It’s become glaringly obvious that the Mariners cannot put a major league caliber offense out on the field most nights and the fans are getting tired of it.
I wrote in our earlier editions of tonight’s paper that the Mariners have gone nearly four weeks without winning consecutive games. Believe it or not, this team hasn’t won two in a row since April 23-24 in Anaheim. The Mariners pulled a similar stunt last season, going a month and a day without consecutive wins from April to may before taking two in a row from San Diego on May 17 and 18.
You’re not going to be a playoff team that way. And you won’t win two in a row, or three or four or five, without scoring.
It’s a shame, really, because Brandon Morrow threw the best he has all year tonight, overwhelming the Angels in the sixth and seventh. He retired six in a row, striking out three.
“My command was much better, but I was also changing speeds a lot more,” Morrow said.
Morrow figured he threw about five change-ups, coming in about 88 mph to offset his 98 mph fastball. I talked about this bullpen last night and how it can overpower opponents late. If Morrow is added to that mix, you’ll have about four closer types to throw at opponents late in games — along with Mark Lowe, David Aardsma and Miguel Batista. Sean White has thrown 95 mph as well and isn’t looking too shabby. That’s raw power. A playoff-type bullpen.
Unfortunately, this is a last-place type offense.
Don Wakamatsu explained why he gambled by sending Ichiro in that fifth inning. He’d tried to bunt the runners over earlier on, but Franklin Gutierrez fouled a pitch off, then popped out when the bunt sign was removed.
“I think sometimes, offensively, when you’re not scoring some runs you’ve got to try to be aggressive,” Wakamatsu said. “And obviously it backfired and I’ll take all responsibility for that.”
Yes, Adrian Beltre collected a pair of hits. We’ll see what that does. Mike Sweeney agreed it would be important to the team if Beltre’s bat finally shows up.
“He doesn’t say much but he’s an emotional leader,” Sweeney said. “He’s going to swing the bat just fine. He’s obviously going through one of the tougher times he’ll ever go through. Based on his last few at-bats tonight he looks like he’s coming out of it.”
But Beltre alone won’t get this thing turned around.
“We just need to ‘Man up’ and get the job done,” Sweeney said. “Because tonight we didn’t do it.”