M’s Finally Snap Skid
The Headline: the Seattle Mariners 1-hit the Minnesota Twins, and break their 7-game losing streak.
Seattle Mariners 7, Minnesota Twins 0
When: 10:10 ET, Friday, May 4, 2012
Where: Safeco Field, Seattle
Umpires: Home — Laz Diaz, 1B — Mike Everitt, 2B — Paul Schrieber, 3B — Tim Welke
1. The Win
This was a solid win for the Mariners. Anytime you crush a team 7-0, and give up 1 hit as a team, it’s impossible to not feel good about it.
Even better was that the Mariners needed this win. They were riding a 7-game losing streak which saw them completely demoralized by Tampa Bay and Toronto. With Detroit, New York and Boston looming on the horizon it’s nice to see Seattle build some steam.
2. Patience at the Plate
Seattle showed amazing poise at the plate tonight. They walked 8 times as a team, and managed to get 6 against Twins starter Jason Marquis — subsequently knocking him out of the game by the sixth inning.
With 7 runs scored on 7 hits, the walks played a pivotal role in Seattle’s offensive assault.
3. Good Baseball
This was a night of just good baseball.
The pitching was spot on, with Felix going 8 strong innings and the team 1 hitting the Twins as a whole. The offense stuck to fundamentals and put up 7 runs.
They walked a total of 8 times, and had two vital sack hits.
1. 8-innings of Felix
When a win is this good, you have to get stingy about things to dislike.
And on that note, I have to point out Felix Hernandez only going 8-innings. He was absolutely masterful, not allowing a single man to get on base after the 4th.
But man, it would’ve been so much sweeter if he had pitched a complete game 1-hitter.
2. The Lineup
Once again, have to get a little stingy here.
I’ve been a huge proponent of lineup change, and with Chone Figgins resting tonight Dustin Ackley took over at the leadoff spot. Ackley had a fantastic night, going 1-2 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored.
My only issue is that I don’t think Ackley is the future leadoff man of the Mariners. He’s not particularly fast, but his hitting tools make him an ideal middle of the order hitter.
With Ichiro so hot I think it would be better — if not more traditional — to have him hitting one and Ackley hitting third.
3. Bottom Struggles
The Mariners offense has been incredibly streaky. At times only the top is hitting, at times only the middle is hitting, at times everybody is hitting.
But, the most common streak is that the bottom of the order is struggling. Mike Carp is back, which is very exciting, but he’s been lackluster since his return.
Tonight he hit eighth, while the slumping Justin Smoak hit seventh. The two of them combined for 0 hits and 3 men left on base tonight.
The Mariners are averaging six runs per game in their 12 wins this season. Hernandez has allowed just two runs over his last 31 innings pitched. Marquis lost for the first time in five career starts against Seattle.
The Twins own the worst record in the major leagues (7-19) and are 15-48 over their last 63 games dating back to last season.