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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 15, 2008 8:46 PM

Viva la sacrifice fly!

Posted by Larry Stone

I'm going to keep this short and sweet, because I've got kids that want me home by bed time (too late for that already).

This was a long, cold, sloppy night in which the Mariners tied a major league record with five sacrifice flies, and Jose Lopez tied an individual major-league mark with three sac flies in one game. It's now been done 12 times in history -- the last by Edgar Martinez in 2002. Lopez actually had a chance to break the mark, but he blew it by singling with Willie Bloomquist on third base in the fifth inning. I'm sure he'd rather have the base hit than the sac fly record.

Now the Mariners are off on the a pretty big road trip to face two AL West rivals -- the A's, who are playing great ball, and the Angels again. The Bedard question is still hovering over this team, so things are still uneasy. R.A. Dickey was confirmed as the Friday starter against the Angels. The hope is that Bedard will now be ready to start on April 24 against Baltimore, the day he is eligible to come off the DL. Until Bedard shows that he's healthy and can string together a few starts, however, his future has to remain a question mark. And so does the long-term hopes of this team.

Geoff returns full-time to his blog on Wednesday, a homecoming I'm sure you all will celebrate. It's been fun, but this is his show, and I am happy to turn the keys back over to him.

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Posted by wayupwaydown

9:10 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Well let's all hope Erika feels better soon.

Posted by oregongal

9:17 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Larry, I always enjoy your humor, ala Jose "blowing it" by hitting a single.

Posted by Get Griffey

10:11 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Nice fill-in job Larry!
Keeping us bloggers in(and on) line isn't the easiest thing to do so we appreciate the work you have done. ^_^

Posted by stango

10:29 PM, Apr 15, 2008

Larry,

Thanks a lot for filling in. I've been reading you since I used to read the actual newspaper.

If I were a sports writer, I don't think I'd have a blog either. Seems pretty time consuming. The nice thing on my end, is that I don't have to read everything everyone says everyday.

I can't imagine how exhausting it would be.

Posted by AK1984

11:08 PM, Apr 15, 2008

At this point in time, Jeff Clement, Wladimir Balentien, and Jeremy Reed are all way more produtive than Richie Sexson, Jose Vidro, and Miguel Cairo.

Hell, I'd be willing to part with an overhyped prospect like Brandon Morrow -- whose lack of depth and versatility within his pitching repertoire will prevent him from ever being a successful starting pitcher -- solely to dump the massive salaries of Richie Sexson (2008: $14,000,000) and Jose Vidro (2008: $8,500,000 {$2,500,000 paid for by the Washington Nationals} & 2009: $?,???,??? {$500,000 buyout if option doesn't vest}) upon an offensively inept ballclub like the San Francisco Giants. With the lowly Giants, Sexson could replace the platoon of Rich Aurilia and Daniel Ortmeier at first base and Vidro might be an adequate pinch hitter in the National League.

The thought of Jeff Clement as the designated hitter, Brad Wilkerson at his natural position of first base rather than stuck screwing up in right field, and Jeremy Reed as the fourth outfielder -- who'd be recalled after Cairo was designated for assignment -- would be not only be a magnificant move at this moment, but also a step toward the right direction in the future.

Posted by dadling

11:31 PM, Apr 15, 2008

It's April...the bat's won't get hot until the weather does.....that means late May & June.....

And though it's true, certain players look more productive, at the moment & in different competition levels, it's not yet time to panic, or, use the Sonic's strategy on rebuilding to win.....

This is a warm weather team....if the farmers almanac is right, it'll be a hot summer.....and the Mariners should rise with the temp's........

We'll know by the All Star break.......

Posted by tallahassee-mariner's fan

6:38 AM, Apr 16, 2008

I don't think putting Clement at DH is in the team's longterm best interest. The guy is young, and has a lot of potential to catch and continue improving as a catcher, which is one of the toughest jobs in the game. As a Catcher, he has the innate talent to post incredible offensive numbers; as a DH, he'd be competing against Bonds types, and he'd probably be more average, relatively speaking. Plus, don't we want to trade johji for Griffey? Lets not bring him up prematurely and stunt his development as a catcher, UNLESS we're committed to having him catch at least a couple of times a week.

Posted by Ziasudra

6:39 AM, Apr 16, 2008

I suspect many of you would get muscle tightness trying to do sporadic strenuous things in 40 degree weather - let's wait 'til the weather warms up a bit for a better evaluation of the team.
By the way, while you are cleaning ot the dead wood on the roster - how about dumping Willie? After all, he takes two AB's to get a hit (not counting the walks, which are just the pitcher messing up. . . .).

Posted by Mr. X

7:00 AM, Apr 16, 2008

Jose Lopez, run producer. Believe it.

Posted by Mr. X

7:06 AM, Apr 16, 2008

And don't look now, but at this point in the season, we have the 2nd best Suzuki in the AL West. LOL

Posted by Chuck

7:11 AM, Apr 16, 2008

Hey, Sac flies are great. Its a way to drive home runs. Its part of being a team player. Like hitting to the right side to move runners over. Its called "team ball." Something lacking in M's team since Melvin was the boss.

Posted by ethan

7:23 AM, Apr 16, 2008

who's starting on Saturday? i have tix and i need to know how drunk i need to get. thanx

Posted by Adam

7:37 AM, Apr 16, 2008

Ever wonder about that extra little turn Bedard makes with his hips during his windup? Here's a possibly ominous article by a licensed physical therapist:

http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/fantasy/article/erik-bedard-windup-worries/

Posted by byebyeSexson

7:50 AM, Apr 16, 2008

The other day I went into this Big Box Store. Bought a couple of cases, a big bag of dog food, a huge bag of chips, and a 50 pound bag of mixed nuts. When I finally got it all out of the car and in the house, I came down with "costochondritis."

That Costco is a tough place to shop.

Only one starter went hitless. He did get a big ovation from Sims though. Something like, "Good eye Big Guy!" It will help our Big Guy if he can continue to be patient but I hope he can sprinkle a single or two in amoung thee walks.

Go Richie! Go M's!

Posted by sjazzdude

8:16 AM, Apr 16, 2008

This is also the way close games are won. In fact, with Safeco being a more pitcher friendly stadium, you would think the Ms would play this style of game instead of relying on the homerun. Yeah, the homerun is exciting to see, but it sure is alot easier to sacrifice and move the runners over than to jack one over the fence.

Posted by Idaho Invader

8:19 AM, Apr 16, 2008

That is amazing, its hard to get even ONE guy home on a sac fly!!

Signed,

Adrian Beltre
Richie Sexson

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