Advertising

The Seattle Times Company

NWjobs | NWautos | NWhomes | NWsource | Free Classifieds | seattletimes.com

Mariners


Our network sites seattletimes.com | Advanced

Mariners Blog

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

E-mail Geoff| Mariners Forum| RSS feeds Subscribe | Blog Home

July 12, 2008 9:01 AM

Video tour of trip, Kauffman Stadium

Posted by Geoff Baker

So, I thought we'd get away from baseball talk just a bit this morning. Here's our latest video. I took it on the trip to Kansas City, from Houston, Texas, where I'd bunked over at the airport hotel after barely catching that harried flight out of San Francisco right after the game in Oakland on Thursday. It was the best way to make it here on-time, with the time difference, instead of having to wake up at 4 a.m. and fight rush hour traffic to be at yesterday's game. And you thought this job was just sitting in a chair, crunching some numbers and trying to sound like an expert? Hah. Anyhow, you'll see the drive in to KC, to the Country Club Plaza section of town, then back off to the ballpark, Kauffman Stadium, which is right next to Arrowhead Stadium, home of the NFL Chiefs. Then, we take a tour of Kauffman Stadium, which opened in 1973 and is presently undergoing a $250 million renovation. Most of it will be done by Opening Day 2009. But they've already installed an HD video scoreboard, one of the largest in the country. They plan to build a concourse with restaurants all along the back of the stadium, behind the outfield fence. And they'll put seats atop those famed waterfalls behind the fance as well. Hope you enjoy it!

OK, I lied, we will talk a little baseball. Been reading from a lot of you (and not specifically Brian L., there have been plenty, he was just the latest to raise the issue) that Erik Bedard, when he's actually in games, is performing exactly the way he did in Baltimore, so none of us should be surprised. Sorry, I just can't stand to listen to that any longer. Those of you who want to make this into a pitch count thing, well, I'm sure you know better. It's not about the pitch counts. It's about the innings Bedard is throwing with those pitch counts. The guy Seattle traded five players for had 14 starts last season of at least seven innings. This season, he has only three. None since May.

He had only five starts last season in which he didn't go at least six innings. This year, he's already had eight starts of fewer than six frames.

That's the beef in a nutshell. Anyone with ace pretensions has to be able to go seven innings on a regular basis and let the bullpen be set up in the best possible way. Bedard is not doing what he did last season. Not even close. So please, let's stop saying otherwise. Maybe he's hurt, true. But the bottom line is, he has not produced what was expected. Has not delivered the innings of a top-of-the-rotation starter.

As for Luke Hochevar, I'm well aware of who he is. Know all about his stuff, his potential. So far, though, he's been mediocre. Had given up 13 runs over 10 innings in his last two starts. Had gone more than six innings against only one other AL team, that being the Baltimore Orioles, and that start came back in early May. Make that two teams. The M's have a habit out of making any young pitcher with potential look good lately. Which was kind of the point being made. Yes, he'd look good in Seattle's rotation right now.

Digg Digg | Newsvine Newsvine

Submit a comment

*Required Field



Type the characters you see in the picture above.

Posted by 1996Coug

9:41 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Amen. Bedard is just another of a long line of failed Mariner acquisitions. I have no idea why we're so cursed. We've succeeded a few times, but when we fail, we end up making those 'worst of the decade' lists.

Posted by BrianL

9:44 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Geoff, that wasn't in response to you. That's in response to the people who are trotting out the "Erik Bedard is a wuss" argument every day.

Something is wrong with Bedard. His swinging strike rate is down and he's not getting his curveball over. That suggests something's wrong with his delivery to the plate. I have no idea what, but if he's been hiding a shoulder problem or his hip problem hasn't healed, then that would go a long way to explain his ineffectiveness.

And it is a bit of a stretch to accuse me of saying "EriK Bedard is performing exactly the way he did in Baltimore." I don't believe I said that. What I did say is that Erik Bedard is throwing the exact same number of pitches he threw in Baltimore, which is in response to (again) the people who accuse him of being soft.

So, Geoff, no that wasn't directed at you and I'm sorry if you interpreted it as being that way. I'd prefer it if you didn't put words in my mouth.

