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Rotation Shake-Up On The Way

<em>"I sure am good at that." </em>
"I sure am good at that."

Earlier this very season, Hector Noesi started 17 games for the Seattle Mariners. Do you remember what the experience of watching Hector Noesi start was like? In case you don't, go to your kitchen right now and start making a pretty good sandwich. Don't start making like the greatest sandwich you've ever made, but put something together that has a little thought. Like mustard? Add some mustard. Like hummus instead? Add hummus instead, or in addition. Cheese? Throw in your favorite protein, and some vegetables, put it all between delicious fresh bread -- all right, you've got yourself a sandwich. Raise the sandwich to your mouth, as if you're about to start eating it. Now instead of eating it, jam the sandwich into your face a few times and drop it on the floor and step on it and rub it around. That's what the experience of watching Hector Noesi start was like.

Good news! You're going to see more Hector Noesi starts. But if it makes you feel any better, you're also going to see more Erasmo Ramirez starts, and fewer Kevin Millwood and Blake Beavan starts. From Larry Larue:

The team has confirmed that pitchers Erasmo Ramirez and Hector Noesi will make two starts each in the final weeks, and that Kevin Millwood and Blake Beavan will give those games up.

Felix Hernandez, Jason Vargas, Hisashi Iwakuma -- nothing's changing for any of them, barring some surprise. But instead of combining for nine or ten starts, Millwood and Beavan will combine for five or six starts, while Noesi and Ramirez get the rest. It hardly means anything, because we're talking about two starts, or four starts, and it's the end of a non-playoff season, but this is what counts as news come September. Something else that counts as news is that Luis Jimenez is in the starting lineup tonight. I wish that there were a 24-hour all-Mariners channel on TV so that this time of year I could tune in and watch anchors go insane on camera. "We take you now to Bill Krueger, who will analyze every individual pitch that Lucas Luetge threw in his last appearance. Bill?" "THANKS BRAD OVERALL LUCAS DID A GOOD JOB OF KEEPING THE BALL DOWN AND IF YOU LISTEN TO MY KEYS IT WAS IMPORTANT FOR LUCAS TO KEEP THE BALL DOWN, HE REALLY KEPT THE BALL DOWN, LET'S GO TO THE VIDEOTAPE HERE WE SEE PITCH NUMBER ONE THAT LUCAS THREW-"

Felix and Vargas, the Mariners weren't going to disrupt. It makes sense that the organization would like to see Noesi and Ramirez some more, since Ramirez was pitching well before he got hurt, and since Noesi was sent to Tacoma to make adjustments that he might or might not have made. That left the Mariners having to decide who to limit between Iwakuma, Millwood, and Beavan, and the front office is probably still trying to figure out whether Iwakuma would be worth re-signing. Millwood is a non-factor for the future and I think seeing one start from Blake Beavan is seeing every start from Blake Beavan. There's nothing more the Mariners need to know about Blake Beavan. There are probably some things the Mariners wish they didn't know about Blake Beavan. "What do you mean he used to throw in the high 90s?"

Noesi, obviously, has been a disappointment, since there was reason to believe he'd be a perfectly capable #3 or #4. He might still work out that way, but he clearly has a lot more work to do. Ramirez might open next season in the rotation, depending on a few things. He's definitely a more interesting pitcher than Beavan, and he seems to be a better pitcher than Beavan. Given that the top prospects don't seem ready, Ramirez makes a lot of sense, so long as he doesn't completely eat shit with his remaining opportunities. And even then, it's like, okay, those were two starts, let's not rush to judgment. People can be so reactionary sometimes.

Noesi returns to a 5.77 ERA and his Tacoma ERA was 5.88. He did get better over time, though, and it's not like we could've expected him to make the necessary adjustments right away. His will be interesting starts to watch. Ramirez has returned to a 3.82 ERA and he's coming off five earned-run-less innings in Las Vegas, which is practically unheard of. Noesi and Ramirez will also supposedly be available out of the bullpen, when they're not approaching or coming off of a start. You know who's not available out of the Mariners' bullpen? Julio Mateo. And thank fuckin God for that, that's what I say.