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Geoff Baker covers the Mariners for The Seattle Times. He provides daily coverage of the team throughout spring training, and during the season.

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April 11, 2008 6:45 PM

Angels game thread

Posted by Bob Condotta

MARINERS STRIKE FIRST ---- So it's finally over and the Mariners get the first game of 19 these two teams --- the two expected to vie for the AL West title --- will play this season. While really early, obviously, worth remembering that the Angels swept the Mariners in Anaheim in mid-April last season to set a tone for their domination of Seattle the rest of the season. The Angels won 13 of 19 against Seattle last year.

MARINERS BREAK OUT --- This is now a season-high eight runs for the Mariners coming on the heels of the first shutout of the season yesterday.

THANK YOU GARY MATTHEWS --- He's left five runners on in the last two innings allowing the Mariners to escape a couple jams and keep the lead. That wasn't pretty, but it could have been a lot worse.

MARINERS NOW HAVE 12 ERRORS --- After the back-to-back mishaps by Green and Sexson. No other AL team had more than nine entering the night.

MARINERS ADD A RUN --- Seattle takes 6-4 lead with some help from Gary Matthews, who dove and couldn't stop Ichiro's liner, allowing him to get to second. Ibanez then drove him in with his third extra base hit of the night, one fewer than he had in the first 10 games combined.

HE WAS DUE --- The three "struck out swingings'' on the scoreboard had to be blinding Vladimir Guerrero as he stood in the box that time. He finally broke through with a single up the middle making this one a lot tighter --- 5-4 with Sean Green now on to face Garret Anderson and two runners on.

TIMELY HITTING --- M's have just four hits but havve turned them into five runs tonight. And correction on Weaver --- he threw 102 pitches tonight.

WILKERSON DOUBLES RBI TOTAL --- Brad Wilkerson had just two RBI for the season before getting that little fly to land in center field and drive in two runs for the Mariners and give them a 5-3 lead. That was the 100th and last pitch from Jered Weaver who walked three batters in the inning. Sexson drew a bases-loaded walk to tie the game at 3-3. He has now had 13 full counts this season and has walked seven times and struck out six.

ANGELS TAKE 3-2 LEAD --- The Angels have the lead after Felix just couldn't come up with the ball on a broken bat little blooper off the bat of Casey Kotchman, allowing Garret Anderson to score. The Angels had earlier taken a 2-2 lead on a HR to center by Garry Matthews Jr. Seattle, however, might have caught a break there at the end of the inning as the out by Izturis appeared to be a foul ball.If nothing else they might have wanted Hernandez to throw a few more pitches. He has thrown 94 (57 strikes) and it looks now as if the Mariners bullpen will have to come into play for an inning or two at least.

WHY WOULD YOU WALK A GUY HITTING .069? --- I know Jered Weaver didn't want to do it. Still, one of the coldest hitters in baseball and he walks Johjima on four straight pitches? But he then gets Betancourt to get out of the inning, leaving it 2-1 at the end of five, the Mariners still with just two hits for the night and just five in their last 14 innings.

GOOD INNING FOR FELIX --- The fifth was the first 1-2-3 inning for Hernandez (there was a walk and a caught stealing in the first) and he ended with a 97 MPH fastball to strike out Chone Figgins, his 70th pitch of the night. It's 2-1 Seattle.

RAAUUUUULLLLL --- It's 2-1 after another no-doubt-about-it homer by Ibanez off of Weaver on a 2-1 pitch that appeared to be another fastball, if a little lower. It's the ninth two-HR game of his career --- he's never hit three in a game.

BIG PLAY BY BELTRE --- Hernandez didn't exactly look vulnerable there, but there were two on and one out before Beltre made a fine play on a smash by Maicer Izuris and turned it into an inning-ending double play.Much has been made of Seattle's defensive woes this season but tonight has been good so far, with the Johjima throw and now that. Hernandez has thrown 57 pitches through four innings.

