Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category



June 15, 2008

As of June 15th, the Seattle Mariners are 21-45. They have an impressive three wins since 6/1, and are headed for their second straight twenty-loss month. In honor of this achievement, I thought we might check out where various other teams were after 66 games. Each team’s final record is in paranthesis.

The 2004 Mariners (63-99): 28-38

The 2007 Mariners (88-74): 35-31

The 2001 Mariners (116-46): 52-14

The 1998 Yankees (114-48): 49-17

The 2003 Tigers (43-119): 17-49

The 2004 Diamondbacks (51-111): 27-39

The 2002 Devil Rays (55-106): 22-44

The 1992 Mariners (64-98): 29-37

The 1980 Mariners (59-103): 29-36


Oh Fox News!

June 11, 2008
Whenever I think they can’t get any outrageous, they go and out-do themselves. This is sexist AND racist. All at once! Well played, FNC.








Go Rays

June 5, 2008
The Seattle Mariners are on pace to become the first team in baseball history to have both a payroll over $100M and 100+ losses on the season.
The Mariners spent four of their first five picks of today’s amateur draft selecting relievers. Relief pitchers are the one single position the organization already had an abundance of talent of.
They were swept by an Angels team this week despite Lopez having 3 HR, RA Dickey being awesome, Erik Bedard starting a game, and the Angels playing all three games without John Lackey, Kelvim Escobar, and Vlad Guerrero.
Beltre has publicly stated that he does not plan on resigning with the team.
They gave away Cha Seung Baek to the Padres for next to nothing.
They refuse to start Brandon Morrow.
The team literally does not believe in the merits of modern metrics for judging talents’ defense.
Jose Vidro and Richie Sexson still have jobs.
Miguel Cairo: An improvement over Richie Sexson at 1B.
Jose Vidro: Deemed by the team’s management to be a better option at DH than Jeff Clement or Greg Norton.
John McLaren rants about the team’s defense, yet he’s okay with starting Raul Ibanez in left field.
Jeremy Reed and Wlad Balentein are in a platoon.

By the time this team is competive again, Felix will be signing with the Red Sox.

By the time this team is competive again, Ichiro will no longer be a useful ball player.

Bill Bavasi literally made each member of the team sit down in front of their lockers and admit responsibility for being the worst team in baseball.

Despite that Bill Bavasi is responsible for putting this team together.

Jarrod Washburn is still a starter.

Beluga Tits is still a starter.

We’re stuck with Carlos Silva for three more years after this one.

Erik Bedard must hate it in Seattle.

Erik Bedard has an ERA+ of 89 so far on the season.

The team literally does not believe in the merits of modern metrics for judging talents’ defense.

Raul Ibanez, Adrian Beltre, and Jose Lopez are all competing with one another for who leads the team in OPS. They’re all hovering around .750.

JJ Putz is likely gone this July.

For Chuck James.
Kenji is still resigned through 2011.           

Kenji’s extension means that Jeff Clement, who was drafted as a catcher, is likely our future first baseman or DH.
The reason we took Jeff Clement over mashers like Cameron Maybin and Ryan Braun was precisely because he can catch.
Have you noticed how much weight Yuniesky has gained? He is no longer adequate at shortstop.
Even if John McLaren or Bill Bavasi goes, these problems are going to continue for as long as Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong run the front office.

Did I miss anything?





Drafting High School Versus College Players

June 4, 2008

Every year as the MLB draft approaches you start to hear a number of debates on the subject. Who is the top overall talent? Who will be drafted where? Who should be drafted where? Should teams draft based on need or on the best overall talent available? Should a team go after high school or college talent?

I would like to take the opportunity to address the latter point. Everyone knows the basic arguments about high school and college players. It’s a matter of risk versus reward. The most talented high school players will enter the draft after twelfth grade, but being younger, they also have a stronger chance of burning out. Those players who are less talented end up going on to play college ball. The ones who continue to develop while remaining healthy enter the draft after three or four years of university life.

Because arguments can be made for both prep and collegiate athletes I would like to go through the first round of each MLB draft from 2000 to 2005 and classify those who were drafted. Let’s find out how many high schoolers were drafted, how many made it to the show, and then we can compare it to the number of college players.

High School: Out of 92 players drafted, 35 have made it to the major leagues.  That’s a rate of 38%.*

College: Out of 88 players drafted, 51 of those players have touched the major leagues. That’s 57%.

Notable high schoolers that were drafted in the first round over period include Adrian Gonzalez, Adam Wainwright, Gavin Floyd, Joe Mauer, Casey Kotchman, Jeremy Bonderman, Zack Greinke, BJ Upton, Matt Cain, Jeff Francoeur, James Loney, Cole Hamels, Scott Kazmir, Jeremy Hermida, Chad Billingsley, Lastings Milledge, Brandon Wood, Nick Markakis, Delmon  Young, John Danks, Philip Hughes, Homer Bailey, Billy Butler, Colby Rasmus, Justin Upton, Cameron Maybin, and Jay Bruce.

