Whenever I don't post a full recap after a game, it's always due to one of two things - either I'm feeling lazy, or I have something more important to do. I usually don't mention which it is, but I can tell you that, in terms of historical frequency, the former is beating the latter by a significant margin. Why do I bring this up now? Because tonight is another one of those nights where I need an excuse, although this time it's because I'm feeling lazy and I have something more important to do. Take that, Mariners.
So I should take you straight to the chart, shouldn't I?
Biggest Contribution: Yuniesky Betancourt, +21.5%
Biggest Suckfest: Felix Hernandez, -16.4%
Most Important Hit: Betancourt single, +24.0%
Most Important Pitch: Patterson homer, -18.1%
Total Contribution by Pitcher(s): -0.9%
Total Contribution by Hitters: +41.7%
In case you're curious, the Win Expectancy bottomed out at 5.2% when Jay Gibbons singled to load the bases with nobody out in the fourth. Immediately after that it took off in the opposite direction, with a force out, a double play, and a home run bumping it up to 17.5% in the span of a few minutes. Soon after that the sixth inning happened, and the rest is history. Nothing quite like those six-run rallies where only one guy hits the ball farther than 200 feet.
Important things to take from today's game:
-Felix, like many others of questionable immortality, occasionally has days where his stuff just isn't working, and he has to labor through a start when he knows he doesn't have anything in the tank. It sucks, but that's what happened this afternoon, and all you can do is take solace in the fact that he actually got his first win of the season today and move on with the same high expectations as before.
-Despite the Baltimore MLB.tv feed telling us that he hit 99 and 101 on the gun, Rafael Soriano also looked a little flat today for the first time in a while. Then Sherrill allowed a hit to a lefty for just the second time this month...today just wasn't a banner day for the Mariners' best pitchers. Thank God for Putz, who dominated again when the team needed it most. I don't think anyone in baseball benefits more from the usage of a second pitch than this guy right here.
-Eddie Guardado sucks and is depressing.
-Adrian Beltre's home run was absolutely legitimate, a blast to straightaway center off a high fastball around chin level. In terms of longballs hit against pitchers I've actually heard of he's still 0-for the season, but this was a bomb, the kind of thing that makes you stare at the screen without blinking for a few minutes as your brain tries to make sense of just how far the ball traveled in the air. The bad news is that hitting #1 suddenly puts pressure on Beltre to produce again, where before we all pretty much accepted that any given rally was over the moment the A-Train stepped up to the plate. In true Adrian Beltre fashion, I fully expect him to hit another home run tomorrow and then follow it up with five consecutive 0-4's, just to dick around with us a little bit.
-I swear to you, the only thing - the only thing - that could make Willie Ballgame more fun to write about is if he were to start sporting a goatee. Well, guess what? My prayers have been answered. Just give me a few days to consolidate all my new material. I mean, man. That's terrific.
Early game tomorrow, as Jamie Moyer takes on RODRIGO LOPEZ at 10:35am PDT.