Seattle Loses to Real Rivals and Fake Rivals Over Weekend

MARINERS (31-43) Δ Ms ATHLETICS (35-38) EDGE
HITTING (wOBA) -48.2 (30th) -0.6 -43.3 (28th) Athletics
FIELDING (BABIP) 12.3 (9th) -4.7 24.3 (3rd) Athletics
ROTATION (tRA) -7.1 (19th) 1.1 -11.6 (21st) Mariners
BULLPEN (tRA) -8.7 (27th) 1.7 -2.2 (18th) Athletics
OVERALL (RAA) -51.7 (27th) -2.5 -32.8 (21st) ATHLETICS
Explainer

At this point with the way the season's gone and is going, I'm more closely following the minors and wondering about potential roster moves in the next five weeks. Trading season is here, will the Mariners get involved?

I didn't find much joy to talk about in reviewing and previewing the series so instead, join me on a whimsical tour that ponders the reality that is Travis Blackley and Sean Doolittle being effective pitchers for the Athletics.

Batter PA P/PA Slash line nBB K (sw) 1B/2B/3B/HR Sw% Ct% Qual+
C Wells 29 3.8 .407/.483/.556 2 7 (7) 9 / 1 / 0 / 1 46 70 149.5
F Gutierrez 34 3.7 .290/.382/.516 3 7 (6) 6 / 1 / 0 / 2 42 81 109.2
B Ryan 33 4.2 .310/.394/.483 4 6 (6) 6 / 2 / 0 / 1 37 71 130.8
I Suzuki* 52 3.0 .327/.365/.388 2 4 (3) 13 / 3 / 0 / 0 48 89 102.6
M Saunders* 43 3.8 .244/.279/.415 2 8 (6) 7 / 1 / 0 / 2 57 81 131.7
J Montero 40 3.9 .263/.300/.368 2 10 (9) 8 / 1 / 0 / 1 51 71 132.1
K Seager* 51 3.7 .213/.275/.383 4 12 (10) 6 / 2 / 0 / 2 48 76 127.0
D Ackley* 48 4.3 .209/.306/.209 4 12 (7) 9 / 0 / 0 / 0 32 82 64.5
J Smoak^ 46 4.0 .125/.217/.200 5 7 (6) 4 / 0 / 0 / 1 40 82 79.9

P/PA = pitches per PA [avg~3.8], nBB = uBB + HBP, Sw = swinging [avg~45%], Ct = contact [avg~81%], Qual+ = a measure of quality of batted balls [avg=100, higher is better]

I'm choosing to focus on the positive instead of all the horrible, horrible negatives. Yay, Guti! Yay, Casper! Yay, Ichiro drew walks!

Also a positive, Miguel Olivo doesn't crack the (20 PA) threshold to appear in this breakdown! Yay! Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!! However, with two of the three Oakland starting pitchers left-handed and the return of the DH, I expect to see much more Olivo.

Batter PA P/PA Slash line nBB SO (sw) 1B/2B/3B/HR Sw% Ct% Qual+
J Gomes 22 3.5 .450/.500/.000 2 7 (5) 4 / 2 / 0 / 3 33 72 296.3
B Moss* 49 4.3 .250/.327/.727 5 18 (16) 2 / 3 / 0 / 6 49 67 280.2
S Smith* 38 4.0 .258/.410/.581 7 6 (6) 2 / 4 / 0 / 2 43 82 144.3
C Crisp^ 50 3.7 .357/.460/.405 8 6 (3) 13 / 2 / 0 / 0 36 88 72.0
J Reddick* 47 3.9 .250/.375/.550 7 14 (12) 5 / 1 / 1 / 3 50 72 167.2
C Cowgill 22 4.9 .368/.409/.368 2 4 (3) 7 / 0 / 0 / 0 47 84 28.8
C Pennington^ 43 4.1 .243/.395/.351 6 8 (6) 7 / 1 / 0 / 1 45 78 79.8
J Weeks^ 51 4.1 .244/.392/.293 9 5 (3) 8 / 2 / 0 / 0 38 88 66.2
Y Cespedes 23 3.6 .238/.304/.429 2 7 (7) 3 / 1 / 0 / 1 49 66 134.5
B Inge 46 4.3 .231/.326/.385 6 11 (10) 5 / 3 / 0 / 1 43 71 91.7
K Suzuki 31 4.2 .200/.258/.200 1 7 (5) 6 / 0 / 0 / 0 46 82 46.3
MARINERS Δ Ms ATHLETICS EDGE
INFIELD 6.6 (11th) -3.5 14.9 (3rd) Athletics
OUTFIELD 5.8 (11th) -1.1 9.3 (9th) Athletics
RBBIP 0.300 (10th) -.004 0.290 (4th) Athletics
OVERALL 12.4 (9th) -4.7 24.3 (3rd) ATHLETICS
Explainer

More unwelcome play from the defense in the past series, but blips and slip ups are going to happen throughout a season. I still see this is a good defensive team out there, especially in its current standard format.