ICHIRO'S FAVORITE TV SHOW IS PRISON BREAK --- That's what it says on the scoreboard right now. Not sure if that's new this year or not. I just remember them always telling us whaat his favorite coffee drink was..
Anyway, it's 1-1 after three and the Mariners have just one hit though they also have struck out just twice, for what that's worth. And the dancing grounds crew is doing a routine to Michael Jackson's Bad, a song I had thankfully forgotten about until now. The crowd seems to like it, however.

MATHIS NOW HAS TWO HRS AGAINST FELIX --- Just checking the stats and see that Mathis is now 3-7 in his career against Hernandez with two home runs. That's as many as any of the rest of the Angels including Guerrero, (who has two in 25 career ABs).

FELIX FINALLY GIVES UP A RUN --- Hernandez had gone the first 17 innings of the season without giving up an earned run before that homer by Jeff Mathis leading off the third inning. Mathis has just seven home runs in his career (though spanning just 240 at-bats).

M'S UP 1-0 THROUGH TWO --- Seattle clinging to a 1-0 lead after two innings as the offense has nothing other than the Ibanez homer. But Felix has been just as tough allowing just a walk (erased on a caught stealing on good throw by Johjima) and a broken-bat single. He has 28 pitches through two innings, 15 strikes.

MARINERS GET ON THE BOARD --- Looked like a big mistake from Jered Weaver there as Raul Ibanez smacked a high fastball deep into the seats in right-center to give the Mariners a 1-0 lead ending the first inning. Considering Felix Hernandez has yet to give up an earned run in 16 innings this season, any lead is a good lead in this game.

PRE-GAME --- Bob Condotta checking in again, filling in for the real baseball guys tonight.

I usually cover UW football and basketball, so if there are some inadvertent references to touchdowns or three-pointers I ask your forgiveness.

As for the game tonight, it's obviously a huge one if you've listened to the Mariners' promos all week --- October intensity in April or whatever.

John McLaren didn't go quite that far beforehand, saying "I can't say it's a do-or-die situation by any means. We just want to play well.''

Obviously he's right. The only time I covered baseball regularly was the Mariners in 1995 (and if you ever got to cover just one team for just one year, that was obviously it), vivid proof of how the start doesn't necessarily indicate the finish.

On the other hand, the big hope with this team was that it would make hay with its easy early schedule while the Angels struggled with two starters out. (Speaking of which, Mike Scioscia said before the game that John Lackey remains on schedule for a return in the first week or two of May while F-Rod may be able to pitch tonight depending on how a pre-game bullpen session went).

So far, no good, as Seattle is 4-6 while the Angels are 6-4. If the Angels get out of here with a lead of three games or more, the Mariners will be left making up ground at a time they hoped to be setting the pace.

I may not check in as prolifcally as Geoff but I'll try to keep this going throughout the game, so stay tuned.

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Posted by oregongal

7:01 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I'd be pretty happy if the Mariners scored a touchdown today. It'd be a start if they could match a two point conversion.

Welcome to the blog. If the game goes well, we'll be nice. If not, you'll wonder why Geoff puts up with us.

Yay, Felix Day!

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

7:19 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Yes!!!!!!

Posted by Mariner's Fan in Hawaii

7:21 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Ok I am stuck at the office...how was the K of Vlad? High heat or junk?

Posted by Batter Up!!!

7:24 PM, Apr 11, 2008

The King shows Maturity. Great comeback from a leadoff walk!

Posted by oregongal

7:26 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Felix is throwing everything tonight. Wicked slider along with the fastball.

Rauuuuuul!

And earlier Kenji had thrown Figgins out at first, but got a bad call. So two great throws from him already. Maybe it's his night to hit.

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

7:28 PM, Apr 11, 2008

wow, loving mlb.com. you'd think for 19.99/month, they could actually SHOW you the bottom of the 1st, rather than the screen flashing "MLB action back in just a moment". jerks!

Posted by oregongal

7:33 PM, Apr 11, 2008

tallahassee--I've heard more complaints about it already then I heard all of last year. You'd think they would know that the start of a new season would mean, I don't know, maybe a lot of people wanting their product all at once? Good luck.

