That should do it.
We still have that same issue where one game is just one game, but between this pushing the M's a season-high nine back and the emphatic nature of the loss, this felt like an appropriate death knell. Watching along, I had no response. There were no feelings. I didn't care. I didn't care, because my heart finally figured out what my brain has long suspected - the 2010are almost certainly toast.
You eternal optimists can go on praying for better days ahead. That's fine. I mean, if you're going to follow along, you might as well hope, since hope comes free. I'll be hoping, too. But let's face it: this team isn't good enough, and moves that could make it good enough are no longer sensible. The moves that start to make sense now are moves that even make this team worse. This front office won't be placing calls about Adrian Gonzalez. It'll be taking calls about Cliff Lee.
The M's are done. Realistically, they're done. It sucks, but then, it's freeing in a lot of ways. And one of the ways that it's freeing is that we can finally knock it off with this whole nightmarish Ian Snell experiment. It was an understandable gamble at the time. I think most of us were supportive, if not falling all over ourselves with enthusiasm. Snell had some decent stuff, and a track record, and a shot at taking to a change of scenery. A year ago, he emerged as one of the premier buy-low candidates in the game.
But sometimes a player that's low will stay low, and for all the talk about how Ian Snell is in a better place, and how the M's have worked with him on a few things, and how we've seen some flashes, at the end of the day, he hasn't made any progress. Here's Snell as a starter.
Do you see the improvement? Because I sure as hell don't. He can't throw strikes, he can't miss bats, and for as bad as he is against righties, he's even worse against lefties, because he doesn't have a changeup. There's nothing to be positive about with Ian Snell. Nothing at all. He's just a righty with a fastball in the low-90s and an inconsistent breaking ball, like so many hundreds of high school and college arms picked in the draft over the last few days. I honestly wonder - I honestly wonder - if Taijuan Walker couldn't approximate Snell's performance right now.
If the M's were still in the hunt, then, okay, maybe it would make some sense to at least stick Snell back in the bullpen and try to see if he can help. He does very occasionally flash a power arm, and he was better during his brief stint in relief. But now? What's the point? Ian Snell has a $6.75m club option for 2011. Which means he's going to be a free agent. Which means that he's a miserable part of this team's present, and not at all a part of its future.
Which means it's time for him to go. There's no reason to trot him out there any more. Better to give those innings to a Luke French, or someone who might someday help the organization down the road. It's not even like cutting Snell would hurt them in the short-term. Cutting Snell would make the team better. It would make them better, and give them a glimpse of someone else.
Snell is bad now, he doesn't have any shred of trade value, and he's set to test the market in November. What would be the purpose of trying to get him straightened out? Nevermind that everything the team has done with him so far has clearly been a failure. Even if they still thought they could get him to improve, so what? What would be the payoff? A version of Ian Snell that pitches at a level somewhat better than pathetic for one or two months?
Forget it. Snell made some flippant remarks after getting yanked last Friday. He generated one strikeout and eight walks over his previous two starts, and today he gave up eight runs in 1.2 innings. He's getting frustrated, and he's getting worse. Let him go. Make him go. You don't even have to stick him in Tacoma. Let him walk free. He seems to be a big fan of walking.
Ian Snell is both bad and pointless, and the Rainiers could get a replacement to Texas in plenty of time for tomorrow. If he doesn't get cut, I won't be shocked, but I will be disappointed. Keeping him around after today - after everything - would be an insult to his teammates, to the coaches, to the prospects, and to the fans.