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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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August 20, 2008 10:35 AM

Game thread, 8-20, Mariners vs. White Sox

Posted by Larry Stone

UPDATE 11:49: Well, that was something to see: Ken Griffey Jr.'s first White Sox home run, which was his first American League home run since 1999 with the Mariners. It was the 609th homer of his career, tying him with former White Sox and Cubs outfielder Sammy Sosa for fifth on the all-time list.

UPDATE 11:45: Just got an update on Jim Thome. He was scratched because of slight soreness in his right leg. The White Sox offense has really struggled without him.

UPDATE, 11:30: To answer my own question (see below): Doesn't look like it.

So, will I get to see a Mariners' victory on this road trip? Remember, Geoff was in Anaheim, so he got to cover the lone win. I'm 0-for-Minnesota and Chicago. Trust me, the trudge into that visiting clubhouse after each defeat is not pleasant. One time in the early 1990s, I was covering a bad Giants' team, and after a loss, one of the writers was chuckling about something as he walked into the clubhouse to do his interviews.One of the Giants' players -- I believe it was Will Clark -- started screaming at him, "What are you laughing about?" It got pretty ugly. Ah, the memories.

Anyway, Balentien is back in left field after a spell in center. I asked Riggleman if he had a feel for what Balentien's best outfield position is. Here's his answer:

"He's OK in center. The thing about it is, he's got such a good arm that we probably would like for him to settle in in left or right. If our necessity is that he plays center, that's what we'll do. But it's hard to throw guys out from center. Basically, you throw peopl;e out from left and right. We probably would like to have him play one of those two eventually.''

Could Ichiro wind up back in center? "The makeup of the ballclub is going to determine that. I'm pretty sure Ichiro prefers to play right. I know for the team he would go to center."

More tidbits: Felix is fine after getting hit on his left ankle by a line drive on Tuesday. Carlos Silva is penciled in to return to the rotation on Aug. 31 against Cleveland. And don't pencil in Erik Bedard for anything. Apparently, his last throwing session didn't go so well.

"What I'm hearing is he's not as encouraged by his previous outing as he was with his others,'' Riggleman said.

The immediate upshot: Bedard's Saturday bullpen session will almost certainly be delayed. The long-term upshot: His chances of pitching again this season are up in the air.

"I guess I'd look at it as kind of gravy if he does,'' Riggleman said. "I'd love for him to pitch for us. I'd love to have him feel good about how he pitched going into the offseason, with a plan for him, but I can't make it happen."

I'd say the chances of trading Bedard in the offseason are extremely slim if he can't get back on the mound this year (or even if he does). So look for the big lug to be back in the Mariners' rotation next year -- provided his left shoulder allows it.



Ichiro RF
Jeremy Reed CF
Raul Ibanez DH
Adrian Beltre 3B
Jose Lopez 2B
Jeff Clement C
Wladimir Balentien LF
Bryan LaHair 1B
Yuniesky Betancourt SS

R.A. Dickey P

White Sox

Orlando Cabrera SS
A.J. Pierzynski C
Carlos Quentin LF
Ken Griffey Jr. DH
Paul Konerko 1B
Nick Swisher RF
Alexei Ramirez 2B
DeWayne Wise CF
Juan Uribe 3B

Gavin Floyd P

(The White Sox made a late lineup change, scratching Jim Thome, moving Griffey from RF to DH, Swisher from CF to RF, and DeWayne Wise to center field. Not sure yet what's wrong withThome. Interesting that Griffey was originally playing right and not center).

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Posted by Pirata Morado

11:06 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Good lineup! If only Riggs weren't so stubborn and moved Mr. Unlucky out of the cleanup spot....

Posted by joebbaseball

11:20 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Its amazed that at this point in the year the M's finally have a lineup that we've all asked for for over two months! I guess when your head are that far up, it takes awile to get it out.

Posted by Pirata Morado

11:22 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Thank you cleanup guy! You've done a nice job of cleaning up the bases, that's just not the same idea of cleaning up the bases.

Posted by neil

11:27 AM, Aug 20, 2008

No you won't (get to see a W). Here we go again - single, single, GIDP, SO....single, double, PB, run, single, run.......They need to change their name to the "UNBEARABLES"

Posted by OlyHomer

11:29 AM, Aug 20, 2008

This is one game people won't mind being at work and missing. Bottom of first, no outs, bases loaded and already two runs in. Gotta love it. Too bad no lineup could probably score enough runs with our pitching.

Go Mariners!

Posted by Topher Tucks It

11:34 AM, Aug 20, 2008

These guys are garbage. I can see that I haven't missed anything by missing the last couple months or so of baseball Boo Mariners you suck

Posted by chrisuk

11:35 AM, Aug 20, 2008

I am watching on WGN Chicago

Hawk harrelson just said "Mercy" when the home run was hit.

I say MERCY - call it off -if this was a boxing match the ref would have stopped it.

Posted by Topher Tucks It

11:38 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Jeff "strike three looking" Clement

Posted by Jonathan

11:38 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Dickeys era as a starter is like 7, in the bullpen it's under 2. I think we know where he belongs.

Every start he's either really good or really off. That inconsistency is intolerable.

Posted by Topher Tucks It

11:39 AM, Aug 20, 2008

I guess it was swinging this time Oh Boy

Posted by Topher Tucks It

11:39 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Another K victim

Posted by marlene

11:40 AM, Aug 20, 2008

M's behind already 6-0. Same old story

Posted by DFA

11:48 AM, Aug 20, 2008

I don't think the chuckleball is working. It's time for R.A. Dickey to fulfill his destiny as a long-haul trucker.

Posted by Alex

11:51 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Griffey with the homer. Last is First.

Posted by Esteban

11:51 AM, Aug 20, 2008

‘And don't pencil in Erik Bedard for anything. Apparently, his last throwing session didn't go so well.
"What I'm hearing is he's not as encouraged by his previous outing as he was with his others,'' Riggleman said.
The immediate upshot: Bedard's Saturday bullpen session will almost certainly be delayed. The long-term upshot: His chances of pitching again this season are up in the air.’

A lot of people were rightly critical of the Bedard – ‘ton of talent, both present and future’ trade, but I’ve got to think pretty much everyone is surprised at just how one-sided it has turned out to be, even in the short-term. Even if say Butler never develops into anything and Tillman suffers a career-ending injury, I really can’t think of a more one-sided trade in the recent past. File this one under ‘franchise-crippling’.

Go Rays! (And of course that ‘veteran grit’ provided by Floyd. We all know that’s REALLY why they’re 4-1/2 up in the AL East.)

Posted by Bill

11:52 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Griffey hit a home run. Sign him up for the M's and pay him $10M!

Posted by Hollywood Die Hard

11:55 AM, Aug 20, 2008

The Mariners secret agenda: get Griffey into the post season. Of course, getting spanked in Minnesota was not part of their well thought out plan, but at least they are trying to make up for it in Chicago.

Go back to the bullpen, Dickey. Oh wait, you aren't running this team? Isn't someone supposed to be running this team? If it was supposed to be me, I totally didn't get the memo.

Posted by Balentienforcer

11:56 AM, Aug 20, 2008

At least the M's are trying their best to take the wildcard away from the Eastern division!


Posted by Sounders

11:57 AM, Aug 20, 2008

Beltre way to go baby. Steeeerike three!!!! Way to get unlucky when it matters baby! Just watch. He'll get some now that we're down 8-0. Just watch.

Posted by Esteban

12:08 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Oh, and Chris Tillman topped Baseball America’s Prospect Hot Sheet last week. Looks like we gave away a future ace (and a future gold glove CF, current all-star, solid reliever prospect and nice MOR prospect) for a guy who plays a nice game of ping-pong.

From the Hot Sheet:
“If the Orioles end their 10-year spiral of consecutive losing seasons (not counting this year), the Erik Bedard trade haul will go a long way toward reviving the franchise. Adam Jones and George Sherrill have helped this year's O's be better than expected, and relief righty Kam Mickolio (already in Triple-A) has shown considerable promise. But Tillman may prove to be the biggest piece.

He struck out seven in six shutout innings against Trenton in his latest start, has 28 K's (and just three walks) in 18 August innings, and is climbing the leaderboards for the entire minors despite his age and inexperience. His 9.94 strikeouts per nine innings ranks eighth among full-season pitchers; his 3.49 ERA ranks third in the Eastern League, and his 131 K's ranks third. His improved walk numbers might be the most important piece, as with 57 he's tied for third in the EL but showing clear progress. ”

The ‘Erik Bedard trade haul’. (sigh)

Posted by Draigh

12:17 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I think my long dead, 4"8" grandmother (1990) could play a better "Major League" game right now than this bunch of losers!

Posted by Draigh

12:22 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Certainly more "life" in her pitches right now than R.A. currently has.

Posted by Beezlebub

12:23 PM, Aug 20, 2008

It seems we are well off to our effort to win the draft sweepstakes. Go Nats win 'em all!

Posted by The Ancient Mariner

12:28 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Beltre is a Jonah = unlucky sinks ships.

Posted by Alex

12:30 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I love Raul Ibanez

Posted by ethan

12:34 PM, Aug 20, 2008

could Raul win player of the month with the Mariners winning a total of 3 games?

Posted by headliner

12:44 PM, Aug 20, 2008

This team needs a new manager and all new coaches.

Posted by cloud

12:44 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Just provide me with the Mercy Rule and let this game be over with! It's getting so ugly for this ballclub.

Posted by ethan

12:45 PM, Aug 20, 2008


Posted by Beezlebub

12:46 PM, Aug 20, 2008

The winds of change should be a blowin', nothing like a good butt kicking the bring on the cry for another sacrifice, eh Chuckie. Now maybe its your time to give it up and take Howie with you.

And it would not hurt to dump the sunk costs of our stellar DH/C while you are at it.

Posted by ethan

12:52 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Lincoln and Armstrong leaving would be like Putin and Medvedev leaving Georgia.

Posted by HRman

12:52 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Why was yuni taken out in the third

Posted by The Mariners FO.

12:56 PM, Aug 20, 2008

If all the other teams have 3 or 4 Cy Young clones who constantly mow our hitters down, and we don’t have any of these clones, well, I’m thinking that there is a conspiracy going on here. Well Major League Baseball, what gives?

Posted by Bums

12:59 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I have this feeling that Bedard just does not want to be out there anyway. What does he care? He is making his guaranteed millions just like many others on this team and just don't seem to care.

Posted by Draigh

1:02 PM, Aug 20, 2008

If I was at the game today and a White Sox fan, I'd want my money back.
The Mariner F.O. should just forfeit the remaining games this year and send the players home with their paychecks. It would give the "fans" an extra month to forget about this stinkeroo of a season.

Posted by Hollywood Die Hard

1:03 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I am so glad I am not playing that drinking game where you have to chug a beer for every run the other team scores.

Boy, that would have been a colossal bummer.

Posted by The Mariners FO.

1:06 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Not to worry Oakland is losing so we won’t lose any ground to them.

Posted by Ry

1:10 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Will this finally shut people up about RA Dickey and the '09 rotation? The man is mop-up material at best.

Posted by The Mariners FO.

1:16 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Idiots are Idiots and all it takes is for a player to have one good game and then they are grasping at straws, ready to anoint that player as the next superstar. Why bother to check him out fully, thus, R. A. Dickey

Posted by beezlebubz

1:19 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Dearest Beezlebub, Your wish is my command... forthwith I will never use thy moniker again, small case or otherwise.

Posted by Scanman

1:20 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Remember this game it might be important. What happens if by pulling Ichiro out of a meaningless game he misses his 200 hits by 1. I’ll bet this blog will go nuts on that one.

Posted by pbk13

1:21 PM, Aug 20, 2008

The people on this blog supported the "franchise crippling" Bedard trade should be fired, just like Bavasi and McLaren (remember him?) were. If it took the Red Sox 100 years to overcome the Babe Ruth deal, it should take the Mariners at least that long to recover from this disaster.

This is getting worse by the day. I like the idea of firing fans.

LP: You've been let go.
Fan: Wha-what?
LP: Report to Tacoma tomorrow. We've already called up your replacement, he's got your seats.
Fan: You can't do that.
LP: We just did. Now get out of here.
Fan: Why? What I do?
LP: We traded for Bedard because you and thousands like you wanted us to. Fans need to take responsibility for their actions. Bavasi paid the price, now you.
Fan: That idiot at detect o vision said we needed to gamble.
LP: Gambling is only for those who are bad at math. If you don't get out of here you're gonna be suspended. Some jail time may be involved.

Posted by meagain

1:28 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Prescience must be great. It's certainly heady, judging by that 1:21 post.

Posted by DC

1:30 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Can't believe I'm still watching this game. Or reading this thread. These last two series have really been unbearable, and I can't even yell about Vidro or Sexson anymore...

The only condolences I can accept are that the M's have performed terribly in mid-August for about 10 straight years and this year is obviously no different.

Posted by meagain

1:37 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Larry, was Betancourt supposed to take a strike in that second at bat? Is that what sent him to the bench?

Posted by last rites

1:40 PM, Aug 20, 2008

nobody in sports wants to be associated with the term "quit" but this team has basically mailed it in over the last 10 games. Something has to give.

Posted by Beelzebub

1:42 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Maybe the storyline for this one should be "Ouch." What a pasting in Chitown! We just can't afford to be second worst, win Washington win! Worst is best, last is first.

Posted by RagArm

1:43 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Went grocery shopping and walked the dog in the park. Didn't realize this was a day game so I was whistling and humming as I went about things.

Then I turned on the radio and caught Rickles saying the Mariners had lost 15 to something.

My word! Is this going to get any less funny? This made my day because I've given up on this team and their do nothing way of going about things.

Hardy, har, har, har.

A Pacific Northwest joke!

Posted by Beelzebub

1:43 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Thank you kind friend.

Posted by RagArm

1:44 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Holy smoke, Rick Rizz just said the Sox won 5-3. Now I have to go to the M's website and check the score out. 5-3 or 15-3 Rick?

We need to clean house in and out of this organization.

Posted by Mt Rainier

1:51 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I don't know what all the fuss is about.

I mean this is basically a AAA team. We all knew this would happen

We all asked to see the kids

Here there are live with it.

It will get worse before it gets better

why were there no trades?

because Lee P is just a puppet keeping the GM seat warm until a real one is hired

Posted by The Mariners FO.

1:51 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Do you suppose the Mariners had anything to do with the purchase of those automatic toilets that the city paid way too much for and then unloaded for pennies on the dollar? I think I’m starting to see a pattern. Is all of Seattle nuts or just the FO and the CC?

Posted by The Mariners FO.

1:57 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Old mother Riggelman went to the farm to get her team a player. When she got there the farm was bare because Billy forgot to restock it.

Posted by Sounders

1:58 PM, Aug 20, 2008


Good one.

Posted by The Ancient Mariner

1:59 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Maybe Dickeys arm is not made of rubber and he can't be expected to pitch on two days rest.

Do these managers and coaches really know anything about baseball. Lets clean house starting with the FO -- byebye Chuck and Howie, so long, its been nice to know ya.

Posted by RagArm

2:00 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Think anybody is embarrassed in that clubhouse right now? Think Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Armstrong are happy at their efforts to give the fans a good product? Think Wiggleworm and Lee Pee are feeling secure in their positions? Think Junior wants to sign up with the M's again? Do you think Raul will want to stay with this sinking ship?

Dismay. Getting more dismal.

Spin doctors on the radio and TV are eating their words.

Journalists should be ashamed for not getting aggressive and forcing tough answers.

Fans are guilty of supporting a losing awful franchise by attending games and taking home their bobbleheads!

Posted by Scanman

2:04 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I’m sorry but bobbleheads are the most worthless things on the planet with the exception of the Front Office.

Posted by Sounders

2:05 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I don't even watch the games anymore. I was gonna go to some this summer but it's just too damned ugly. I do read the blog, way more interesting.

We will know soon. If Howie and Chuckie leave and a competent GM comes in I will start watching again.

If they stay and we get Steve Phillips or Krivsky or some other member of the ole boys club then I'm gonna write them off. If nothing changes after this year we can be fairly sure nothing will until Howie and Chuckie drop dead. I'm just not gonna wait around watching incompetence until that happens.

Posted by mikey

2:06 PM, Aug 20, 2008

this is one of the more pathetic teams i've ever seen

Posted by Top pick in 09 draft

2:18 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Seems pretty obvious that the team has just tanked it and have quit under Riggleman - trading deadline fiasco orchestrated by our incompetent interim GM Lee P is a large part of what has resulted. Randy J was correct back in 1998 when he said Lee P should be mopping a floor somewhere rather than being in a MLB FO.

May as well play the Sept. callups daily rather than give more playing time to a bunch of veterans who have packed it in. This team has imploded! It's too bad that the only other MLB team in worse shape are the Nationals who have now lost 11 in a row with no end in sight.

Posted by downonstrikes

2:46 PM, Aug 20, 2008

But we LOVE our bobbleheads Scanman

Posted by Sounders

2:51 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Beltre had a shot in the first inning. If we'd gotten a lead it might have been different. But what happened? He struck out swinging to end the inning.He folded like a wet paper bag like he always does when it matters.

Posted by HMJ

2:52 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Ichiro tries stealing a base when trailing 10-1 tells you all you need to know about the guy. The White Sox must have got a big laugh out of that. It's all about me, me, me.
Also, Dave Niehaus is a well deserving hall of fame broadcaster and should be on the broadcasting team as long as he wants, BUT, the quality of his work is very poor. Multilple errors , poor eyesight and and an out of breath Dave Niehaus is not what we grew up with. May I suggest lowering his workload so we may enjoy the old Dave Niehaus. I think that would help.

Posted by Sounders

2:57 PM, Aug 20, 2008

hey Stone,

Yesterday was Yuck. What's it gonna be today? How bout this: Puke-O-Rama

Posted by Chuck

2:57 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Every day this season I have been thankful that I gave up my season tickets in protest of front office moves.

Posted by RagArm

2:58 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Man, what I wouldn't do for a Putz bobblehead and some rally fries right now.

Posted by Sounders

3:01 PM, Aug 20, 2008


That is interesting. Seems unlikely that Riggleman would order a steal down 10-1. If he took off on his own in that situation my opinion of him has just gone down a few notches

Posted by John

3:11 PM, Aug 20, 2008

One step closer to that No. 1 pick. Losing right now is the best thing that can happen to this organization. The San Diego State kid is a stud and the best thing that could happen next June.
I say bring Sexson and Vidro back, start Johjima every day and plummet like a meteor.
Not that we'll have very far to fall.

Posted by downonstrikes

3:11 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Did you hear Wiggleworm's post-game interview? The guy is so full of excuses. He is so concerned about the players and doesn't want them to think about the s...y job they are doing during the games when they leave the stadiums.

Every one of those men with the exception of Raul should be thinking deeply about their role in this disaster.

Wiggleworm doesn't want their wives and kids to know they are doing a terrible job at work. If I was married to one of these losers I'd want to know, especially now that A-Rod is available.

Excuse after excuse. He feels sorry for us fans though. That makes me feel better.

Posted by DC

3:12 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Give Ichiro a break. Stealing 2nd is about the only way to avoid being the first out in a double-play on the 2008 M's.

Posted by Sounders

3:14 PM, Aug 20, 2008


Dateline Seattle:

The Seattle Mariners have relocated. After numerous fan protests, CEO Howard Lincoln has decided to move the team to Issiquah. They will now be known as The Issiquah Incompetents.

Lincoln was quoted as saying, "Now we won't have to drive over that bridge ever day to stink."

Posted by meagain

3:15 PM, Aug 20, 2008

So, let's see. We are all upset because the players, some of them at least, seem to have given up. And we are also upset because one player, who incidently went 6 for 8 in these last two fiascos, didn't give up even when the team was down 10-1. (They weren't about to throw him out, so don't give me that.)

If you think he's padding his stats, would bad stats make you happier?

Posted by AKMarinersFan

3:18 PM, Aug 20, 2008

The Mariners need to find a way to suck more. We are still behind the Nationals in the race for Strasburg.

Cairo needs to start everyday. Keep Kenji in the game. Ibanez needs to play LF everyday (no more of those assists from LF), Batista needs to start again, ....hmmm...what else can we do?

Posted by Sounders

3:20 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Good point DC. My bad, I wasn't even watching the game, just shooting my mouth off a little more than usual today.

Posted by Marty

3:41 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Some one was talking about getting the #1 pick in next years draft. What makes anyone think we could sign a #1, didn't happen this year.

Posted by AKMarinersFan

3:50 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I would offer Strasbury whatever the combined amount that Silva, Batista, and Washburn are being paid.

I think he would accept $20 million a year wouldn't he?

Posted by Top pick in 09 draft

3:53 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Marty: Strasburg will be represented by Scott Boras so you know what you will be up against before drafting the guy. Boras will demand a record signing bonus along with a MLB contract with the 6 years until FA kicking in immediately. I think if the M's get lucky enough to "win" the #1 pick, they may as well budget a good chunk of the salary savings derived from the Sexson, Vidro, & Ibanez contracts ($30m) for signing Strasburg.

No point in throwing huge amounts of money at mediocre FA pitchers again (see the $12million/year given to Buffet Silva).

Posted by HMJ

4:01 PM, Aug 20, 2008


It's all about having a little class. You don't try to steal at 10-1 under any circumstance, whether your are winning or losing. I'm sure the Mariners cringed too. But, sadly, there is one set of rules for Ichiro and a completely different set of rules for everybody else. And yes, he is a stats padder.

Posted by mr mariner

4:11 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Did anyone realistically expect Boo Boo Bedard to get himself back into the pitching rotation this year? Afterall, he has a $9M contract for this season and next. Next year, he likely will try to pitch in order to get a new contract. This year, forget it....he will be playing ping pong in the clubhouse. What a wuss.

Another Conehead Bavasi disaster.

Posted by wabubba

4:34 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Just watched a rerun of South Park where two Little League teams were trying to purposely lose...I wonder if the creators got the idea from the Mariners and Nationals 2008 anti-pennant race to draft Brian Strasburg?

Recent entries

Aug 20, 08 - 03:27 PM
Yuck, squared

Aug 20, 08 - 10:35 AM
Game thread, 8-20, Mariners vs. White Sox

Aug 20, 08 - 08:45 AM
How winning teams do it

Aug 19, 08 - 08:44 PM

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







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