I'm done reacting after every loss like it is the one that finally broke the camel's back. The Mariners dropped a game and they did so in a fantastic fashion. For a couple of innings this seemed like a game they could compete in. Iwakuma looked good-ish for a while, but then the Angels turned into the Angels and less-than-humbly reminded the Mariners why LA sits at the top of the AL West and not Seattle.
And then, just like that, in a flurry of shit hitting the fan, everything seemed to go wrong. When the dust settled on Monday night, the Mariners lost a game on a night when all opponents worth caring about (except for the motionless Athletics) won. The Royals, in particular, won in a way that made me feel like the Mariners were already defeated. So when Iwakuma fell apart in the third inning, it just had the notions of one of those evenings like all hope was lost. A lot of factors go into this -- Iwakuma being less than good in his past five starts, but most importantly the fact that the Mariners offense needs to be taken out like three week old trash at the moment.
In the end, the Angels clinched a spot in the playoffs because they had to do so against the Mariners. I hate the Angels with a burning passion, and I do so even more now. But I refuse to acknowledge that the writing is on the wall for the 2014 season. Perhaps this is because my eye sight quit working worth anything in the second grade, but I still see plenty of time to get things right. The Mariners are two games back on the Royals and 3.5 games back on the Athletics. There are still 14 games left to play. So although each loss narrows that narrow window even more, playoff projections sit right around 30 percent. Combine that with this little interesting tidbit via Shannon Drayer today, and we still are in for some exciting times in September.
The Royals still have a suspended game they must finish and in that game that will be made up Sept. 22. They trail the Indians 4-2 in the 10th inning.
But enough with the posi-writing. Let's talk about tonight. This game was horrible. Everything the Mariners did tonight was horrible. The only good thing that happened was Albert Pujols pulled his hamstring after essentially winning the game in the third inning. It is a tough pill to swallow, but we have no choice but to swallow it and muster up the energy to be excited for tomorrow. The final 14 games are going to be rough, but at least we care about the games for the first time in a long, long time.
There isn't much that needs to be recapped about this game. Iwakuma was rolling along alright until he ran into trouble in the third inning. He lost a battle against Albert Pujols that on one hand I wanted to tip my hat to him for trying hard, but on the other hand slap him across the face because Iwakuma should never have been in that situation. Iwakuma rolled over the first eight batters of the game and it looked liked he was back on track. Then, with two outs in the bottom of the third inning, this is what transpired.
- Iwakuma walks Efren Navarro (the Angels No. 9 hitter) on four pitches.
- Kole Calhoun singles up the middle, Navarro to second.
- Mike Trout is walked to load the bases.
- Albert Pujols doubles down the left field line to clear the bases, game basically over.