UPDATED WITH QUOTES
Seeing isn’t always believing. Above, you can see Jack Wilson trotting around the bases in the ninth after his first American League home run. Must have been a good night, right? No, sir. That two-run shot made the final score look a little better, but the M’s were thumped 8-4 by the Kansas City Royals.
Anyhow, Wilson needs all the hits he can get. He’s been 1-for-14 on the homestand before his single in the seventh and came into the game batting just .213 for the Mariners since his July 29 trade from the National League.
Wilson admitted it’s been tough getting to know the pitchers in the AL after nine years in Pittsburgh.
“Being in the National League the past nine years, I kind of know everything about everybody,” he said.
It’s been a little easier his last four starts, all against pitchers he saw while with the Pirates — including Kyle Davies of the Royals. Wilson didn’t get a hit off Davies tonight, but has been working OT on studying video and charts of opposing hurlers.
The big thing is seeing the ball as it comes out of the pitchers’ hands — which is tough to do when you haven’t faced them before.
The Royals had no trouble seeing the ball out of Doug Fister’s hand tonight.
Even if they did have a little trouble, it took so long for the pitches to get to the plate that they had plenty of time to adjust. That’s the problem when soft-tossers like Davies don’t get enough downward angle on their pitches. They come in flat and juicy and, well, we saw what happened.
“I just kind of struggled at keeping the ball low and executing the location of the pitches,” Fister said.
He had trouble with all of them — fastball, curveball and change-up. He said he was releasing the ball too soon and struggled all night to make in-game adjustments.
The last time the Royals hit four jacks in a game? The opposing starter was some no-name dude named Cliff Lee. One of the homers was hit by Mike Sweeney. It was back in May 2007. No, the Royals are not a very good team.
In fact, they’d has a .289 winning percentage since the All-Star Break.
Oh well, that’s baseball. You get balls up in the zone, bad things happen. Fister now had four days to work on it. Life didn’t end as we know it. Felix Hernandez is back out there tomorrow night looking to sharpen his Cy Young Award pencil. Plenty of Cy Young hopefuls struggled this week — it’s still a wide open race.