Category Archives: Mariners

Mariners Acquire Kendrys Morales, Blow Minds, Collapse Dominoes

Kendrys+Morales+9GbJTssjTpCmOh snap, girl. You did NOT see that coming! Kendrys Morales returning to Seattle? Via trade? Say whaaaaaaaat?!

I know, I’m right there with you. The Mariners needed a middle-of-the-orderish bat, certainly, but after the team failed to ink Morales to a free agent deal after last season, no one suspected the 31-year-old designated hitter would suit up in a Seattle uniform in 2014.

Alas, Jack Zduriencik and the Mariners front office stick to what they know best. Aside from reacquiring Chone Figgins in some form or fashion, obtaining Morales from the Minnesota Twins is about as surprising a move as the organization could have made. With a plethora of other names being discussed as potential targets for the M’s, the switch-hitting Morales was seemingly overlooked all along.

Regardless of any additional trades the M’s make, this one deal alone will produce a bevy of repercussions that have short- and long-term impacts on the future of the club. Here’s a quick look at how Morales’s arrival will affect the team and its personnel.

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A Comprehensive List of Right-Handed Bats the Mariners Could Obtain

dayan-viciedoThe success of your 2014 Seattle Mariners has blown more than a few minds in recent weeks. The Twitter mesosphere, for one, has devolved into a cesspool of inane trade rumors (Nick Franklin in exchange for Superman, Jesus Christ, and your finest bottle of Veuve Clicquot) and constant bickering even in light of victory (We’re winning, but we’re not winning well enough…), which essentially means fans are excited about this ballclub once again.

That’s good news for everyone who considers him or herself a fanatic of the Mariners. The bulk of the past decade has been spent enjoying the equivalent of a two-month baseball season encompassing April and May. By June, the team’s prolific early-season failures usually allow apathy to creep in and spoil an entire summer’s worth of contests at Safeco Field. Whether or not this year is the year remains to be seen, but for now the M’s are at least maintaining a firm grip on the region’s interest.

The debates that have ensued over how this ragtag group of misfits (or something like that) can vault themselves into the postseason centers around a small handful of talking points, none more bandied about than the lineup’s need for a right-handed power bat.

The season-long disappointments of de facto designated hitter Corey Hart have put a spotlight on the middle of the batting order, a place not unlike the soft, fleshy underskin of one’s genital area, more commonly referred to as the “taint.” Hart, when healthy, has been Lord of the Taint, as evidenced by his unimpressive .203 batting average and .618 OPS. Time is running short for the 32-year-old to prove he belongs on a big league roster. In the interim, fans and pundits alike scour the internet for possible replacements.

The list of available right-handed bats is not pretty. You can blame the advent of the second Wildcard spot for the slim pickings, as any team with a .500 or better record remains in playoff contention. Of course, the second Wildcard spot in the American League currently belongs to the Mariners, so in some sense the second Wildcard giveth and the second Wildcard taketh away.

The following list of potential trade targets is culled from the active rosters of MLB teams with sub-.500 records, those that are generally considered to be out of postseason contention. This list only includes batters who can hit from the right side of the plate, but not does not include every right-handed or switch-hitting batter available. Rather, we’ve attempted to narrow it down to those right-handed hitters who meet at least some of the following criteria: proven major league hitter, “power” hitter (the term semi-loosely defined), tradeable commodity (the team that owns the player’s rights would have to be willing to trade the property), desirable commodity (the Mariners would have to be willing to acquire the property).

Without further ado, shield your eyes and allow us to introduce you to the men who could become your newest Seattle Mariners (listed alphabetically).

Name: Marlon Byrd

Team: Philadelphia Phillies

Position: OF

Bats-Throws: R-R

Age: 36

2014 Salary: $8 million

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Making Sense of the Mariners’ Pursuit of Pitching

SamardzijaAs reported by Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, it seems your Seattle Mariners are in hot pursuit of acquiring starting pitching on the trade market. This news has raised a few eyebrows around the Pacific Northwest, as it’s plainly evident that the team’s offense (ranked dead last in OPS in the American League) is in much greater need of a pick-me-up than the rotation (ranked first in Starting Pitcher WHIP in the American League). But before chastising the ballclub for favoring areas of strength over areas of weakness, let’s try to make some sense of what the M’s might be trying to achieve here.

For starters (pun intended), in spite of having assembled a rotation among the best in baseball, Mariners starting pitchers are staring down the barrel of a regression in the season’s second half. Without getting into too much detail surrounding the advanced metrics, fifth starter Chris Young has outperformed his career numbers, while de facto third starter Roenis Elias has logged more mileage on his left arm thus far than at any other point in his professional career. When it comes to Young, even a slight regression should be tolerable – his 1.17 WHIP currently ranks 10th among AL starting pitchers. But with Elias, there should be slightly more cause for concern.

