The Mariners, now with 46% less Miguel Olivo

20 nBB, 18 SO and a whole bunch of awesome

On 30 April, Miguel Olivo injured his groin and appeared likely to miss a significant amount of time. Though I don't personally wish ill harm on Miguel Olivo, I was overall pleased with the occurrence because I do wish much less playing time for Miguel Olivo and much more playing time for Jesus Montero and John Jaso. Up to that point, 24 games in, Jaso had just four starts, all at DH and Jesus Montero had only made five starts as catcher.

Many people in the baseball industry scoff, or worse, at any notion that Montero might survive as a catcher; I think many of us wanted to see some visual evidence of why, given the low esteem many of us hold their opinions after hearing similar outbursts concerning Dustin Ackley and second base. Many also just wanted more John Jaso, in whatever capacity was needed. Now those of us would get our wish as the tandem would have to handle 100% of the catching duties whilst Olivo was on the disabled list.

Olivo's injury was not as severe as first thought and he would return after only a 22-game absence. There were worries and cries of anguish that John Jaso would go back to being ignored and that Jesus Montero would go back to serving primarily as a DH. A problem with making assumptions about future events is that you are not from the future and that you are making an assumption and assumptions can be wrong. The condemnation has turned out to be quite premature.

Miguel Olivo started 22 of the team's first 24 games (92%) with 19 of them at catcher. Thirty-two games have been played since Olivo returned from the disabled list and Miguel Olivo has just 16 starts (50%) in that timeframe, 15 at catcher. Whereas before the injury, the starts at catcher and DH broke down thus:

Olivo: 19, 3
Jesus: 5, 16
Jaso: 0, 4

Since Olivo's return, they have been:

Olivo: 15, 1
Jesus: 11, 16
Jaso: 6, 8

Miguel Olivo has not been reinstated to the crippling level of playing time he was once briefly accorded and perhaps most telling was that during the Mariners six game stretch in National League ballparks, with no DH available, Miguel Olivo made just one start. Forced into picking the best combination of defense and offense at one spot, Manager Eric Wedge demonstrated no apparently fealty to Miguel Olivo.

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