Posted by macdoubter

9:52 AM, Jul 12, 2008


The M's have a habit out of making any young pitcher with potential look good lately.

Lately? I know you've only been covering the Ms for the past two seasons, but really, it seems like the past 4-5 seasons the Ms have always done this. The announcers always give the excuse, "well, there's not a lot of film to watch on this guy." Maybe that's part of it. But if that was simply the case, then theoretically, a new young pitcher with no film would win 20 games his first season, right? Well, I guess he would if the only team he faced was Seattle.

By the way, nice tour video.

Posted by ferrari

10:16 AM, Jul 12, 2008

I think you forgot to mention that the expectations for this guy, since we gave up 5 players for him, may have been a bit high. He's never thrown 200 innings.

I think you're placing too much blame on Bedard and not enough on the FO. After all, Bedard is who he is-- he's not going to perform better because we traded 5 players for him, as opposed to 3 or 4.

Posted by NB

10:18 AM, Jul 12, 2008

I thought we didn't have favorites and whipping boys on this blog.

Maybe just not the same ones eh?

Posted by Chuck

10:20 AM, Jul 12, 2008

This year the Ms are making all the pitchers they face look good. And count me among those that say that we are getting what was advertised in Baltimore when we were dealing for Bedard. He didn't pitch 200 innings ayear, he is a lights out lefty, and he has an injury history. I agree with Brian in that without the nagging injures--resulting in just missing the corners, or his command being off to the point that hitters are not swinning at balls just off the corners, he could stretch his pitch count into seven innings. I will repeat again--the problems of the Ms can be corrected if the hitters just start hitting.

Posted by BrianL

10:22 AM, Jul 12, 2008

I know what the expectations for him were, I was firmly entrenched in the anti-trade crowd because I felt six years of Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, and Tim Butler were more valuable to us than two years of Erik Bedard. All of that aside, it's silly to bash Bedard in the way that a lot of people here have been doing.

It's not Bedard's fault the FO overpaid for him.

Posted by zona

11:07 AM, Jul 12, 2008

"Anyone with ace pretensions..."

Come on Geoff, if anybody pretended Bedard was the ace, it certainly wasn't him. The duo of Bavasi & McLaren crowned him as the ace before the ink was dry on his contract. As I recall, when the press asked him about being the #1 starter, he said those things don't matter to him, and that was coming from someone else. It's not fair to say that he pretends to be the ace..

I suspect he's doing the best he can under the circumstances, and is trying to work through some nagging injuries without making a big production out of it. If he were to use injuries as an excuse, he would be criticized even more for that.

Posted by Lenny Randle's Breath

11:09 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Thanks for squeezing in another video Geoff. I enjoy being able to see the different ballparks.

I don't mind having Bedard in our rotation. Trades take time to see if they were good or not. Although the B word had his hand in it so... I think he's been hurt this year. Although you may know if he's unhappy playing in Seattle.

Posted by fc

11:13 AM, Jul 12, 2008

I got excited when I first looked at the title without my glasses, I thought it said "Vidro takes a trip"

Posted by Thomas

11:13 AM, Jul 12, 2008

no expert here and I don't know if there is a way to quantify this, but it sure seems that Bedard gets squeezed by the umpires more frequently than anyone else. some guys are just hard luck guys. it may not be the only cause, but it certainly may be one reason why his innings count has been so low thus far.

Posted by scrapiron

11:35 AM, Jul 12, 2008

I've posted it before, and I'll post it again. PQS grades every start from 0-5. 0-2 is considered a disaster start, 4-5 is considered a dominant start. He's already had as many disaster starts as he did all last year, and he'd have to throw one more PQS4 start and 14 dominant PQS5 starts to be where he was at last year. In other words, he should not have another poor outing the rest of the year if he's going to be the same '07 Bedard.

Erik Bedard PQS scores
2007
PQS0 - 2
PQS1 - 0
PQS2 - 1
PQS3 - 4
PQS4 - 3
PQS5 - 18

2008
PQS0 - 4
PQS1 - 0
PQS2 - 1
PQS3 - 4
PQS4 - 2
PQS5 - 4

Posted by Seth Cotner

11:36 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Geoff, since the on the field game is not worth talking about, can we talk about the off the field speculation a bit? Seems to be the only thing that is interesting with the M's these days.