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What’s Up With The Mariners’ Weird Hand Gestures?

millerdsd

If you’ve watched enough Mariners baseball this year, you’ve likely seen it. It starts with a base hit, then segues into a ritualistic celebration of sorts. An M’s hitter will stand perched atop the bag after a single, double, or triple, look towards the dugout, raise each semi-closed fist above his noggin, then move those fists side to side as his teammates sheltered along the baseline respond. But what does it all mean?

The move itself is one I like to call the “Double-Sack Dance.” It has origins in pornography (where all good things find their beginning), but has been popularized in mainstream movies, as well – most notably a scene in Superbad, among other works of fine film:

DoubleHJ

As you can see above, Jonah Hill might very well be to blame for bringing a variation of the Double-Sack Dance to the public spectrum.

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The Top 22 Mariners Promotional Ideas Gone Wrong

centerfield

It’s like two Top 11 lists in one!

22. Danny Farquhar Disappointing Growth Chart Day

Guess what, kids. You’re probably not going to grow to be 6’10” like Chris Young, or even 6’3” like Felix Hernandez. More than likely you’ll stand about 5’9” or so, which is both the average height of the American male and the exact listed height of reliever Danny Farquhar. We’re not here to lie to you or falsely inflate your hopes. Instead, we’ll just give you this disappointing Farquhar growth chart and watch you blossom into a really mediocre adult.

21. Cole Gillespie “Guess Which of These Guys Is Actually A Mariner” Night

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The 2014 Seattle Mariners Experience: Weeks 5-7 – Goodbye, Ineptitude

201405181540564464123For the Week 4 recap, click here.

Week 5

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 4-1

Overall Win-Loss Record: 14-15

Winning Percentage: .483

Division Standing: Fourth place

Week’s Opponents: New York Yankees (2 games) – Road; Houston Astros (3 games) – Road

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Buoyant

***

Week 6

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 5-3

Overall Win-Loss Record: 19-18

Winning Percentage: .514

Division Standing: Third place

Week’s Opponents: Oakland Athletics (4 games) – Road; Kansas City Royals (4 games) – Home

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Fabulous

***

Week 7

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 2-4

Overall Win-Loss Record: 21-22

Winning Percentage: .488

Division Standing: Third place, 6.5 games back

Week’s Opponents: Tampa Bay Rays (3 games) – Home; Minnesota Twins (3 games) – Road

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Bipolar

Since the last time I penned a recap column, the Mariners have somehow cobbled together a record of 11-8, meaning they don’t suck nearly as much as they did before. At a single game under .500, the ballclub has been very nearly the definition of average despite serious mood swings in achieving their current level of mediocrity.

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America’s Favorite Game Returns: A Mariners-Themed Edition of You Can Only Have One!

kate-upton-bed-640x423Welcome to You Can Only Have One! It’s America’s favorite game and soon to be your favorite, too!

For those who are new to You Can Only Have One! here’s how the game works. You will be presented with two different scenarios. You will have to decide which scenario you prefer, then act upon that very scenario. There are only two rules to follow in the process. Those rules are:

Rule 1.0 a. You cannot have neither.

Rule 36.5 b. You cannot have both.

Pretty simple, right? For a background on the origin of the game and its ancient Sri Lankan roots made popular in the good ol’ U-S-of-A by a Seattle-based radio talk show host, feel free to read more here.

For everyone else, allow me to introduce today’s theme. Today’s theme is … the Seattle Mariners. That’s right, folks. Every YCOHO scenario we present to you today will pertain to your Seattle Mariners. So whaddaya say? Ready to have some fun? Alright!

Now let’s play … You Can Only Have One!

***

YCOHO 1: Willie Bloomquist in your starting lineup every day OR a really bad sexual experience with Kate Upton that results in both of you crying tears of sadness and subsequently destroys any chance you have of ever getting with her again.

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The 2014 Seattle Mariners Experience: Week 4 – Kyle Seager Goes to Pound Town

seagerwalkoffFor last week’s recap, click here.

Week 4

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 3-3

Overall Win-Loss Record: 10-14

Winning Percentage: .417

Division Standing: Fourth place, 5.0 games back

Week’s Opponents: Houston Astros (3 games) – Home; Texas Rangers (3 games) – Home

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Bipolar

Pound Town. A quirky little hamlet with a mercurial population, Pound Town is a place people often go to have a great time. To many, Pound Town is simply the world’s greatest vacation spot for coitus. “Take your lady to Pound Town!” they’ll say. And they’re right, Pound Town does reside at the intersection of foreplay and intercourse.

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We Suck Again

2023429534Maybe it was erstwhile Mariners first-round pick Josh Fields, embattled former general manager Bill Bavasi’s last and most egregious high-profile draft selection, securing the nail in the M’s coffin by striking out the side in the ninth inning.

Maybe it was Dustin Ackley crashing into the left field wall while unsuccessfully pursuing a fly ball.

