What He Says: "You know what? Take away a couple of pitches, and his outings have been pretty good."
What He Means: Horacio's usually pretty good, but he's been getting killed by a handful of mistakes every game.
Why It's Stupid: If you take away a couple of pitches from every start all year and re-evaluate the statistics, Ho's still one of the two or three worst pitchers in baseball. He's not getting killed because of a few bad pitches; he's getting killed because he sucks.
What He Says: "I know a lot of people are down on him right now, but (pitching coach) Rafael Chaves is going to try a few things and we're going to try to get him back on track. Horacio has thrown some good games for us this season, we've seen him dominate games."
What He Means: Horacio is not currently pitching to the best of his capabilities, but he has before, and we want him to get back to doing that.
Why It's Stupid: John McLaren is clearly unfamiliar with the definition of the word "dominate".
What He Says: "I asked manager John McLaren whether he thought about pinch-hitting for Lopez in that seventh inning situation. His response was that he didn't like "the lefty-righty matchups" so he stuck with Lopez."
What He Means: I have no idea.
Why It's Stupid: Pat Neshek is a submarining righty with the predictable platoon splits to go with it. Since breaking into the league, his OPS against is 215 points higher for lefties. Righty Jose Lopez hasn't hit well in forever. Both Ben Broussard (lefty) and Jose Vidro (switch-hitter) were available on the bench, with Willie Ballgame also hanging around in case McLaren wanted to keep solid defense at second later on. John McLaren has more than demonstrated his love for playing the matchups with the bullpen, but when it comes to hitting, it's like all of his knowledge disappears (see Raul hitting in the middle against lefties, Guillen hitting high against righties, this particular situation, etc). This was one of the most obvious pinch-hitting situations all season long, and McLaren blew it for absolutely no reason.
What He Says: "You know what, even if (Jones) doesn't play it's a good learning process for him. We're going to use him in different places, spot starts, defense, pinch running, possible pinch-hitting. It's not a priority for me to find him a place to play right now."
What He Means: I have bigger things to worry about than trying to think of how to field the best possible team every day.
Why It's Stupid: He has no bigger things to worry about than trying to think of how to field the best possible team every day.
What He Says: "You could see this coming (from Raul)."
What He Means: There were obvious signs that Raul was about to break out of his power slump.
Why It's Stupid: Where?
What He Says: "We haven't given up on (Ho)...He still believes in himself."
What He Means: Despite everything, Horacio's confidence is still pretty high. That's encouraging.
Why It's Stupid: Players don't get to the Major Leagues by being humble and losing confidence when they fail. If Horacio didn't believe in himself, he'd retire. Rene Rivera and Player A believed in themselves, too. Fun lot of good it did them.
All right, that should take care of my McLaren hostility for a while. Go Tigers! Go Jays! There's no shame in gaining ground because the competition can't help itself. Remember, "sucking less" and "being better" are just two ways to describe the same thing. So here's to the Mariners sucking less than their opponents.