Let's start with the bad news tonight, because what's the 15th day of rain after you've already been through 14?
Congrats to Mariners for beating Corey Kluber. But they now have 13 straight games with 3 R or fewer, first time since 1981 Braves.— David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield) June 10, 2015
That is also a club record, and that's amazing because I watched a whole, whole lot of 2010. 5 years later, despite approaching half a billion dollars in investment this offense is still capable of once in a generation levels of suck. The Mariners face Trevor Bauer tomorrow and have an excellent chance of running that streak to 14.
The odds of that streak continuing are greater because of Bad News the Second: In the top of the 5th inning with the Mariners trying to play add on Nelson Cruz, the team's single storm in the eye of a hurricane of dreadful calm, left the game with a back injury. He, and I, made this face:
This is where I stand on my soapbox a bit:
Attention, Mariners - I will freely acknowledge that yes, Nelson Cruz injured himself in the batter's box and not in the field and that yes, I am no doctor (we have dog cornholers for that around here) and as such have no viable medical justification, diagnosis or in depth analysis as to what Nelson Cruz did to wonk up his back.
HOWEVER, for the 7,192nd time Nelson Cruz is a poor defending, mid 30's, injury prone DH who has been karumping and careening around the outfield for the majority of the season. When we complain about that we aren't just complaining about poor defense, although hello you have bad DH's by and large and here is a good DH whom you don't use at DH, but also that Nelson Cruz has spent ~40% of a season hitting like late 90's Alex Rodriguez and that is nice and why would you risk it you silly nincompoops?
Anyway, sorry I have have about 2 weeks of complaining to do. To the good news:
McClendon on Cruz's back spasms: "I was told he’s OK. He had some tightness in his back. He got some treatment on it….— Bob Dutton (@TNT_Mariners) June 10, 2015
- Robinson Cano's travel day was sufficient to rest him up from Sunday's bout with Archer Flu and get him back in the lineup, facing none other than the Klubot himself. Cano responded with a 2-5 day, 2 doubles and another ball somewhere in the Baby Bear portion of the Line Drive Family. Cano after the game:
"I would say tonight was luck," he said. "I finally hit it where they weren’t playing. I wish I could continue getting that luck more often."On the one hand cool Robbie, you know you've had some bad luck. On the other I hope you understand that you hit it where they weren't playing by hitting the danged baseball in the air, where it is far more difficult to station defenders because it is not Super Baseball 2020. Do that more.
- Hey, holy shit the Mariners beat Corey Kluber. Kluber over his last 5 starts: 40 IP, 31 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 59 K. Yes. 59/3 K/BB ratio. Corey Kluber has spent a month+ pitching like peak Roger Clemens arm with Greg Maddux command.
But today the Klubot was human. Or perhaps he always has been human and today he was one of the vacant, shell-like husk humans from The Southern Reach. Either way Kluber walked 3 batters just today, and struck out only 4. , over 7 innings. Had the team not continued it's baffling case of stage fright with RISP (2-9) they would have knocked him out far earlier.
I am sure there are reasons for Kluber's relative struggles today, some tangible, others less so. All I know is the Mariners are running a pitching Gulag right now and anytime one of the game's elites wants to have a Jarrod Washburn type start against them is fine with me.
- The Astros lost their 6th game in a row and no longer appear to be the single most infallible team in the history of the game. You should take joy in this because you have little to celebrate of your own. What does misery love?
- It's no profundity to observe that this season has been remarkably frustrating so far. Frustration's sting bites far harder when satisfaction feels so tangible. Even now, after all the fingers and backs and Rodneys this team makes me suffer not because they feel so hopeless but because they feel so close, so capable of something worthwhile.
If you share this burden friend and dear, dear reader I advise one consider Zen and the Art of the Beimel:
- Tomorrow, a rejuvenated (juvenated?) Taijuan Walker vs. Trevor Bauer. The Mariners since the beginning of 2014 have an almost 8% better winning percentage on the road than at home (h/t Andrew). Is that dumb? You bet! Is it possible it's random? Of course! But we're looking for hope. Hope is great, even if it means we get upset. Getting upset just means we're living, man. Don't ever fear the pain. Pain is life. It means you got breath. Let's get them tomorrow.