Posted by Samuel L. Jackson

7:36 PM, Apr 11, 2008

The Mariners look awesome! Disregard every negative comment I have made about them in the past, for here on out it is all positive for me! At least until they blow a game in the 9th, make errors, don't hit with men on, etc.

Posted by downinthegroove

7:40 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Friday night with Felix pitching and more empty seats then I can count....

Hopefully people are realizing it is a poorly run organization and would rather watch on TV!

Posted by Pokenour

7:40 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Sexson - still loking for his first hit off Weaver. Why not Norton tonight? in lieu of Sexson - get another left hand batter in the lineup and one who might have a chance against Weaver.

Posted by ams

7:48 PM, Apr 11, 2008

God Sexson's defense is awful... Is there anything he doesn't suck at?

Posted by oregongal

7:49 PM, Apr 11, 2008

ams--Tallness?

Posted by downinthegroove

7:49 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Making Bavasi a contract genius!!

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

7:54 PM, Apr 11, 2008

your 2008 cy young winner, ladies and gentlemen!

Posted by Batter Up!!!

7:56 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Outstanding SO of Bad Vlad!!!
Man this guy want's to put the fat part of the bat on the ball no matter where it is.

Posted by oregongal

8:06 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I can't remember what Ichiro's favorite TV show was last year, but I remember thinking he had bad taste in television. This doesn't help him any, in my book.

Posted by Frankie

8:10 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I love how Anderson kinda shoved Beltre when he made the tag on him....

Just thought I would point that out.

Posted by oregongal

8:11 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Watching Beltre is almost enough to change my allegiance to catchers. Nice DP.

Posted by John

8:12 PM, Apr 11, 2008

This is obvious to everyone ... but we put absolutely no pressure on anyone.
Other than Raul tonight, it's just one meek out after another. This is getting really frustrating.

Posted by Batter Up!!!

8:14 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Gee, I guess Rauuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuul is 2 for 2!

The KIng is getting help from his friends.

Posted by oregongal

8:14 PM, Apr 11, 2008

And again, Rauuuuuul! Nice to give Felix another run to work with.

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

8:16 PM, Apr 11, 2008

i am getting really sick of vidro/sexson/wilkerson/kenji. but what do we do? we've got money/time invested in these guys, and they have a history of performing, so i guess we just have to wait and see. sure is frustrating. hopefully by the end of the year, 2 of these guys will be gone and we'll have balentein and clement in there. jeez!!

Posted by Paul

8:19 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Vidro and Joh can save their hits for later in the year if Raul is going to tag-team with Felix to win this one for us.

Posted by Paul

8:21 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Man, Felix's fastball is lookin' good tonight. He's throwing straight HEAT. I loved the 99mph heater in the dirt to get Vlad last time up.

Time to pick up some runs.

Posted by John

8:22 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Sticking with my theme of being negative, we can only hope Felix can go 9 innings tonight because I have no confidence our bullpen can hold a one-run lead.

Posted by Batter Up!!!

8:23 PM, Apr 11, 2008

The Big Dog is on a roll..........

Offense from 6-7-8 ??????

Posted by Pokenour

8:23 PM, Apr 11, 2008

If they do not perform, it seems to me that Vidro, Sexson, Wilkerson are disposable by mid-season - dfa despite their contracts, but I think Kenji should be given some time, although he might be flip flopped with Burke until he comes around. Balentiein should have started the season with the M/s in lieu of Wilkerson who was an unnecessary signing. Again there is a lack of commitment by Mariners management to go with young players.

Posted by Samuel L. Jackson

8:30 PM, Apr 11, 2008

When is Raul IBONDSnez up again? He is our only bright note so far tonight offensively. Felix has grown a ton from last year from what I can see. I stickin with the positives for now.

Posted by Pokenour

8:35 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Inanez for DH - good bat, slow of foot - need more defense in left - Wlad.

