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Daily coverage of the Mariners during the season and all year long.

May 17, 2007 at 8:15 PM

Doing the Broussard shuffle

Looks like the Mariners won’t be able to recover from those Ben Broussard plays in left field tonight. Their final realistic chance ended, interestingly enough, with Raul Ibanez — whose sore back pushed Broussard into left in the first place — trying to get around on Scot Shields offerings as a pinch-hitter. Shields looked mighty pumped when he blew that 2-2 fastball by Ibanez with two on and two out in the eighth.
Jose Guillen just helped give the Angels a seventh run in the top of the ninth by overrunning a single to right by Erick Aybar, allowing him to take second on the error. Aybar was bunted to third and then scored on a passed ball by Kenji Johjima. So, we’ll call that five runs given away tonight. You won’t beat this Angels squad and its pitchers by doing that.
On the Ichiro stolen base attempt — ending his AL record streak at 45 — I wonder whether the Mariners had a hit-and-run on and somebody missed the sign. Jose Vidro has proved mighty adept at hitting the ball to the right side and the hit-and-run would be something to get a rally going down three runs in a situation like that with a good baserunner and a contact hitter. Ichiro was also thrown out by such a wide margin that it looked like a botched hit-and-run. But Vidro never swung and isn’t the type to blow signs too often. I seriously question the need for a steal in that situation. We’ll wait for the explanation. A half-inning left and the M’s are down 7-3 and on their way to falling three behind the Angels and back down to .500.
But realistically, they haven’t played well enough to win. Too many mistakes.
Not sure who I feel more sorry for, Ben Broussard or the guy whose ERA he keeps driving up. That would be Jarrod Washburn, who hasn’t pitched all that badly tonight despite being down 6-2 heading into the fifth inning. Washburn was victimized, like so many other pitchers, by a two-run homer by Vladimir Guerrero in the first inning.
Since then, he’s been victimized by Broussard’s defense in left field. Broussard was anything-but-elegant in the third inning when he misread a ball off Guerrero’s bat and let it shoot over his head for an RBI double. Besides giving away an out, the misjudged ball left two runners in scoring position and resulted in two further runs scoring with two out later on in the inning.
But all the damage still wasn’t done.
Broussard misjudged another shot to left center by Jose Molina in the fourth that resulted in a leadoff double. Molina would later come around to score on a single by Orlando Cabrera.
So, that’s four added runs right there. The four runs that Seattle now trails by. This is what happens when a guy hasn’t started in left field since 2002. With the pitchers the Angels have, including a rested bullpen, I figure the Mariners have about two more innings to make this a game.
The six runs Washburn allowed in the first four innings? One more than in his last two combined starts. Not much else to say about tonight. Against a guy like Bartolo Colon, you can’t give that many runs away.



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