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FanPost Friday: 13 games left vibe check

It’s getting darker earlier already, but the Mariners are raging against the dying of the light

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics
“I’m not looking at you dudes, I’m looking past ya”
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Hello and welcome back to FanPost Friday. Had to skip a few weeks for other site programming and also due to my own lack of bandwidth due to a recent job change (a good one!), but here we are back again with less than two weeks to go in the regular season.

Before we get into the VIBE CHECK, I want to sincerely thank everyone who came out to the First Annual Tim Cantu MemoriaLL SoftbaLL Game a few weeks back and also to everyone who came out to last Saturday’s gathering at Growler Guys in Lake City. Both were super fun events and it was so good to see new and familiar faces after not really seeing many people outside my little circle the last couple years. So, thank you all for making both events such a fulfilling, welcoming, and joyful time. No thank you, ever, to the Angels.

On that note, we’re meeting up at Growler Guys again this Saturday, September 24, since the Mariners are still on the road. Kelly at GG and the Mariners Bar League folks have been super accommodating and made the place a very pro-Mariners-fan-space which is not always the case at bars around the region, so we at LL really appreciate that. So come on out, have some beers, a big ol’ soft pretzel, maybe some hot dog specials, and cheer on the Mariners with some new and old pals.

Okay, on with the vibe check. Sheesh, it has been a rough last seven games. After thrilling series versus the Braves and Padres, the Mariners should have been ready to gently yet firmly sweep the disgraced, relegated, absolutely piss-poor Anaheim Angels and Oakland A’s into the dumpster where they belong. But, in tried and true AL West fashion, both teams took it upon themselves to be the wretched turd in the Mariners’ punch bowl that they so often are. Winning two games total in both series and postively struggling to score runs and cluster hits together was certainly not the plan Scott Servais and crew had in mind.

MLB: Seattle Mariners at Oakland Athletics
i am NOT entertained
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

So, what’s going on? Well, players are rarely 100% healthy at any given point in a baseball season, but that becomes especially true down the final stretch. And it’s just some rotten luck that nearly all the team’s top tier bats are “hurt, but not injured.” Except for Eugenio, who is missing a finger tip currently. It’s a bad scene.

Julio Rodríguez removing himself the game yesterday mid-inning was obviously horrifying for all of us, and now we wait and brace ourselves for what comes next.

The 2022 Mariners have more MLB-ready depth than any Mariners squad in recent memory, but even with some decent bench players it will be nearly impossible to fill the gaps left by injuries to Julio and Eugenio, Mitch Haniger’s also balky back, and Ty France continuing to slump. The unproven upside? Well, Jarred Kelenic is here and he played yesterday with a chip on his shoulder the size of a Washington State Ferry. So, maybe that will continue?

Obviously, I am concerned. Not so much about clinching a Wild Card spot, but more about having any ability to win a single playoff game, let alone a series. Anything can happen, though, and I’m trying to remain focused on the fact that a playoff berth hasn’t happened in 20 seasons here and this city and entire region is ready to ride or die for these Mariners and I can’t wait to experience it with y’all.

Here’s the last playoff-related VIBE CHECK, all the way back from July 29:

Pretty overwhelmingly positive! Let’s see how y’all are feeling now with this 13 GAMES LEFT VIBE CHECK:

Poll

Do you believe the Mariners will end the playoff drought this season?

  • 84%
    Yes
    (417 votes)
  • 5%
    No
    (25 votes)
  • 10%
    You gotta love these guys.
    (52 votes)
494 votes total Vote Now

Poll

What are you expectations for Jarred Kelenic the rest of 2022?

  • 37%
    He goes full savior-mode, absolutely mashes, and makes all doubters feel foolish
    (187 votes)
  • 55%
    He contributes some clutch hits, but still struggles a lot with strikeouts
    (280 votes)
  • 2%
    He breaks 10 bats and fights a teammate (and obviously wins)
    (12 votes)
  • 4%
    His production is terrible and he’s traded in the offseason
    (24 votes)
503 votes total Vote Now

Poll

If Julio’s back injury is significant...

  • 33%
    The team is dead in the water, playoffs or not
    (169 votes)
  • 12%
    They will be fine
    (65 votes)
  • 53%
    Why would you say such a thing???
    (271 votes)
505 votes total Vote Now
MLB: Chicago White Sox at Seattle Mariners
all too common :(
Lindsey Wasson-USA TODAY Sports

Poll

What happened to All-Star Ty France?

  • 2%
    He’s hurt badly
    (15 votes)
  • 68%
    He’s kinda hurt and also just slumping
    (345 votes)
  • 23%
    He’s gonna be fine
    (117 votes)
  • 5%
    HON HON HON, HOW DARE YOU!!!
    (26 votes)
503 votes total Vote Now

Poll

What on earth happened to Jesse Winker?

  • 6%
    Dead ball got ‘em
    (32 votes)
  • 7%
    Park factors?
    (38 votes)
  • 3%
    Age cliff got ‘em
    (15 votes)
  • 23%
    How did his swing ever work in the first place?
    (115 votes)
  • 8%
    Injuries?
    (41 votes)
  • 51%
    The world may never know.
    (254 votes)
495 votes total Vote Now
MLB: Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Poll

Most surprising Mariners player this season? (in a good way)

  • 7%
    Carlos Santana
    (37 votes)
  • 37%
    Sam Haggerty
    (189 votes)
  • 0%
    Dylan Moore
    (0 votes)
  • 10%
    George Kirby
    (52 votes)
  • 2%
    Andrés Muñoz
    (11 votes)
  • 40%
    Cal Raleigh
    (205 votes)
  • 0%
    Matt Festa
    (4 votes)
  • 1%
    Other, put your answer in the comments!
    (8 votes)
506 votes total Vote Now

Okay that’s all for this week! Let’s hope for a solid showing versus the Royals this weekend and a continued strong push to lock down a Wild Card spot. Once again, folks, remember this is rarified air we’re in here. Try to breathe it all in while we can, and just remember to breath in general. I hear it’s good for you.

Stay safe and go Mariners.