Few highs, many lows
The loss and lack of effort the M’s put into that game was the rancid cherry on top of yet another losing season as the Mariners managed to win just 71 games while dropping 91 during the 2013 campaign.
And that wasn’t even the lowest low point of the year.
No, that low point came 3 days earlier when the Mariner’s brass, Chuck Armstrong, Howard Lincoln, and Jack Zduriencik decided to drop M’s skipper Eric Wedge overboard.
Howard and his boys attached Wedge to a long piece of string, trolling him around like a freshly captured Columbia River salmon as he struggled behind the S.S. Mariners’ Battleship that had set a collision course toward the massive rocks sticking up in the giant sea of hopelessness.
Floundering prospects’ performances didn’t help the Mariners during the 2013 campaign either. Take your pick.
- Michael Saunders hit a whopping .236 on the season after what seemed like a fast start for him.
- Nick Franklin, a mid season call up at 2nd base, finished the year hitting .225 after he had folks talking Rookie of the Year at one point.
- Jason Bay, signed as a free agent in the offseason didn’t even make it the whole year. Instead he wound up being designated for assignment after hitting only .204.
- Michael Morse, who the M’s acquired in a what seemed at the time to be a savvy trade with Washington, just could not stay healthy and was eventually dealt to Baltimore.
- Jesus Montero, the M’s prized catching prospect that they acquired from the Yankees hit only .208 in 100 at bats before being sent down and eventually suspended for PEDs.
The are some note worthy numbers to point out despite all the doom and gloom that permeates from the Mariners right now.
Justin Smoak just may be finally figuring things out. He hit just .238 on the season but he did hit 20 HRs for the first time in his career and had 50 RBIs as well. Could it be that Smoak is finally finding his long promised power?
Dustin Ackley hit .253 on the season. I suppose that’s average at best and not even as good as he performed when he was first called up a couple of years ago. Take a look at Ackley’s numbers after the All-Star break though.
He hit .304 after mid July. That’s a pretty consistent run of success for Ackley. The most he’s shown in some time. Has Ackley finally rediscovered what he had as a rookie?
Veterans Raul Ibanez and Kendrys Morales both had solid years. Morales lead the team with a .277 batting average. Raul lead the team in HRs with 29. It remains to be seen if either of them return to the Emerald City in 2014 however.
There’s good news in regards to starting pitching as well. We all know what Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma did but call up starters James Paxton and Taijuan Walker have been solid for the M’s and even dominant at times.
In fact, I think a rotation of Hernandez, Iwakuma, Paxton, Walker and a veteran free agent to be determined has a chance at being one of the best starting 5 in baseball come 2014. (The news about Hultzen is too bad. He had shoulder surgery performed by Dr. James Andrews in Florida on Tuesday, and probably won’t pitch for 14 months or so.)
Who will the new skipper be? Heck, who might a new owner be?
It’s going to be a tumultuous off season for the M’s to say the least.
Let’s hope they have finally hit rock bottom and can now finally begin to rebound.