Posted by Paul

8:38 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Interesting how Felix seemingly has his best "stuff" tonight, yet he's struggling now much more than his other two starts. Maybe it's just the superior offensive lineup he's facing tonight...

Posted by oregongal

8:44 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Yay, Jose!!!

Now bring him home.

Posted by Pokenour

8:49 PM, Apr 11, 2008

At this point, how about Norton pinch hit for Sexson?

Posted by Batter Up!!!

8:52 PM, Apr 11, 2008

This it for sexson!

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

8:52 PM, Apr 11, 2008

mark my words--- if Sexson screws this up right now, he's done.

Posted by Samuel L. Jackson

8:59 PM, Apr 11, 2008

What a great signing by Bavasi! Where would we be without Wilkerson!

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

8:59 PM, Apr 11, 2008

eeehhh-oowwww-owwww-uhhh, eeeehhh--oooowww-ooowwww, eeehhhh, eehhhhuuuuu

Posted by PRchef

9:00 PM, Apr 11, 2008

YEEESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!

Finally something good for Felix.

Wilkerson comes through

Posted by Pokenour

9:00 PM, Apr 11, 2008

So that's a clutch base hit, good for Wilkerson.

Posted by Paul

9:01 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Well, Wilkerson was due I guess. And Richie continues to be patient. I'll take it, and I KNOW Felix will too.

Posted by oregongal

9:02 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I am loving this inning.

Posted by Paul

9:05 PM, Apr 11, 2008

That's an amazing set of stats for Richie...13 full counts this season in only 11 games.

7 walks.

6 K's.

ZERO balls put in play.

Crazy.

Posted by Batter Up!!!

9:05 PM, Apr 11, 2008

The Big Dog is Happy with the help from his Friends!

Aybar Robs Bentancourt.

Posted by Pokenour

9:09 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Sadly, Raul is again a step slow.

Posted by Batter Up!!!

9:13 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Yes & our DH is batting .132.

The King must throw extra pitches, the kids sit....... and Mac has no chance to play them.....

Posted by ams

9:15 PM, Apr 11, 2008

That's 4 straight games Raul has allowed a "double" to drop that shouldn't even be a hit.

I don't know how anyone can continue to argue it doesn't hurt the team. Just remember whatever happens from this point on (including Felix's pitch count) started with a double that should have been caught.

Also, those that argued last year's troubles were because of the hamstring injury have been proven wrong. Raul's actually gotten even slower it looks like.

Posted by downinthegroove

9:15 PM, Apr 11, 2008

112 pitches yet he was pulled with 97. This is why our manager is terrible....

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

9:18 PM, Apr 11, 2008

oh god, anyone but OF...

Posted by Samuel L. Jackson

9:20 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Not to be negative yet, but has Mel gone out to visit a pitcher yet this year? Just a question. I agree with downinthegroove and that I want to add that I could not believe a reliever was not up when the 7th inning began.

Posted by oregongal

9:24 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Ah, Ichiro.

Posted by Lance

9:26 PM, Apr 11, 2008

After removing Felix when throwing 97 pitches and eight innings of shutout ball against Baltimore McLaren lets him go over 110 against the Angels.

dave@ussm must simply be beside himself. What if Felix had gotten hurt!

Posted by Pokenour

9:28 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Ibanez to DH, Vidro dfa, Wlad to left.

Posted by Merrill

9:31 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Can't hit lefties, eh?

Just can't??

Posted by Batter Up!!!

9:33 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Gee! Maybe a kid that can run should have been in for Raul.

Mac really isn't very quick is he.

'I keep forgetting about the bench Mel. Mel wake up and help me out here'

Posted by Pokenour

9:36 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Bullpen management - closer by committee - will be crucial again tonight. Suppose McLaren wants to build up EOF's confidence tonight.

Posted by Pokenour

9:38 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Hard to field your position any worse than that Richie.

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

9:38 PM, Apr 11, 2008

booooooo sexson. boooooooooooo.

Posted by downinthegroove

9:40 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Does Mac know he has a bullpen and a bench or is he too busy just watching the game?