Again on ESPN, I heard:

-Twins were interested in Beltre
-Diamondbacks were interested in Ibanez
-Cardinals were interest in Bedard

Have you heard if there is any validity to these or of any other potiential deals in the works?

Posted by argh100

11:40 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Bedard's average innings per start is the 2nd lowest of his career so far this year and it's way down -- last year it was over 6 and right now he's barely over 5. The one thing in his line that jumps right out at you is that his walk rate is way up. That seems to almost entirely account for the difference because his other rates appear to be holding within statistical noise levels. It could be an international conspiracy of umpires but personally I think he's got continuing injury problems that are affecting his control.

Posted by Miles

11:41 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Thanks for the tour Geoff. Those are really great for those of us who've never been to those parks.

Posted by scottM

11:49 AM, Jul 12, 2008

Haiku #13 (Donovan will like this one)


BB, Mac and Rich
M's are running in the ditch
Season of the witch

Posted by headliner

12:28 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Does anyone know, or know how to find, the average number of runs scored per game by the AL teams? Thanks

Posted by doug

12:39 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Bedard is truely awful, if you dont see that he is pretty much the problem with the P staff then i dont knowwhat to tell ya. get off his jock?

Posted by scottM

12:40 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Google MLB Team Stats, divide # of games into runs scored:

M's '08 = 3.9 runs per game
MLB avg = 4.6 runs per game
leader, Texas Rangers = 5.5 runs per game

Posted by Pygmalion

12:58 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Bedard doesn't have "ace pretensions." It was the Mariners and the media who had pretensions of Bedard being an ace. Those were the people talking about Bedard being an ace. He wasn't as good as advertised - but he didn't do the advertising.

Posted by GripS

1:34 PM, Jul 12, 2008

I have only recently become a fan of baseball. Figures I would become a fan on a year where the Mariners seem to be at their absolute worst. I guess the only way to go is up from here right?.... I hope

Posted by Esteban

1:49 PM, Jul 12, 2008

BrianL wrote: '... because I felt six years of Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, and Tim Butler were more valuable to us than two years of Erik Bedard.'

So did I. But Butler's first name is Tony, I believe. My impression is that he projects to be something like John Halama. And he was the least promising of the prospects we gave up. LOL.

Posted by LUCKY

2:06 PM, Jul 12, 2008

"no expert here and I don't know if there is a way to quantify this, but it sure seems that Bedard gets squeezed by the umpires more frequently than anyone else. some guys are just hard luck guys. it may not be the only cause, but it certainly may be one reason why his innings count has been so low thus far."

I'm sure BrianL and the rest of the Bad Luck Beltre crowd can quantify it for you. Much like LD%, I'm sure they've got stats for Umpire Squeezage. US% ?


"And it is a bit of a stretch to accuse me of saying "EriK Bedard is performing exactly the way he did in Baltimore." I don't believe I said that. What I did say is that Erik Bedard is throwing the exact same number of pitches he threw in Baltimore,"
"I'd prefer it if you didn't put words in my mouth."

Geoff like most reasonable people, would assume that's what you meant. When you guys aren't running around screaming "Strawman!", "Strawman!", then you're discounting dissenting opinions because they didn't use your EXACT words. A cute little tactic to always ensure self-righteousness.

Posted by NB

2:12 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Hooray people that don't understand things so they make fun of them! My favorite annoying internet poster type!

Posted by headliner

2:15 PM, Jul 12, 2008

thanks scottm for the runs stat. i was surprised the m's were only a 1/2 run or so below ave./game. Watching them, you'd think they'd be double or triple that.

Posted by BrianL

2:19 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Esteban - For some reason I had Tim Lincecum on the mind when I wrote that. Yeah, Tony Butler is the player I was talking about. Although, I'm not nearly as upset over losing him as I am over the fact we traded Chris Tillman away.

Posted by ferrari

2:26 PM, Jul 12, 2008

LUCKY:

There's an old album by Less Than Jake that you should check out.

