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Aaron Sele, 2005

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March 15th:

Hoping that Sele can catch lightning in a bottle for a year, when every indicator is pointing in the wrong direction, is a fool's errand.

Just when you thought that Sele might have actually turned into a decent addition off the scrap heap, he reverted back to his standard crappy performance level and earned himself his unconditional release from one of the worst teams in baseball today. His legacy:

Strikeout Rate: #98 out of 105 qualified pitchers
Strikeout/Walk Ratio: #99
Walk Rate: #72
Home Run Rate: #86
ERA: #97
Fielding-Independent ERA: #102
Runs Saved Above Average: #97

Aaron Sele wasn't the worst pitcher in baseball - here's to you, Jose Lima - but he was close, hurting the team far more than he ever helped it. What's worse is that it was easy to see coming; he was various shades of awful in the three years prior to this one, with a strikeout rate so low as to reduce his maximum upside to a poor man's Jamey Wright. Sele's PECOTA projection gave him a 50% chance of being below replacement level, so needless to say, his acquisition and subsequent addition to the rotation was met with fervent reluctance. As it turns out, Sele wasn't really the problem - he was just one of several on a flawed ballclub - but he was finished a while ago, so the decision to drop him off the roster today is more of an "about damn time" deal than anything else. You wonder if he would've stuck around this long were Bobby Madritsch healthy and effective in the rotation.

Whoever takes the rest of Sele's innings - be it Campillo, Hernandez, or even Jeff Harris - is going to be an improvement, and probably a significant one. The same goes for the roster spots currently belonging to Shigetoshi Hasegawa, Matt Thornton, Dave Hansen, Scott Spiezio, and whatever other driftwood the Mariners are talking about dumping. Make no mistake: in a lost season, the fun begins now.