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Series Preview: Oakland Athletics @ Seattle Mariners

Seattle: 58-101
Athletics: 75-83


Game 1: Brandon Morrow's Dead Arm vs Sean Gallagher
Game 2: Ryan Rowland-Smith* vs Greg Smith*
Game 3: Ryan Feierabend* vs Josh Outman*

Under Mel Stottlemyre, we have seen the Mariners pitchers rely more and more on fastballs to start games. We have seen multiple pitchers take the mound despite having serious injury issues. We have seen a lack of development at the major league level and we have seen Morrow left out there when even a lobotomized lemming too preoccupied with eating its own excrement to bother comprehending baseball knew that it was unwise to have him start the 7th inning.

Hitting coaches don't do all that much, and bench coaches don't do anything at all except take over should the manager get ejected from the game (or team), but pitching coaches can actually matter a little bit. Especially when you have a number of young pitchers on the team that need to keep developing. Our pitching coach appears to think that they only thing they need to develop is the number of times they manage to throw consecutive fastballs at the beginning of a game. 90% of the Mariner management team deserves to lost their jobs this winter. Mel Stottlemyre deserves to lose his twice.

Likely Starters:
C Kurt Suzuki/Rob Bowen^
1 Daric Barton*
2 Cliff Pennington^
3 Jeff Baisley
S Bobby Crosby
L Aaron Cunningham
C Ryan Sweeney*/Carlos Gonzalez*
R Travis Buck*
D Jack Cust*

Somehow, this collection of players who judging by their names would be more at home on a polo ground than at The Polo Grounds have actually managed to score runs lately. 56 times over the past 11 contests actually. Over the same period, the Mariners offense has managed to score a cumulative 37 runs. That 37 runs isn't much of an embarrassment given the lineups that we've run out have been huge embarrassments. Our lineup needs to be put to another use, such as glue.


Well, here we are.

Three games until it's over. I won't be sad after Sunday because for the first time since 2001 I will be passably emotionally invested in the playoffs (RAYS!), but at some point in October of November it will hit me. Opening Day 2009 is one of the best days of the year and it's six months away. Here's hoping that before that cold realization really sinks in, the Mariners new GM search heats up enough to keep me sustained for what will become either the most exciting Mariner-related day in quite some time or just another day spent sharpening razor blades. I suppose it could also be an ambivalent day.

In fact, that's probably what will happen. They won't hire Antonetti and they won't hire Steve Phillips. Instead, they'll hire someone we have zero read on. Could be good, could be bad, could have authority, could be a Lincoln/Armstrong patsy. We won't know and that non-knowledge will suck us in again like another stupid TV cliffhanger. I hate us.


Westvleteren Abt 12
Westvleteren Abdij St. Sixtus. Westvleteren, BE

It's what I call, good.