The Mariners are 3-0 for the third time in franchise history after a sweep of the Los Angeles Angels on the road.
I know, it’s early. But it’s fun to read some of the early buzz for a change.
Here’s what national media are saying about the Mariners entering Thursday’s series opener in Oakland against the A’s.
The Angels were outscored, 26-8, by the Mariners and went 1 for 19 with runners in scoring position. They struck out nine times Wednesday against James Paxton, a 25-year-old left-hander who gave up two hits in seven scoreless innings of his fifth big league start. (Josh) Hamilton struck out four times in the game.
It has been just 27 innings, or three games, not even 2 percent of MLB’s marathon six-month season that tests will, focus and luck, in addition to talent. But the Angels have not looked good at all so far.
Of all the contenders in the West, I think Seattle has the best chance to be a sleeper, but they’re still thin in the rotation. Once you get past King Felix, it starts to go downhill pretty quickly. I feel about (Justin) Smoak pretty much the way I feel about Mitch Moreland.
But if you’re looking for a surprise team for 2014 — this year’s Pirates or Indians — the Mariners may very well be your best bet. By surprise team, I mean a team that finished below .500 the year before; I’d suggest expanding that to all that finished under .500 in each of the past two seasons. That eliminates teams such as the Giants or Angels who were pretty good in 2012 (the Giants won the World Series, of course) and wouldn’t exactly be a surprise if they contended.
Maybe it’s a relief to the Angels that they’re leaving town.
Home was no comfort. The first three games of the season were a washout, a bad dream they’d like to forget. Give them a mulligan.
A Seattle Mariners team that finished fourth in the American League West last season — ahead of only the worst team in baseball, Houston — is off to its first 3-0 start in 19 years after punctuating a season-opening sweep of the Angels with an 8-2 victory at Angel Stadium.