My cup has truly runeth over with baseball this last week: Games for fun and for “work” and a 220 minute screening of “The History of the Seattle Mariners.” It’s been, frankly, a lot. Part of my move away from the HOF was because I felt like baseball was becoming my entire identity - which is cool! - but it also meant that being a Baseball Person eclipsed any other components of my * hair toss * sparkling personality. This week, though, my challenge was fitting the many baseball opportunities around all the other things I’ve enriched my life with since moving back to Seattle. It’s a good problem to have, but it does mean my brain is soggy like Drew Smyly’s arm. The silver lining for you all, dear readers, is that thanks to all that baseball time I have a whole host of great interviews and content coming to a Lookout Landing homepage near you.
Record for the week:
They kept their heads above water for one more week, though again it was in a thoroughly unexpected fashion. Series win in New York, but a series split against the Angels? Sounds suspicious, but...okay.
In my weeks of doing SUS, I’ve found that out of all the things I track here, run differential tends to be the most generally indicative of how I felt a week went.
Player of the week:
It’s the Grand Poobah of Grand Salamis, Jesse Winker. Wink led the team in fWAR this week, buoyed by a 36% walk rate and, of course, this beauty:
Please also note that Winker shares PoW honors with the legendary Sue Bird, who played her last regular season home game on the same day of Winker’s heroics. Game recognize game.
Play of the week:
At-bat of the week:
Typically at-bats of the week highlight good hitter moments, but we would be remiss if we didn’t call out Luis Castillo’s sparkling debut against the team who was certain they would get him. This unbelievably unfair slider capped off his first strikeout in a Mariners uniform, and I’m looking forward to many more in the future.
Nemesis of the week:
I feel like a broken record, but Phil Nevin and his Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim can slither right on back to the cesspool that is Orange County. I’m also starting to realize that this section of SUS may simply be a place for me to misdirect some of my frustration with the Seattle Mariners, rather than call out those who did any true wrongdoing... That doesn’t excuse the Angels, though.
Favorite Mariners content:
The Mariners adopted a clubhouse dog! And his name is Tucker!
This is my home now! pic.twitter.com/Xv6BSRhCvr— Tucker the Mariners Pup (@MarinersPup) August 6, 2022
Luis Castillo made his Mariners debut this week, and there was some great La Piedra content on LL. Kate Preusser covered his satisfying debut against the Yankees, and the Mariners’ corresponding offensive display. John Trupin dove deep into Castillo’s pitching metrics, and made an interesting connection between the ace and another beloved right-hander who threw in the PNW.
User flygutifly had a great write up on Jarred Kelenic’s call up, and why he would fare better this time. Thus far, no real luck, but as commenter rkiplinglfloaf astutely noted, “ A thousand thanks is not enough for this work, regardless of its final validity.”
Favorite thing I ate while watching/listening to a game:
In the late 2000s there was this there was a truly heinous Kate Moss quote that circulated and fueled toxic diet culture for years: “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” Among the many ways that Kate was wrong is this most fundamental truth: Free food will always taste better than any other food, period. And free popcorn, in particular, is the peak - for me, anyway.
This week I was fortunate to nosh on the finest free kernels that the Mariners press box has to offer. Watching a game from the press box is pretty middling, personally, but it was really great to get back into the clubhouse and start asking some of the real hard-hitting questions (Spoiler: Cal Raleigh is a breakfast sandwich man). Looking forward to sharing more from those interviews with you all soon!
Bold prediction for next week:
I’m channeling any/all bold prediction energy simply into good vibes for this Yankees series and hope for Not a Sweep. Anything beyond that is gravy. (I’m also going to predict another Carlos Santana dinger, because having now seen him take BP twice, the sound of the ball coming off that man’s bat is just on another level.)
The Mariners close out a brief homestand with three against the Yankees, and after a blessed Thursday off-day they’ll embark on a multi-city divisional road trip: Texas for three, Angels for three, Oakland for three.
This week in Mariners history:
To be honest, this was not a shining week in Mariners history. Highlights from Baseball Reference include phrases like “...set the record for X in their defeat of the Seattle Mariners,” and “hit a ball that stuck in the speaker,” and “fractured nasal cavity.”