clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Mariners didn't beat the Astros today, and Taijuan Walker is fine, HE'S FINE, ITS OK

The Astros beat the Mariners 6-3 but also, whatever.

here i am motherfucker i'm gonna catch this baseball i'm gonna wait
here i am motherfucker i'm gonna catch this baseball i'm gonna wait
Bob Levey/Getty Images

Be afraid: the Mariners lost.

Well, sure, I guess, whatever. Today the Mariners played the Houston Astros and it started out terribly, exactly awful in the kind of way that you never want to imagine a baseball game ever happening except you've watched the Mariners so why are you even pretending this isn't the reality in which we both inhabit?. So sure, first the Mariners blew through an inning at the plate and then Taijuan Walker came out of the gate throwing 91, landing in the opposite batter's box as if he was trying to cosplay Felix Hernandez' 2016 without the ten years of utter dominance to give him the ground to do it all. Here's a thing he did today:


Haha, wait, no that was back on May 1st.

Here's what Taijuan did today:


Yeah, now we're talkin. If you briefly compare these two images you will note a few things: one, the pitches in the first seem to hit planned spots a bit more accurately than the latter. Second, well, don't bother comparing the velocity on those two fastballs, except, no bother.

Something was wrong with Taijuan tonight, and all you needed to see was quite literally a graph of his last start against the Royals mapped onto tonight, where he was both pitching slow and missing his spots. In the first, he gave up this dinger to Carlos Correa. Then, in the second, it was a matter of trying to sweep up spillage from an overturned beer bottle after a night of foolishness: Evan Gattis reached on a throwing error, moved to second on a sac bunt, then scored on a Marwin Gonzalez homer off an 0-3 90mph cut fastball by Taijuan who was by now conspicuously holding his neck. It was terrifying, it was stomach-churning, it was....take it away Shannon Drayer:

Oh yeah but



/sigh. Be afraid.

So after everyone stepped back from the ledge the official word was that Taijuan simply experienced "neck spasms," which is either the worst news or the best, all things considered. He was relieved by Mayckol Guaipe in the third, and after the game the fresh prince claimed he just "slept on it" wrong, and would be back and ready for his next start. Either way, Guaipe was fine, and whatever, and you had to just be excited they were all still vertical in the end. We'll have to keep an eye on this as it develops, but it really sounds like the guy is ok. Also, it's mighty convenient that James Paxton is on the same schedule down in Tacoma but also FINE, HE'S FINE IT'S OK DON'T WORRY.

The (L)Astros tacked two more on in the fifth as Guaipe readily displayed why he wasn't fit to be anyone's long reliever, but then something interesting happened: after Astros' starter and former Mariner Doug Fister made it all the way into the seventh, these newfangled hot-swingin' M's decided they were going to throw a quick run together to turn this into a game, productive. After Cano grounded out to start the inning, Nelson Cruz was hit by a pitch, then quickly sent to third after the newly-hot Kyle Seager hit a double into the gap into right field. One mound visit later, and Adam Lind was walking on four straight pitches to load the bases.

Now on one hand, yeah, it's frustrating. All we have to our names for that then-awful Doug Fister trade is Charlie Furbush, who is currently on the disabled list keeping his ginger glory from all the world to see. On the other, well, name another (ostensible) member of the Mariners pen with more seniority, and name any other Mariners starter from the past few years who has become just another journeyman on a sub .400 team. I can think of a few. It's frustrating, and as bad as that trade was well you have to admit that Ketel Marte hitting a bases clearing triple seconds later off Pat Neshek makes you feel at least a little better about the whole situation!!!!!

...Except then the Astros retook the lead in the seventh off MiMo, and then just, you know what, fuck this, fuck the Astros, whatever let's get 'em tomorrow.

There will be more to say, and for once in my life I don't want to dwell on the negative. There are still games to be played and goofy helmets to be worn and series to be won. Until then, the sad, sad truth: