My oh my…
Another season of Seattle baseball is over before the first week of August has come to a close. If any of you out there in Marinersville predicted this coming from a mile away, raise your hand (pause).
That’s a ton of hands that went up. Okay so this season wasn’t exactly what we thought it would be, and in all fairness, there is still 48 games remaining on the schedule. So I shouldn’t be so judgmental.
Anything can still happen, there is still a lot of baseball left to plaaa…er.. Okay. Who am I kidding? There is only 48 games left on the schedule.
It’s over, finished, fini, kaput, D.O.N.E., done!
What a terrible feeling for hardcore Mariners fans to admit this so early in august, but unfortunately this has become an annual rite of passage for most baseball fans in this region. Once August hits, it’s all about the Seahawks, Huskies, Cougs, and for some folks, the Sounders.
How did this once promising season end up on the trash heap so quickly?
Some can point to this last off-season when Jack Zduriencik and company elected to infuse some power into the lineup by collecting a mass of DH/1B types that were injury prone, and had a penchant to strikeout at an enormously high rate.
This kind of thinking went away from conventional Mariners wisdom (Actually it didn’t. Going cheap is an annual right of passage for Chuck Armstrong). They could’ve played it smart and signed Michael Bourn to a 4 year, 48 million dollar (12m per) to fill the huge void defensively in CF, and replace Ichiro at the top of the order.
But they didn’t (shocker).
Zduriencik and company were convinced that Franklin Gutierrez would stay healthy enough not to invest in a player that was a much better fit for the team.
As a result, Guti lasted all of the 11 games into the season before being shelved. Had Mariners brass had the foresight in spring training to see that Guti couldn’t play in multiple games because of injury, they could have sent him to the DL earlier.
Giving the Mariners some actual stability in the outfield.
Speaking of stability, wouldn’t it have been nice to have a complete starting rotation all season?
Remember those days when the pitching staff carried crappy offenses from start to finish? For the first time in a very long time, the front office put Eric Wedge under the eight ball with a rotation that lacked talent.
It speaks volumes to the lack of attention that Jack Zduriencik actually gave his pitching staff in the off-season.
It wasn’t until Aaron Harang replaced Blake Beavan after a few weeks, that they hit the reset button on their rotation. Causing the Mariners to lose any stability they could have used to avoid the start they got off to.
When was the last time anyone can point to when a teams playoff aspirations did that to themselves so early in the season?
It wasn’t until April 25th when the Mariners finally looked like a baseball team.
They reeled off a 12-6 stretch to get to a 20-26 mark before succumbing to a 8-game losing streak.
Lake Of Foresight
In retrospect, the 2013 season didn’t fail because of a fundamental lack of talent. Any talent evaluator could have looked at the roster and said this team was capable of .500 on talent alone. It failed because of the lack of foresight from the front office and the coaching staff.
Poor personnel decisions in the off-season, and the mishandling of injuries during the season put the kibosh on what should have been a .500 jumping off point to another great stretch in franchise history.
Unfortunately for Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong, it’s back to the drawing board.
Tune in tomorrow at 9 a.m. PST as Dre from the 206 and I will breakdown how this once promising season went so wrong for the 2013 Seattle Mariners.
We’ll also preview the 2013 Pac-12 season from UW/WSU prospective. It’s all at 9 a.m. on the First Pitch, only on Fox Sports 1380.