Posted by oregongal

9:42 PM, Apr 11, 2008

tallahassee--a very loudmouthed fan just got your comment across on TV. LOL

Posted by downinthegroove

9:42 PM, Apr 11, 2008

And if Beltre is not in the long term plans for this organization then neither is winning.

Posted by Merrill

9:44 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I thought this cat threw mid-90s heat???

(I had thought I read it here, never bothered to check...)

Posted by antsy in anaheim

9:44 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Someone tell Mel to go give Green a breather! Visit the mound!

Posted by Samuel L. Jackson

9:45 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Sexson, man the guy just makes it hard to stay positive with. When I think if any team in the league could use him at first, my answer is, umm no. But we are stuck with watching him trot out there every single game. OK, I'm a little negative now. I don't like the feel of this game at all. It's going to come down to managing again and I don't like our odds.

Posted by ams

9:45 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Mclaren's playing with fire this inning. Green's bad against lefties, plus he's losing his control.

Where's RRS??

Posted by Merrill

9:46 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Jeeze, 5 outs and a walk. Havin' a heart attack over here... Now climbing down off the ledge...

Posted by PRchef

9:46 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Insurance would be nice right here

Posted by PRchef

9:49 PM, Apr 11, 2008

How about a pinch runner for Richie Mac?

Posted by antsy in anaheim

9:50 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Somebody tell Mac he has a bench!

Posted by oregongal

9:50 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Thank you, PRchef. We certainly don't need to keep him in for defense.

Posted by downinthegroove

9:50 PM, Apr 11, 2008

fundamental baseball with you power hitters....Hmmm.

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

9:50 PM, Apr 11, 2008

now is the time to pitch hit burke!!! right?????

Posted by Batter Up!!!

9:51 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Finally, a runner for Sexson.....

Why didn't he come in when he was on 1st?

Posted by PRchef

9:52 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Oregongal

I think I just saw a ghost, wait, never mind, it's just Cairo.

Posted by oregongal

9:53 PM, Apr 11, 2008

fundamental baseball with you power hitters....Hmmm.

So funny and so sad all at once.

Posted by Merrill

9:53 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Wouldn't this be the time to bring in Jimerson?

O yeah....

Nice piece of hitting there by Richie, but did I read that right??? Infield single???

BTW, downie, Felix was pulled last week because he didn't feel right. Obviously, this time he did. Shows maturity to admit it last week, and good managing to listen, both times.

Posted by downinthegroove

9:54 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Being on the M's bench is like being a kicker for a NFL team. Best seat in the house and very little use.

Posted by PRchef

9:55 PM, Apr 11, 2008

JOOOOOOOOOOOOOHHHHH!!!!!!

Finally!

Posted by Merrill

9:55 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Wow, a bench appearance!

Posted by oregongal

9:55 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I know I've said it before, but I love Kenji. Good for him.

Posted by markus

9:55 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I thought of a situation Mac could have pinch ran with Jimerson. Honestly, does Mac even know that he has a bench and doesn't have to let Sexson run the bases in the 8th?

Posted by Merrill

9:57 PM, Apr 11, 2008

There's your TD, Oregongal!

That's why you ride with who brung ya... not that they've brung us anywhere yet...

Posted by downinthegroove

9:58 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I don't buy that he didn't feel good with one inning to go. He admitted he is scared to pitch high counts after last year.

Ya run out what ya got until it doesn't work or numbers add up. He was working. 85% of Felix is better than the bullpen.

Posted by markus

9:58 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Does Cairo have naughty pics of Mac and Bavasi? honestly, why did we keep this dead weight on the team? It's a little frustrating that Cairo is still around, I won't lie.

Posted by oregongal

9:59 PM, Apr 11, 2008

It was great to see the middle of the order get some hits and runs tonight. But watching Yuni is just plain fun.

Posted by Pokenour

10:00 PM, Apr 11, 2008

A base short, McLaren is at least getting the idea of pinch running for the tall guy, maybe it will even improve the defense.

Posted by PRchef

10:02 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Move over Burke

I have a new hero and his name rhymes with looney

Posted by oregongal

10:04 PM, Apr 11, 2008

MARINERS NOW HAVE 12 ERRORS --- After the back-to-back mishaps by Green and Sexson. No other AL team had more than nine entering the night.

In the spirit of keeping positive tonight (since we're winning)--we're number one!

Posted by Pokenour

10:05 PM, Apr 11, 2008

It looks like batting second has helped Jose and Yuni is tearing it up, maybe it is best to leave this part of the order alone.

Posted by Merrill

10:06 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I think at some point the analysis stops and the listening begins. Not for me to decide where that point is for you, downie, but that's my thinking, anyway...

...And the two-point conversion is good!

Posted by Merrill

10:08 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Thanks for the laugh, Oregongal!

What's going on, anyone? Both my Gamecast and Gameday are stuck on Yuni's triple.

New pitcher?

Posted by jon

10:09 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Geoff, Bob, Someone...

What is better....Sliding into first like Raul in the 8th or running thru the bag.

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Posted by ams

10:09 PM, Apr 11, 2008

These guys need to pull their heads out. The defense has been GOD AWFUL tonight.

Posted by oregongal

10:11 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Merrill- Mark Lowe's got 2 out in the 9th.

Posted by CHEMDORK

10:11 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Bob - I like the format of the game thread with the titles for each entry, and a ton of them there are. And you said you might not post much.

Great job! Thanks for filling in.

What an exciting game, a bit of everything!!

Posted by Walrus

10:12 PM, Apr 11, 2008

This has to be a record for Joh today....most pitches he has seen as a batter in a day

Posted by downinthegroove

10:13 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Question is exactly what are you listening to? Hmmmmm....

I got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell ya!

Posted by CHEMDORK

10:13 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Lowe is throwing bb's!

Posted by oregongal

10:13 PM, Apr 11, 2008

jon-(imagine this in a Ben Stein monotone) Running through is faster. There are all kinds of studies about it. I think maybe he was trying to get under a tag. At least, I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt tonight.

Posted by sjazzdude

10:15 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Even though Johjima got that base hit, he's still not out of his funk. You can see in his stance that his body is opening up before he even swings the ball. He has absolutely no power behind his swing because he's transferring his weight to the front like a golf swing.

Posted by CHEMDORK

10:16 PM, Apr 11, 2008

jon - increasing one's friction is going do decrease their speed, but I don't think most baseball players have taken a physics class.

Posted by Merrill

10:18 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Running through the bag is faster. Ichiro made that point about his not diving for balls before the season began.

Markus, I share your Cairo frustration. Jimerson should be there for speed and OF defense. I don't think Bloomie's enough--he's your corner OF/infielder guy. Now there's no real CF guy, and Morse hasn't quite learned OF yet.

I like having Norton, though.

Thanks, Oregongal!

Wow... nice to see the BP get it done (I reloaded both GC and GD, and one of them finally worked--MLB.com's Gameday, this time).

Could it be the beginning of a trend??? (No, I will not allow myself to hope, yet, that the offense is untracked...)

Posted by Pokenour

10:19 PM, Apr 11, 2008

"closer by committee" worked - a first for everything, good that Felix is rewarded with a win. But again, I am not sold on McLaren's game management. The pinch runner was a base late, no defensive replacement for Raul in the ninth (not to disrespect his great night at the plate. Close call with Green, but in this one, all is well that ends well.

Posted by oregongal

10:21 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Bloomquist dove head first into first last season and was thrown out (not the first time he's done that). Afterwards, he said he knows it's slower, but instinct takes over and he just can't help himself.

Posted by Merrill

10:22 PM, Apr 11, 2008

downie... HAR!

Posted by downinthegroove

10:22 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I agree. Terrible management. And boy do they miss G.S.....

Posted by oregongal

10:23 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Bob, I second CHEMDORK. Thanks for the care and feeding. Hope you'll come back.

Posted by Merrill

10:27 PM, Apr 11, 2008

downie, who are you agreeing with? Scrolled up but couldn't figure it out...