Notable college players that were drafted include Chase Utley, Mark Prior, Mark Teixeira, Bobby Crosby, Noah Lowry, Joe Blanton, Jeremy Guthrie, Jeff Francis, Joe Saunders, Khalil Green, Nick Swisher, Carlos Quentin, Chad Cordero, Conor Jackson, Richie Weeks, Stephen Drew, Jeremy Sowers, Jered Weaver, Justin Verlander, Matt Garza, Ryan Braun, Ryan Zimmerman, Jeff Clement, Jacoby Ellsbury, Troy Tulowitzki, Alex Gordon, and Mike Pelfrey.

As a side note, one might initially notice that the draft has been trending towards college players since the start of the decade. However, in 2006 only 14 collegiates were drafted in the first round. The number dropped to 12 in 2007.

* Of course, It should also be noted that high schoolers are drafted younger and that it’s very likely that a larger number of those prep players that were drafted are still making their ways through their teams’ systems. Meanwhile, most college students that were drafted should likely be in the majors right now, if not on the very cusp.



Happy Felix Day

May 18, 2008

Joe Posnanski recently wrote, “I never argue with people who say baseball is boring because, well, baseball is boring, But then, suddenly, it isn’t. And that’s why it’s so great.”

I appreciate that sentiment because it’s very, very true. You have a team winning by three runs, with a pitcher who is shutting the opposing team down. But then there’s a walk, a hit, and a homerun, and suddenly it’s a completely different ball game. Or you have a team who has lost eight of their last ten games, and they’re being beaten again, when boom! Their struggling (but tall!) first baseman charges the mound and throws his helmet at the pitcher. Maybe that’s a bad example, but the fact remains: anything can happen at anytime in baseball.

That’s why Felix Day is special. Because you know his potential for greatness. And you know that for every mediocre start he puts in, he’s going to give you a gem. And that even his mediocre still offer glimpses of his potential.

Last night I opted to go to a play with my girlfriend rather than watch Erik Bedard’s start. I knew he might pitch an outstanding game and that I might end up regretting having missed it. He did have a great outing, but I was able to handle doing something else instead (the play ended up being sold out, by the way, so we took a walk and watched a movie instead). But a Felix Day? There’s no excuse for missing that. Because while good pitchers, like Bedard, come and go, there’s only one Felix.



Where They Were At Age 22

May 17, 2008

Last year USSMariner wrote a post that looked at where various pitching aces were at age 21, compared to Felix. The King is a year older now, and I thought it would be interesting to perform this exercise again. Below is a list of eight aces. The list features predominately younger pitchers, although Johan Santana and Pedro Martinez were included out of curiousity.

At age 22:

Jake Peavy – 194 IP, 156 K, 82 BB, 173 H, 77.8 LOB%, .263 BABIP, 4.99 FIP 

Brandon Webb – Spent the season playing for the Lancaster Jethawks in A+ ball.

Josh Beckett – Split the year playing in the minor leagues and with the Florida Marlins. For the Marlins that year his stats read 107.7 IP, 113 K, 44 BB, 93 H, 68.5 LOB%, .296 BABIP, 3.69 FIP.

Cole Hamels – Split the year between three minor league teams and the Philadelphia Phillies. For the Phillies his stats read 132.3 IP, 145 K, 48 BB, 117 H, 72.1 LOB%, .300 BABIP, 3.98 FIP.

Carlos Zambrano – 214 IP (Whoo Dusty Baker), 168 K, 94 BB, 188 H, 73.0 LOB%, .291 BABIP, 3.47 FIP.

Johan Santana – 43.7 IP, 28 K, 16 BB, 50 H, 72.6 LOB%, .316 BABIP, 4.87 FIP.

Pedro Martinez – 144.7 IP, 142 K, 45 BB, 115 H, 72.1 LOB%, .281 BABIP, 3.31 FIP.

CC Sabathia – 197.7 IP, 141 K, 66 BB, 190 H, 75.2 LOB%, .291 BABIP, 3.95 FIP.

So far in the 2008 season, Felix has posted a line of 61.3 IP, 52 K, 27 BB, 63 H, 77.7 LOB%, .324 BABIP, 3.79 FIP.

This is not a bad line. While there is room for improvement (K rate, hits, and his LOB% suggests that he’s been pretty lucky), Felix fits right in with the rest of those names.

As Douglas Adams might say, don’t panic. Felix has not reached his ceiling. He’s not a permanent number two starter. He’s an ace in training who, once he gets his command down, will quite possibly be the best pitcher in baseball.



Jose Lopez

May 10, 2008

Jose Lopez has 3 BB on the year.

His most recent walk was on April 11th. His .292 OBP so far this year is actually better than his 2007 OBP of .284.

If the season really is lost, then I have no problem with eventually flipping Lopez to another team and promoting Chen. I doubt Chen is a longterm fix, and I don’t believe that a 30-year old Orlando Hudson is the answer this offseason. But I also don’t believe that Lopez is going to help us much at reaching the post-season.