Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Monday, June 13, 2005

M's Weekly Thoughts

Alright, so another week down, a week of a huge high (great Florida series) and huge lows (entire Washington series). Let's dive on in...

1. Ryan Franklin should not be a starter. John Levesque, who I normally find vapid and worthless as a writer, actually threw out a real stat. Ryan Franklin has only had six quality starts in the 12 games he's been on the mound. This is because Ryan Franklin is a mediocre pitcher. If he was with the Red Sox and had six runs behind him he could survive, with us he can't strike anyone out and we can't give him the benefit of the doubt not to suck. Time for him to go... he is a quality bullpen guy who would immediately provide some solid upgrade.

2. Bret Boone is done. Stick a fork in him. His at-bats have looked consistently awful. He is not drawing out the count. He is not even fouling pitches straight back. He is popping the ball up in either the infield or shallow outfield. Every single time. I'm also sick and tired of hearing "and the ball goes past a diving Boone into the outfield." It's the new mantra. Look, we don't have strikeout pitchers. We need people who can cover ground. Boone cannot cover anything. Time for him to go.

3. Matt Morse is... okay. Look, I was in favor of bringing him up. However, every game he does something insanely stupid and has already cost us several runs and at least two games. He is loose with the glove. His bat looks nice, he appears to have a decent idea of the strike zone, but I'll believe that better when a few teams get a more detailed scouting report on him. Frankly, I'll be fine with Pokey Reese when it comes to it.

4. Rene Rivera needs to play two out of five games. I love Pat Borders and what he's bringing to our pitching staff, but Rivera can flat out rake apparently, and can rake doubles. Again, let's see what adjustments are made, but there hasn't been a large drop-off between him and Borders defensively (unlike with Miguel Olivo) and he doesn't look as overwhelmed as Morse has at times.

5. Between Morse and Rivera the bottom of our lineup has actually looked decent. It hasn't been the Valdez/Olivo black hole of the first quarter of the year. Just that could be the reason to keep Morse around once Pokey returns. Still, the defense/errors/baserunning mistakes outweigh the positives of this point.

6. Ichiro is flat out killing us. I mentioned earlier this week that it was great we were starting to win without Ichiro. Now I can write that we are losing BECAUSE of Ichiro. If he was on in Washington we win two of those games. He had men in scoring position every single time he was up, and most of the time it was a man on third with nobody out. He's either weakly rolling it to first or flying out to shallow left. Because his swing is so similar it's hard to recommend changes, but until he comes around we will continue to struggle.

7. We still need more power. We need easier runs, especially while we struggle with men in scoring position. Bring back Bucky, bring up Snelling, bring up Lopez. We need multiple people who can hit it out of the park 20 times a year. Beyond Sexson we have no one...

8. When you have trouble hitting with men in scoring position is it luck? Sorta. Is it because you are mediocre as a team? Yep. When a few mediocre hitters get on base, it is luckier to ask for a third to bring them home. The truth is that we have a bunch of mediocre hitters. It's time to shake things up (by bringing up the aforementioned prospects).

9. Jeff Clement looks and sounds like a stallion. Anyone who became a Mariner fan while living in the Midwest deserves to be drafted by us. Clement and Rivera could be a tremendous backstop combination for us in the future (and actually give us some power behind the plate). Look for him in a year (midseason next year).

10. The bullpen is not as good as we would like to fool ourselves into believing it to be. Who do we have real confidence in outside of Eddie Guardado? Putz looks lost, even though he has great stuff. Hasegawa is Hasegawa. Villone keeps giving up extra base hits. Nelson is still letting people on base at a .400 clip. Thornton deserves to be let go. Mateo is our best pitcher outside of Guardado yet is stuck in long relief. Can Hargrove please separate the wheat from the chaff, make some moves and stick with them?

11. The next person who says Joel Piniero is back gets the "loser of the week" award. Just watch him pitch. He is done.

Philly and the Mets come into town, in time for Philly to hopefully get cold and for Pedro Martinez to shut us down! Bam!

posted by Gavin @ 3:38 PM  0 comments


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