And who is GS?

Inquiring minds and all that...

Posted by sjazzdude

10:27 PM, Apr 11, 2008

This is a game we barely escaped. Green just about gave the game away with his erratic pitching and that throwing error to second. He needs to be sent down to Tacoma for R.A. Dickey. In fact, I'd like to see Dickey as a starter and move Batista to the bullpen. We need some stability down in the pen.

I can't believe McLaren lined up Vidro, Sexson, Wilkerson and Johjima in that order. Talk about a lineup of futility. The combination of their batting averages barely breaks .100. If it wasn't for Ibanez, this game would have been ugly. Good thing Raul was keyed in on Weaver. Thanks Raul, you are definitely the AL player of the week.

Posted by Kent in Kent

10:28 PM, Apr 11, 2008

That was a great game blog, Bob! Good entries, and lots of 'em. Thanks!

Posted by downinthegroove

10:30 PM, Apr 11, 2008

McLaren is an idiot. He watches the game. He does not manage at all. He has never been asked to make decisions and he still does not.

The only evaluation or assessment of a game you get from him is after all is over and then he will make a decision.

I love his quote that we are such a good defensive ball team...although they lead the league in errors....

Posted by John

10:30 PM, Apr 11, 2008

No one has mentioned this, but the Angles have some serious problems in their bullpen ... more than Seattle. I know they're missing K-Rod, but from what I saw, they're bullpen is going to get knocked around a little.
Lowe looked great tonight. If he can put a whole season together and Morrow comes back halfway decent, we're going to have a nice pen. If Rhodes can help get lefties out, and EOF puts it together or Rowland-Smith keeps it going, things are looking up.

Posted by downinthegroove

10:32 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Who did I say I agree with?

George Sherrill.

Posted by Frankie

10:33 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Well, I would have blogged throughout this game, but I didn't move from my couch for 9 innings and I didn't want to either (i'm superstitious like that).

But the M's won, no matter how sloppy or gut-wrenching it was. One game out right now isn't bad at all, especially with Silva and Bedard going tomorrow and Sunday.

Props to Raul tonight for an amazing night at the plate, Felix for a good outing (even though he gave up 4 runs), and Sexson/Wilkerson/Johjima for working the counts late in the game and finally breaking through.

Except for the defense, I like what I saw tonight. Ichiro had a bad day, but we all know that he's Ichiro and he will make up for it.

One down, two to go!!!

Posted by oregongal

10:34 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Merrill-I didn't see the comment, but GS is usually George Sherrill.

Posted by Pokenour

10:37 PM, Apr 11, 2008

In one other point of analysis, despite Richie Sexson's walk, he remains 0 for 11 against Weaver. One wonders why he even started the game given this history and the newly called up Norton who is a switch hitter batting left handed against Weaver who seems to suffer against lefty's a bit. One wonders what McLaren is thinking, again I am not very confident with his game management despite the victory.

Posted by Merrill

10:42 PM, Apr 11, 2008

CHEMDORK, I don't think diving is going to increase friction. In fact, due to aerodynamics, one would guess friction would be reduced.

But the key point is that the legs stop pumping their force. This reduction in force is more than the decrease in friction due to aerodynamics. That's why it's slower. Friction has almost nothing to do with it.

Posted by Merrill

10:46 PM, Apr 11, 2008

ah, yeah, of course, what a goober, thanks downie and Oregongal.

Posted by downinthegroove

10:22 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I agree. Terrible management. And boy do they miss G.S.....

Downie, my question was, I couldn't figure out who you were agreeing with in this comment. But I got the general gist from your follow-up and the general thread. Thanks.

Posted by Maui Mariner

10:49 PM, Apr 11, 2008

I had such a great time watching the game that I couldn't even post.
I agree with Frankie, great game all around.
It was just an exciting game, the bad and the good and especially the win.
Let's see what Silva can do tomorrow, at least this one will be on TV so my computer will be free for posts.
Hey, life is tough here on Maui for a Mariner's fan
Aaaaaloha
Go M's

Posted by Merrill

10:50 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Hey, that's weird. I put the end-italics HTML command after your comment, downie, not after your post title.

Posted by CHEMDORK

10:51 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Merril - Not air friction. When you slide, your foot and leg "slide" along the ground, causing friction. This is why you don't slide forever and why it can sometimes also make your leg hot. So, Yes, there is a hell of a lot more friction than when you are running. Your foot on the ground running also causes friction, this is why when you run you go somewhere and don't slip, but the surface area of your foot is less than your whole leg, so you are wrong, friction increased significantly. Thanks though...

Posted by oregongal

10:53 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Merrill, I've tried italics in a couple of comments and only the first paragraph was affected. Maybe it's like quotation marks where you need new ones at the beginning of each paragraph.

Posted by CHEMDORK

10:54 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Merril - but this is a blog about baseball. Running through is faster than sliding everytime, the only reason to slide is to prevent overrunning a base or to avoid a tag. Sliding into first is a huge pet peeve of mine.

Posted by oregongal

10:55 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Ah, another late night science talk. OK, early late night. It's been a while. :)

Posted by Merrill

11:03 PM, Apr 11, 2008

CHEMDORK, I (and you, and everyone before that) was talking about diving (note my 10:42 post and the others' before it), not sliding. And hey, your comment about "this is a baseball blog"--maybe I'm misreading that, but you were the one who brought up physics.

Personally, though, I like talking about physics. I'm usually wrong (remember slapping me down on the humidity thing last year, Oregongal?), and I get to exercise my brain and learn even if I am.

But, hey, now that I know you were talking about sliding, your earlier comment makes sense.

Oregongal, yeah, that makes sense. Thanks, I'll remember that.

Posted by CHEMDORK

11:03 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Looks like it cleared the room, wasn't trying to talk science, just trying to answer jon's question. Can't help it though, love baseball becasue of the science and strategy involved in it.

Sorry, I'll try to temper it.

Posted by GeoW

11:05 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Just home from the game - what an exciting evening! It was disappointing that there were less than 30,000 fans at the game, however. To all the many comments above, I'd like to add something positive about Sexson. His patience in swinging at strikes and taking balls, and ultimately getting that 2-out bases loaded walk, was the turning point of the game. Last year's version of Sexson would have been waving wildly at those outside pitches and likely would have struck out - this year is refreshingly different. (Beating out a slow roller to 3rd was pretty neat as well).

Posted by Merrill

11:17 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Whoops, my bad, CHEMDORK, Jon was indeed talking about sliding, not diving.

Sorry!

Posted by joe in seattle

11:24 PM, Apr 11, 2008

Good job on the blog, Bob. Every once in awhile, it's better to just read the facts and stay away from the opposing philosphies.

Joh finally got the monkey off his back tonight. It's about time as he's been having trouble since last year. He doesn't seem to have the technique of other hitters.

I would have preferred Guillen in OF, but my jury's still out on Wilky.

Raul, in my mind, is quite the stud and I'm willing to deal with his speed challenges. If Mac gives him a breather now and then, he'll be fine.

Speaking of mlb.com, which package is better, the $14.99 or the $19.99 tier? Is the service worth it so far?

That's it for now....

Peace.

Posted by oregongal

11:59 PM, Apr 11, 2008

CHEMDORK, I agree, but then I'm a geologist geek. Merrill and I really "met" last year when we started talking about humidity in the middle of the night. I don't think Geoff will ever forget that.

GeoW, thanks for the comments. I'm not a Sexson fan, but I do appreciate his patience at the plate so far. I could not have been happier when he walked tonight. Still don't understand why Mac didn't put in a pinch runner for him when he was on first, though.

Posted by GeoW

12:07 AM, Apr 12, 2008

Oregongal - Agreed. If you're going to pinch run in that situation, you need to do it right away. Beyond increasing the success of the bunt, having some speed at 1st would have put some extra pressure n the pitcher/catcher.

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