When the Mariners swept the Rangers, who were fresh off an absolute dumpstering by the San Diego Padres, the reaction among fans was more like “Well, the Rangers are in worse shape than we thought,” instead of “WOOO WINNING STREAK!!!” Then the Mariners strolled into San Diego and won game one in convincing fashion against of the better teams in baseball, snapping San Diego’s 8-game winning streak. This certainly turned a few heads, and suddenly my Twitter timeline was full of optimism about the (/checks notes) ....Seattle Mariners?
The Seattle Mariners may be turning a corner...— Joe (@JoeDoyleMiLB) August 26, 2020
Gonna go ahead and check the AL Wild Card standings for no reason at all.— Colin O'Keefe (@colinokeefe) August 26, 2020
the smart part of my brain: No Megan, not this year. Still not gonna happen. Such a long shot.— Megan Corcoran (@megancorco) August 26, 2020
the fun part of my brain: BUT THE MARINERS ARE BECOMING FUN AND GOOD ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN, ITS 2020
Then Wednesday, August 26 happened and the Mariners and Padres decided to join many other teams across the NBA, WNBA, and MLB in striking out of solidarity for Jacob Blake and the protesters in Kenosha, Wisconsin. It was absolutely the right move and I was in support of them striking for more games if only to bring further national attention to the severe systemic racism issues at hand in America. But, alas, the Mariners and Padres returned to play on Thursday with two 7-inning games against the Padres because that’s a scenario that happens in 2020.
And to their credit, the Mariners scored 15 runs in those two games and barring a catastrophic bullpen disaster at the end of game one, would have swept one of the hottest teams in baseball. As is, a sweep against a bad team and a series win (with 23 runs scored!) against a really good team in the Padres is certainly eyebrow-raising. And who do the Mariners play next?
Look, it’s chaos out there, I know. I’m not even ready to think about this, but here we go. Because I never bothered to entertain the thought of the 2020 Mariners making the playoffs, I had to look this up:
Eight teams is A LOT compared to what we’re used to for MLB playoffs. The Mariners are currently here at number 11 in terms of W-L record:
This could absolutely fall apart at any moment, but Detroit and Baltimore are really bad on paper. Before the season started, most LL staffers were resigned to thinking “oh well the Mariners cannot be worse than the Orioles or the Tigers, so there’s no way we’re getting close to Kumar Rocker.” Toronto is also not great. And the Astros have been extremely rocky at times, so they could also implode at any moment from the sheer force of having their heads up their own asses so intensely. WHO KNOWS?!
But really, it’s the AL West we need to focus on and against all odds, the Angels are completely shitting the bed and the Rangers have proven to have no pop in their lineup. If the Astros stumble some more, that extra second place playoff spot could somehow end up right in the Mariners’ lap, smoldering chemical fire of a bullpen none withstanding. I mean, the Mariners just traded Taijuan Walker for a PTBNL, so Jerry Dipoto’s plan could be taking a very unexpected (but fun!) detour in the next month.
I can’t believe I’m talking myself into this and I fully reserve the right to pretend this post doesn’t exist if the Mariners trip over their own feet against the Angels this weekend (gee that’s never happened before), but honestly, Team Chaos is having a career year in 2020 so we’ll just have to wait and see.
TO THE POLLS!
Did I talk you into believing?
This poll is closed
Get the fuck out of here.
What is a playoff?
If the Mariners make the 2020 playoffs, how meaningful will it be to you?
This poll is closed
The results of a 60-game season are meaningless, but at least there is baseball?
I would be actively angry at the Mariners for doing such a thing
Again, what are playoffs?
What team has the worst record in baseball despite employing Mike Trout, Shohei Ohtani, washed Albert Pujols, and Anthony Rendon?
This poll is closed
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim