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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 3:27 PM

Yuck, squared

Posted by Larry Stone

Well, that might have been the worst game I've ever seen (from the Mariners' standpoint, that is. I'm sure White Sox fans loved it).

I'd have to say that was rock bottom for Seattle -- for now. They were completely non-competitive. I've gotten a few e-mails complaining about the effort, but I don't see it as an effort problem. It was just a totally out-classed team. Dickey's knuckleball was getting ripped around, but I cut him some slack. As Riggleman said after the game, he's been jacked around so much between starting and relieving, and both, that maybe somewhere along the line it sapped his knuckleball.

But whatever the cause, when you fall behind 8-0 after two, it's going to be a long, ugly game, and it was. They are now 46-80, With 36 games to go, the M's must finish at least 17-19 or better to avoid losing 100 games for the first time since 1980. In other words, they have to have at least a .472 winning percentage the rest of the way. That doesn't seem too much to ask, right? Well, consider that their win percentage for the season is now down to .365. And consider that their win percentage since the All-Star break is .290 (9-22). It doesn't look too good.

It looks terrible, in fact. I'd suggest they just throw the kids out there and let them learn under fire. Today's lineup had Clement, Balentien, Reed and LaHair. Good. They're taking their lumps, but that's OK. As Riggleman said, "I've tried to impress on them, your character as a man is judged in bad times, not good times. We're going through some bad times. They're passing the character test. Now we have to get over the hump and start winning some games.''

On that note, I'm heading for the airport. Geoff will return to his rightful spot here tomorrow.

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Posted by hoke

3:50 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I agree with Larry that the M's should put the "kids" out there, but that is hardly a new thought. The boys at the USS Mariner made that pitch months ago while the M's were trotting out Vidro and Sexson game after game.

The M's are an embearassment not only because they are a terrible team, but because the front office has learned nothing, zero, nada, zip however you want to describe it, how to construct a major league roster, how to value "replacement" level players, or even how to put the best possible line up on the field.

I wonder if the M's could ever become lovable losers like the 62 Mets or the Cubs from so many years, but as someone answered my question that to be lovable losers you have to some passion, commitement, and desire to be better, and the Mariners front office fails in all respects. Loser yes, but lovable losers....I don't think so.

Posted by scottM

3:53 PM, Aug 20, 2008

"the M's must finish at least 17-19 or better to avoid losing 100 games for the first time since 1980."

Where's your optimism, Larry? You'll be eating that yuck squared crow when the M's take the ALWest by finishing out the season 36-0, and the LAAngels revert to the mean to go 5-33 the rest of the way.

M's in '08!!!!!


Posted by ethan

3:55 PM, Aug 20, 2008

i watched the 9th inning at the gym. it looked as if the M's just wanted to go take showers. quick outs. lazy swings. i dont think any drive, heart or determination has been instilled in the young kids.
is there some sort of unspoken, unwritten contract to not embarrass major league players? i would have made the entire team run sprints in the outfield after the game. .. Until someone was puking blood.

Posted by Jack

3:56 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Wow, I would really like to see Larry Stone running this blog next season. His posts have been incredibly refreshing.

Posted by scottM

3:57 PM, Aug 20, 2008

"the M's should put the "kids" out there, but that is hardly a new thought. The boys at the USS Mariner made that pitch months ago"

That's a hokey claim, hoke. The men here at Geoff Baker's blog made that claim two weeks and three days before the boys at USSM. The pitch was plagiarized from here.

Posted by Mr Yuck

4:04 PM, Aug 20, 2008

for all you whiners and haters...


this year is a wash. wait until the new GM is in place, wait until they make some moves. This team right now is going to suck quit crying like little bitches. it is a the team you all asked for you wanted the kids YOU GOT EM have some patience what a bunch of freakin whiners on here. It gets old reading you bitches cry each and every day after day after day like you could do any better

Posted by Toneitdownyuck

4:09 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Mr. Yuck must be doug and WSUx3, there is the same vulgar tone and profanity laced rhetoric. He really doesn't belong on this blog.

Posted by meagain

4:12 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Mr. Yuck, what, no puking blood? Where's your sense of competition?

Can't we at least have Ichiro and Raul run until they get hemorrhoids? That would show 'em.

Posted by mr mariner

4:13 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Riggles and his entire coaching staff can forget about working in Seattle next season. We need new leadership.

This team is terrible. Only the freefall Washington Nationals are worse right now.

Posted by shortbus

4:16 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Unfortunately in the pitching realm...we don't have any kids left. Feierabend was the last guy that has any shot of starting next year worth bringing up.

This is the legacy Bavasi left us, for all you guys who thought he was just fabulous. He made poor trade after crappy signing after poor trade and just depleted the organization financially and in talent. We're seriously likely to be crap for five years thanks to him.

Which means it's time to tank this season and get the number one pick. Number two or three won't be a franchise-saver in this draft, but number one might.

Posted by manny

4:37 PM, Aug 20, 2008

his showing with the glove should be enough for the coach to move him to left field or DH.
bad coaching move by the coach. how many time should we have to burn, coach?

Posted by meagain

4:38 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Where are the guys who thought he (Bavasi) was fabulous? Squeak up right now, all you guys.

OK, come on out, right now!

Someone is wrong on the internet.

Posted by Sounders

4:42 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Puke-O-Rama a little too vulgar for you, eh?

I understand. Yuck, Squared is pretty good.

Posted by Chuck A

4:42 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I thought he was fabulous

Posted by Howie L

4:43 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Me too

Posted by Mr. Y

4:46 PM, Aug 20, 2008

Do I have a voice in any of this? Yeah, I signed Kenji to a fabulous extension.

Posted by RagArm

4:51 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I'm old. I've seen and done a lot. So indulge me a minute.

Back in the dark ages I was a high school wrestler in a big city. My first match was against the former year's state champion. To make a long story short, I was pinned in 33 seconds and was embarrassed to death.

The following day (a Sunday) I ran around the city park three times (3 miles each), did push ups, sit ups and jumping jacks until I about died. The following week I was self-challenged to try harder and be more aggressive and learn from my mistake. I worked out with the team and went home and studied books and practiced moves while my physics book stayed closed. (bad move).

With enthusiasm, and as a sophomore, I beat everyone the coach put on the mat with me and I felt great. Top of the world.

The next week, I lost. Lost bad. Didn't get pinned though.

This regime of sacrifice and hard work continued during the off season. I wrestled anyone I could find. The girls ran away.

The following year I had a 24-1 record. I felt proud and looked back at all the hard work with satisfaction. I took physics for the second time, and passed.

The Mariners young players are in the same situation I was. They are down and out and hopefully embarrassed. I hope they have the intestinal fortitude to work harder and remain challenged, not giving up. It is up to them.

That character comes from within.

The coaches and manager should promote it and require such dedication from their money earning players.

I'm willing to give the "kids" the time to grow up and win, but they have to show heart and passion in the meantime, no matter what the vets model for them.

Amen, and thanks for listening.

Posted by shortbus

5:00 PM, Aug 20, 2008

All I know is there were plenty of people on the tubes that wanted Bavasi kept after last season. By then his inability to evaluate talent was evident, but we kept him. Worse still, the team put him in a position where he had to win now...meaning he would predictably overpay for FA's and rape the farm system for major leaguer players. Welcome Silva, Bedard and Wilkerson, goodby $57 million and some unknown quantity of talent between significantly greater than that of Silva, Bedard and Wilkerson, and VASTLY greater.

The abject horribleness of this season is a surprise, but the fact that the M's franchise is badly depleted in terms of talent and future payroll is not. Failing to win now makes a bad situation abyssmal.

Posted by Tom in PA

5:01 PM, Aug 20, 2008

I find it very interesting that in both Seattle papers that they are not posting the Seattle on the current West Divisional standings box that is located on each on-line sports page. I guess the papers figure that the fewer reminders of just how bad this team is currently playing the better.

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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