar. His first at bat after announcing his retirement. Standing ovation from the crowd. Two-run jack to give the Mariners a lead in the bottom of the first.
Perfect eloquence. Pure elegance.
Two batters after Edgar, Bucky Jacobsen has a two-run shot of his own, and the Mariners have a 4-0 lead. It sure is easier scoring runs when you don't need three hits to bring one runner around. But after the first inning it's typical Mariners inability to add to a lead. Meche, though, continues to put his career back together, limiting the Twins to two solo home runs. Putz gives up another solo in the ninth, and the Mariners come out on top 4-3.
A couple of weeks ago I commented on how Madritsch's demeanor changed in the middle of a game. In the span of one or two pitches, it seemed as though Madritsch discarded his jitters and started acting as if he owned the mound and the hitters were mere annoyances.
So it seemed with Meche. I didn't catch the game until the fifth inning, but when I tuned in Meche's body language and attitude on the mound was totally different than it had been earlier in the season. Tonight he was walking around on the mound as if it was his territory.
Facing Mulholland, this was probably the Mariners best chance to take at least one game in this series and they did. Tonight's game is Madritsch vs. Radke. That should be a good matchup. If I were around, though, the game I would want to catch is Thursday's, when Santana (Batgirl's #1 Twins hottie) is on the mound for the Twins. Santana may be the best pitcher in the American League right now. Of course, if the Mariners were to lose, there is no better team to lose to than the Twins, the #2 team of Mariners Wheelhouse (distant though they be behind the Mariners).
Tuesday, August 10, 2004
Apparently Baek is being sent down, and Bocachica is being recalled. David Cameron (USS Mariner, first post on August 10) notes that Baek was not up long enough for this to count as an option year for Baek.
Winn continues to show he is a center fielder in name only, with his latest gaffe giving Tampa Bay an extra run in the sixth inning of Sunday's game. With Tino Martinez on second, Upton singled to center. Maybe prankster Guardado slipped a Mickey in Winn's Gatorade during the top of the sixth, because something caused Winn to think he had a center fielder's arm and make a play at home on Martinez. Winn makes the deep throw to home, throwing the ball on the move, which is never a good idea for Winn. But, come to think of it, throwing after he sets up doesn't work very well for Winn, either.
Of course, the play on Martinez isn't close, and Winn's long rainbow toss allows Upton to take second. With the arc on Winn's throw, the only thing he had any chance of putting out were unwary pigeons hiding in the Trop Field rafters. Sanchez then singles to score Upton from second ahead of Fordyce's fly out. So Winn's play cost a run, putting the Mariners down two runs at the end of the sixth. Winn should be happy he didn't do that while playing for Lou.
So, if having Bocachica up means that Winn sees less time in center, that's a good thing.
Finally, a shocking note for all Bloomquist fans (all six of you). Tom at Mariners Analysis provides a summary from an interview with Bloomquist on KJR this morning. According to Tom's notes, Bloomquist has concluded that he doesn't have any future with the Mariners beyond that of a utility player, and, if he want's to play everyday, he will probably need to move to a different club.
Monday, August 09, 2004
Edgar to Announce His Retirement??
Edgar will make a "major announcement" at 2:30 this afternoon.
Update: Edgar does announce that this will be his last season. I need several days to think about this before I post about it.
Popping the Clutch
As Rick Rizzs and Dave Hendu-Valle like to remind us, Scott Spiezio is one of the top clutch hitters in baseball. Never mind the batting average, Spiezio gets his hits when they are most needed.
Well, let's check Spiezio's hitting in various situations this season to see:
|None On and None Out||0.234||0.337||0.325||0.662|
|None On, 1 or 2 out||0.226||0.280||0.366||0.646|
|Men On, 2 out||0.130||0.203||0.259||0.462|
|Man on 3rd, <2 out||0.190||0.185||0.333||0.518|
|Scoring Posn, 2 out||0.121||0.237||0.152||0.389|
There you go - that's one of the best clutch hitters in baseball