The Five Biggest Early-Season Mariners Disappointments

The Mariners have an off day today, so to fill the void, here's some negative content so that you can feel something like how you've felt on 15 other days already this month. Anything to feel normal again. These are presented in no particular order because nobody likes a stupid argument.

(1) Jack Cust

Go over to the Fangraphs hitter leaderboards, click on ISO, and sort in ascending order. There, above Paul Janish, above Juan Pierre, above Alcides Escobar and Ryan Theriot and Ronny Cedeno and Chris Getz, you'll find Jack Cust, the current owner of the lowest isolated slugging percentage in baseball. Cust was signed in the offseason to bring some established veteran power to the heart of the Mariners' order, and to this point he has rewarded us with as many home runs as has David Pauley. I wouldn't say the guy looks like toast, but that's only because people rarely look like toast*. He is playing like toast. Jack Cust is playing like toast would play.

* although toast often looks like people

(1) Josh Lueke

When it became clear that he was going to make the team, I was excited to see how well Lueke would perform against Major League competition. With his high-power fastball and potentially devastating secondary stuff, Lueke had all the makings of a relief ace. 6.1 innings and 18 baserunners later, he's back with Tacoma with shattered confidence and a fastball that's missing more ticks than a worried Lyme disease researcher. It isn't troubling that I don't know what's wrong with Josh Lueke. What's troubling is that nobody does.

(1) Chone Figgins

I guess it was my own fault for feeling optimistic. I don't know why I thought Figgins would bounce back during spring training. Maybe it had something to do with his return to third base, but why would that have any effect on his offense? So I blame myself for assuming Chone Figgins wouldn't suck. I also blame Chone Figgins for sucking. I know all about his luck numbers and I know he'll be better than this, but better than this isn't necessarily good, or anywhere close. I am so over this guy. Everybody is always over this guy unless they're lying down, but I am mentally over him, too.

(1) Franklin Gutierrez

It isn't Guti's fault that Guti has been a disappointment, but where months ago we thought we had an easy answer for his health problems, now we might have an answer or we might not, and that answer is a chronic and basically untreatable syndrome with which Guti would just have to live. If Guti does have IBS, I'm sure he wouldn't be the only baseball player playing through it, but it would make me wonder about his ceiling and dependability. Suffice to say that four-year contract hasn't started off as hoped. And, great, poop jokes.

(1) General team record

We knew the Mariners were unlikely to be much of a team this year, but we didn't think it would be too much to ask for them to kind of hang around in the race for the first few months before dropping out. Apparently it was too much to ask. The M's started out 2-0 and then proceeded to lose their next seven games, beginning the 2011 regular season with an almost immediate thud. Today is April 25th. Today is April 25th, and I haven't even daydreamed about the Mariners making the playoffs in about two weeks. I feel zero excitement about the team. I only feel excitement about individual players. It is way too early in the year for that to set in.

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