Maybe it was Stefen Romero crashing into the right field wall while unsuccessfully pursuing a fly ball, then later paying witness to an overzealous fan robbing him of an out – though in fairness, the fan displayed better hands than Romero.

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The 2014 Seattle Mariners Experience: Week 3

2023401660For last week’s recap, click here.

Week 3

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 1-6

Overall Win-Loss Record: 7-11

Winning Percentage: .389

Division Standing: Third place

Week’s Opponents: Texas Rangers (4 games) – Road; Miami Marlins (3 games) – Road

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: HOLY F@#K

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What The Hell Was That? Dissecting a Mariners Meltdown

Dumpster-FireLloyd McClendon emerged from the depths of Globe Life Park’s third base dugout and strode purposefully across the playing field. As they so often do when McClendon visits his pitcher, the entire Seattle infield converged upon the mound and their suddenly-embattled closer, Fernando Rodney.

Having recorded a pair of quick outs to the first two batters he faced in the bottom of the ninth, Rodney appeared on the verge of his fourth save of the season. But then the 37-year-old right-hander relinquished a single up the middle to Texas third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff. Minutes later, Rodney issued a walk to designated hitter Mitch Moreland. The tying run moved into scoring position. The winning run stood perched on first base. McClendon got up.

In all likelihood, the team’s first-year manager probably reminded his players that they needed just one more out to secure a victory, that they had a force available at any base, and that this was their game to win. But based on the events that immediately followed the brief get-together, McClendon may very well have said something along the lines of, “Guys, let’s do everything we can to fuck this up as spectacularly as possible.”

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The 2014 Seattle Mariners Experience: Week 2

eliasFor last week’s recap, click here.

Week 2

Week’s Win-Loss Record: 3-3

Overall Win-Loss Record: 7-5

Winning Percentage: .583

Division Standing: Second place

Week’s Opponents: Los Angeles Angels (2 games) – Home; Oakland Athletics (3 games) – Home; Texas Rangers (1 game of a 3-game series) – Road

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Alright, alright, alright

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Hector Noesi’s Eulogy

HectorNoesiHector Noesi is only 27 years of age, so in fairness his career might not be dead yet. But as a right-handed pitcher who reluctantly boasts a 5.64 career ERA, a trade to Texas and the Rangers’ hitter-friendly ballpark seems as close to capital punishment as Major League Baseball will allow. So in anticipation of Noesi’s impending demise, I offer up this preemptive eulogy to mark the brief life and times of Hector Noesi, professional baseball player.

Oh, Hector. Sweet, incompetent Hector. Your time with us was short, yet the impact will last a lifetime. You may be gone now, but you will never be forgotten. As a member of Seattle’s unofficial Ayala-Figgins Hall of Infamy, your legacy will live on for eternity. But before we bid adieu, let’s remember those special moments we shared together.

Acquired from the Yankees following the 2011 season, you came to Seattle touting a 95-mile-per-hour heater that convinced so many of us that you might just be something special. You were only 25 years old at the time, young and virile, with enough promise and potential to titillate more than a few onlookers who wanted so badly to believe in you.

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The 2014 Seattle Mariners Experience: Week 1

canoYou don’t want to read about the Mariners every single day. It’s not good for your health. For the same reasons, no one really wants to write about the Mariners every single day, either. Frankly, if someone were to chronicle their thoughts on the M’s on a repeating 24-hour basis, the log of emotions would read like a crazy person’s diary. For evidence of this, go scour my Twitter account at any point in time.

To combat the daily bipolarity of the baseball team you and I choose to both love and hate, we here at Seattle Sportsnet have decided to bring you a comprehensive week-to-week recap of the 2014 Mariners experience, which in itself is sure to be a roller coaster ride of emotional proportions. While we’ll fill the remaining days of each week with more pointed discussion of the M’s – trade suggestions, Hector Noesi minor league updates, Top 11 lists, half-brained promotional ideas, et cetera – you can count on this weekly look at the team to quench your thirst for all things Seattle baseball.

Without further introduction, let’s get to the update.

Week 1

Win-Loss Record: 4-2

Winning Percentage: .667

Division Standing: First place

Week’s Opponents: Los Angeles Angels (3 games) – Road; Oakland Athletics (3 games) – Road

Playoff Status: Not mathematically eliminated

Team Morale: Decent

What the hell is going on? That’s a question many of us were asking ourselves on Wednesday evening, shortly after the Mariners completed a season-opening three-game sweep of the Angels. The Angels were supposed to be okay. The M’s were supposed to be less than okay. All things considered, a trio of wins for the boys in blue was wholly unanticipated.

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Welcome to Spring Training

It’s not baseball season until a photo of chubby Jesus Montero chasing chubby running girl appears on the internet. Go Mariners.

monterogirl

*Montero photo courtesy Ryan Divish. Everything else courtesy Google Images and Seattle Sportsnet.

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