Making Fun of Things You Don't Understand

Record Label: Far Out Records

Posted by LUCKY

2:51 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Why do you assume I don't understand LD%? I know exactly what it is and is not. It's best usage is to determine absolutely that Beltre is unlucky. I'm sorry, I just don't buy it. If luck or was something that could be proven with statistics we'd all have the answer and every casino in the world would go broke. If you are referring to stawman, yes I know what a strawman is and is not. And it is not always used correctly when these guys throw it out there at any dissenting opinion that attempts to refute their argument because they didn't use their EXACT words. And you play right into that crap that you claim to be above, by assuming that I don't understand these things.

Posted by NB

2:56 PM, Jul 12, 2008

I don't claim anything. You obviously don't understand the correlation between LD% and BABIP. That's fine. I don't understand a lot of things. Like quantum physics. Or how a computer works. But I don't go find people that do understand those things and make fun of them and say I don't buy them.

You have a right to ignorance, but it remains ignorance nonetheless.

I'm not typically this snarky but I'm obviously feeling a bit snappy.

Enjoy.

Posted by Lola

2:58 PM, Jul 12, 2008

You look suspiciously like you are driving while filming....


Any comments on the Carlos Silva interview that has been playing in segments on the radio? He talks about how the clubhouse just sort of accepts the lack of excellence, and how there needs to be more fire and such. Seems to fall in with the whole "trouble in the clubhouse" rumors, as well as the above stuff about Bedard, possibly?

Posted by LUCKY

3:18 PM, Jul 12, 2008

I know the correlation between LD and BAPIP. I understand their argument. I am of the opinion that luck is something you can't quantify. Until they can come up with a better solution than a certain player is hitting "unlucky" this year, I will continue to put little value in that argument.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luck

Posted by NB

3:32 PM, Jul 12, 2008

That's fine. Like I said, you are entitled to your opinion.

Posted by Capo

3:43 PM, Jul 12, 2008

I find it ironic that there is always some irrelevant stat that can support a SABR argument......"Well, when its 68F and the wind is blowing to LF, and his hair is parted on the right.....".

I want to bring up something. Dave Cameron wrote a very interesting piece about Matt Kemp the other day.....it had some great stuff in there.....but also left out a few things he and you guys always use when sticking up for guys like Beltre....like Line Drive % and age..........I just find it ironic that you guys always have some stat to support your argument.....baseball, and pitching especially, can be influenced greatly by things like effort, repetition, and stuff like mechanics....which all play into stats........this is an instance when things other than some isolated number comes into play

Posted by Capo

3:49 PM, Jul 12, 2008

"Something is wrong with Bedard. His swinging strike rate is down and he's not getting his curveball over. That suggests something's wrong with his delivery to the plate. I have no idea what, but if he's been hiding a shoulder problem or his hip problem hasn't healed, then that would go a long way to explain his ineffectiveness."

no one is going to argue that his high impact delivery could be causing hip issues.....

As to the swinging strike ratio....could be as simple as a scouting report....if he isn't getting pitches over, players are going to make him establish it. Could be pitch sequence.......In my opinion, having watched all of his starts, he isn't getting ANYTHING over the plate....or more specifically, he isn't hitting his spots well at all.

Its not just the curve, even when he is throwing strikes, he is wild within the zone.


"I think you forgot to mention that the expectations for this guy, since we gave up 5 players for him, may have been a bit high. He's never thrown 200 innings."

I think most everyone expected too much....the fact of the matter is we gave up WAY TOO MUCH for a guy who is not, nor has he ever been, a number one....in Baltimore he was always their #2 or #3.....and he has very much lived up to the reputation he built in Baltimore.

Posted by NB

3:55 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Capo,

Ok let's just go off of what you see. Can you honestly say, having watched the majority of games this year, that Beltre hasn't hit an inordinate number of line drives that have resulted in outs?

If so, doesn't it seem like if he continues to hit the ball hard that it will start to find holes? Or start to drop? Or whatever familiar phrase you want to use?

Either way, the batting average should (and is so far in July) come up. Probably not .300 or even .290 but I could see Beltre finishing with a .280/.350/.490 line which after park adjustment and defense are factored in make him a very valuable player.

There. I think I did that without citing anyone's hair part or the temperature at game time.

