As average as it gets
The Seattle Mariners wrapped up a 10 game stretch against the Padres, Twins and White Sox in the most Mariner way possible: a 5-5 record. After their giant slide before this, they needed much more than a .500 effort. After falling from 2nd place to a distant 4th, the Mariners are looking to right the ship.
Is their pitching to blame for the recent mediocrity? Perhaps. The run support hasn’t been all that great, either.
People are calling for the heads of Eric Wedge and Jack Z. Is it too soon? That’s arguable. One thing is for sure…Wedge is doing everything he can with what he’s been given.
As for pitching, there has been lots of movement. While Wedge is trying his hardest not to shove Danny Hultzen into the majors, he is quickly running out of options. While most starters are going deep into games despite their lack of run support, the times when the bullpen have been called upon have been some of the scariest times as of late.
With the bullpen getting more of the decisions recently, the team needs to be sure they can count on the bullpen. And that has NOT been the case recently. Let’s take a look.
Felix Hernandez was back to his old form this go around. He went deep into games and earned wins in both of his appearances. Let’s hope his struggles are over this season and that he stays the dominant Felix we all know and love.
Stats: 2 appearances, 15.1 innings pitched, 9 hits, 5 runs, 4 walks, 14 strike outs, 1 home run, 2-0 record
Hisashi Iwakuma put together one of his best performances of the season last week, which is hard to believe after some of the gems he’s already thrown. Going back to run support, he earned himself a no decision in that masterful performance.
Stats: 2 appearances, 15.2 innings pitched, 10 hits, 2 walks, 10 strike outs, 1-0 record
Joe Saunders is holding onto his job with the thinnest of grasps. While his veteran presence has been a good thing for the clubhouse, a few of his performances have been the opposite. This week, though, Saunders held it together despite the lack of runs in his favor. Yet another masterful performance was put into the hands of the bullpen.
Stats: 2 appearances, 13.1 innings pitched, 9 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 8 strike outs, 1 home run, 1-0 record
Like Saunders, Aaron Harang is holding onto his job with the last grasps of pure desperation. But like the rest of the staff, he threw an absolute gem, going for a complete game shut out. Let’s hope he can hold up long enough for the Mariners to call up for acquire some talent to replace him.
Stats: 2 appearances, 15 innings pitched, 8 hits, 2 runs, 1 earned run, 4 walks, 12 strike outs, 1-0 record
Poor Brandon Maurer. He stunned everyone by making the jump from AA to the majors, but has looked very much like a rookie in the vast majority of his outings. It got ugly quick and the team finally decided to let him progress in an atmosphere more conducive to his development. Not before letting him get one last start in, though.
Stats: 1 appearance, 5.2 innings pitched, 9 hits, 6 runs, 5 earned runs, 1 walk, 2 strike outs, 2 home runs, 0-1 record
Local legend Jeremy Bonderman finally got to live out his childhood dream of pitching for the Mariners. It didn’t develop how he’d like, but at the quarter point of the season, he finally got his opportunity. While it didn’t go quite as planned or hoped, Bonderman can reach deep down and put together an inspired performance or 2 before the Mariners make a final decision on him.
Stats: 1 appearance, 4.2 innings pitched, 9 hits, 7 runs, 1 walk, 1 strike out, 3 home runs, 0-1 record
While Carter Capps is getting really short stints in games, he is making the best of them. He did not allow a run over these 10 games and did not register a decision, which for the bullpen is a really good thing given recent trends.
Stats: 3 appearances, 2.1 innings pitched, 5 hits, 2 walks, 3 strike outs
Oliver Perez had a week much like Capps. He didn’t get long outings, but he did his job effectively when called upon. The steady vet has proven that he has plenty of gas left in the tank and can still hang with the kids.
Stats: 4 appearances, 2 innings pitched, 3 hits, 1 walk, 2 strike outs
The Mariners should have left Hector Noesi in Tacoma. While I hate saying that about young talent, he didn’t fare well his first outings this year. Then he went to Tacoma and worked on his mechanics until he was called back up. Then history repeated itself.
Stats: 2 apperances, 5.1 innings pitched, 14 hits, 6 runs, 3 walks, 6 stirke outs, 1 home run, 0-1 record
This one hurts me the most. The most steady pitcher on the entire team, Tom Wilhelmsen, has become quite possibly the most shaky. After going perfect in save opportunities, The Bartender has faltered, costing the team multiple losses already. Here’s to hoping he gets it together quick or else we may see a changing of the guard.
Stats: 5 appearances, 4.1 innings pitched, 3 hits, 5 runs, 7 walks, 2 strike outs, 0-2 record, 2 blown saves, 2 saves