25 JUN 19:10

ERASMO RAMIREZ TOMMY MILONE*
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Tommy Milone has a low ground ball rate. Erasmo Ramirez has a very low ground ball rate if you go by the data sources that I go by. Other sources have his rate not so low, but whatever, there's no time to dwell on that. These pitchers allow many fly balls and one might be heading toward you right this instant. It might literally be raining baseballs from this baseball game because these two baseballing hurlawhigs cannot stop seeding the atmosphere with their hurled base O'balls. Look out! By which I mean, up. Look up!

26 JUN 19:10

JASON VARGAS* TRAVIS BLACKLEY*
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Hey, look who is back (in black (ley))! Travis Blackley made six starts with the Mariners way back in 2004 at only 21 years of age. I had forgotten just how young he was then as Blackley deservedly shot through the minor leagues. The starts in Seattle did not go well however and then he spent 2005 with a shoulder injury. The Mariners would later trade him to San Francisco for Jason Ellison, who was not good.

Travis would wind his way through the Giants, the Phillies, the Diamondbacks, the Mets, the Athletics, the Melbourne (Australia) Aces, the KIA (Korea) Tigers, back to the Giants and now back to the Athletics where he's, of course, good now and I can only assume will have no trouble smothering the Mariners.

27 JUN 12:40

KEVIN MILLWOOD JARROD PARKER
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Better tune into this one if you're both a Mariners and Kevin Millwood fan. You might not get many more opportunities to watch him in a Mariners uniform and then what will you do? Have you thought of that? Have you planned for the future at all or are you just sitting there next to some packaged Ramen and furiously ordering "special" gold coins off the internet hoping that becomes your retirement investment?

If so, please give me a call. I have some special never before released gold coins that I can offer you for an incredible, unbeatable price!

Reliever BF Str% nBB Ct% K(sw) GB% HR Qual- LI
H Iwakuma 63 63.5 8 79.4 7 (6) 63.8 2 105.8 0.8
S Kelley 51 66.5 3 80.0 12 (12) 28.6 1 117.1 1.1
C Furbush* 50 66.8 1 70.7 21 (13) 63.0 0 49.4 0.6
B League 46 64.0 2 84.7 8 (7) 50.0 0 96.8 1.0
T Wilhelmsen 46 71.5 3 73.3 16 (13) 59.3 0 53.3 1.7
L Luetge* 30 58.3 5 79.3 5 (2) 45.0 0 77.4 0.7
S Pryor 21 65.6 2 79.2 5 (5) 57.1 1 79.5 1.5

Str% = strike rate [avg~63%], Ct% = contact rate [avg~78%], GB% = groundball rate [avg~45%], Qual- = a measure of quality of batted balls [avg=100, lower is better], LI = leverage [avg~1.2]

Charlie Furbush continues to press his case with an obscene strikeout-to-walk rate and outings spanning multiple innings at a time. I wonder who makes a next Major League start first, Blake Beavan or Charlie Furbush?

Reliever BF Str% nBB Ct% K(sw) GB% HR Qual- LI
G Balfour 49 59.9 7 81.3 11 (9) 29.0 0 76.5 1.4
J Miller 43 63.8 6 81.7 9 (8) 48.1 1 47.7 0.6
R Cook 40 56.0 9 71.0 12 (8) 50.0 0 31.1 1.9
J Blevins* 36 67.7 1 74.3 6 (6) 44.4 1 95.9 0.8
S Doolittle* 35 67.1 2 67.9 17 (12) 40.0 0 65.8 1.3
B Fuentes* 31 54.1 6 88.4 2 (2) 31.8 4 280.5 1.3

That's a whole lot of walks you have been surrendering, Oakland bullpen. Aside from S (Sean) Doolittle, who is, really? He was a hitter; until like just this year. He was injured a bunch in 2009 and 2010 and despite not being a bad hitter up to that point, he converted to pitching during the instructionals last year. So then he throws 26 innings of relief spread across High-A, Double-A and Triple-A and strikes out 50, walks eight, plunks three and gives up all of eight hits, none of them homers.

And now he's up in the Majors and doing this and doing that almost exclusively with his mid-90s fastball, which he's been throwing greater than 80% of the time.

This should be a way huger deal.

Series Beer(s): Water
Mmmm, tasty water. A beverage jammed with refreshment and packed with flavor to match a baseball series between the Mariners and the Athletics. Catch the fever!

And then cool it with some water!

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