Posted by ls

4:08 PM, Jul 12, 2008

i just would hate to see them trade bedard, get two to three mediocre prospects and end up trading adam jones and george sherril for half a season of professional baseball player and some gap fillers for our AAA roster. Is he as good as we traded for: no. Is he good: yes. No need to let a pitiful season turn into a complete yard sale that results in three to four more pitiful seasons cause then people stop watching, income stops coming in and we are the kansas city royals...maybe thats extreme, i dont know. I just feel like the mariners should try to hold on to the few talented people they have under contract who arent thirty five.

Posted by Capo

4:13 PM, Jul 12, 2008

NB, you are missing my point completely...it had nothing to do with Beltre in the sense you are taking it. I'm a Beltre fan, and I think he'll finish off somewhere in the .265-.270 range, which I'd be happy with.

My point is in regards to how the SABR guys cherry pick stats to support a particular argument......in my example, its Matt Kemp......Cameron wrote an interesting, and good piece about Kemp being overrated....and focused his argument about half on avg of ball in play, and half on strikeout rate........completely ignoring the line drive % he uses whenever it suites the argument........if you look at Kemp's line drive rate, you can argue his avg/BIP is not too far out of line....he also completely disregarded that Kemop was 24, and has plenty of time to improve.

Again, its just an example.....I just am really bothered by the arguments we see here on a daily basis that some stat is the only way to look at a players quality, or worth.......and that people cherry pick their stats to support their argument, instead of looking at all the information available and forming an educated opinion.

Again, i'm not saying any one way is the perfect way to gauge a players ability.....trends can definitely be found in certain stats...........but you have to look at several things to form a well rounded opinion.

Posted by NB

4:17 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Capo,

Fair enough I completely agree with the idea of taking all (worthwhile) information into account before forming an overall evaluation.

I'm just tired of seeing people pick on Beltre so I tend to be a little touchy regarding him.

Posted by Capo

4:18 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Ideally, I think this is what we need to do with Bedard.

Let him sit on the DL until he is 100% healthy, the season is lost, and its not going to really affect anything to have someone else throw those 5 innings once a week.

Do not trade him, unless we are absolutely overwhelmed this coming offseason. If nothing materializes, we have him next season, and we when he walks in FA, we get a #1 and a sandwich pick the following draft.

so it boils down to this....we are not in any way going to get even money on what we spent, at this point, we need to deal from the perspective we need to get something better back in a trade than we would if we let him leave in FA.

Posted by Capo

4:21 PM, Jul 12, 2008

NB,
If nothing else, Adrian seems to be one of the few people on this team playing with heart.......he routinely makes spectacular plays at 3B.

He is annother player, that unless the M's are overwhelmed in a deal, should not go anywhere.

Posted by downonstrikes

4:32 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Thanks for the video.

Posted by downonstrikes

5:17 PM, Jul 12, 2008

Agreed Capo,
watching Beltre at 3rd last night was a treat. He has a heck of a glove. Can't help but think his bat will return when the team culture changes.

Posted by Capo

7:14 PM, Jul 12, 2008

One last thing to take into consideration in regards to both Ichiro and Beltre is.....why give them anything good to hit considering the crap around them in the lineup?

Honestly, if you were an opposing pitcher, why would Ichiro, Ibanez, or Beltre get anything good to hit....why not make them take agressive swings out of the strikezone and make guys like Vidro, Cairo, and Tuglett beat you?

Rigglclaren calls it protecting Ibanez......I call it beating his own team by essentially taking the bat out of the hands of the few players who can affect a ball game with their bats.

Recent entries

Aug 19, 08 - 04:52 PM
Game thread, Mariners vs. White Sox, 8-19

Aug 19, 08 - 04:08 PM
Love this cartoon

Aug 19, 08 - 09:08 AM
Nah, on second thought

Aug 18, 08 - 08:56 PM
Same as it ever was

Aug 18, 08 - 04:45 PM
Game thread, Mariners vs. White Sox, 8-18

Advertising

Marketplace

How to check air bag recalls; automakers beat mpg goal againnew
(Thinkstock) How to check air-bag recalls If you want to know whether your vehicle's air bags are subject to a recall, the website safercar.gov has li...
Post a comment

Advertising

Advertising

Categories
Calendar

August

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
          1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31            
Browse the archives

August 2008

July 2008

June 2008

May 2008

April 2008

March 2008

Advertising

Buy a link here