Not the most enjoyable game I’ve ever attended, and a loss is a loss but, it’s not like (even as rosy as I am) I really expected a win tonight. Not after the marathon yesterday in which EVERY position player played ALL SIXTEEN innings and then, add to that, an up/down Aaron Harang on the mound ~ it wasn’t a recipe that screamed success. So, the fact that the game ~as a whole~ ended up better than expected because of the performance of Blake Beavan was very encouraging. It’s not every day a reliever posts a quality start 😉
ON THE MOUND
Aaron Harang’s night in Seattle against the Yankees wasn’t quite as bad as Phil Hughes’ outing in New York against the Mariners (when he gave up 7 runs and didn’t get out of the 1st inning). In fact, things were looking manageable after the first TWO innings – a hit batsman the only base runner. Then came the 3rd and the melt-down ensued . . . FIVE singles, ONE double, TWO homers and SIX runs later, Aaron was out of the game.
Enter Blake Beavan, fresh back from Tacoma. I was worried that things weren’t going to get any better with this switch (in fact, part of me thought it might get worse). Was I glad to be wrong. Blake came in and not only ate innings (to save that depleted bullpen) but MOWED ’em down – retiring NINETEEN of the TWENTY batters he faced (and got the double play immediately after the single).
His performance really can’t be over-stated. They needed an outing like that because it helped in the immediate (resting a totally depleted bullpen) as well as provided some encouragement for the future, should Harang and Bonderman continue to struggle (whether it be as a long man or as the mop up dude. In any case, when was the last time a “reliever” posted a line like this?
6.2 innings ~ ONE hit ~ ZERO runs ~ ZERO walks ~ FOUR strikeouts
AT THE PLATE
Combine players who played SIXTEEN innings the day before and a pitcher who is “on his stick” and it’s not typically an easy day at the office. Phil Hughes was the total opposite of what the guys saw in NY in May. the only managed FOUR total hits (THREE off Hughes) and only ONE extra base hit (a Kyle Seager’s RBI double in the 8th).
IN THE FIELD
* nice double play in the 8th to erase the sole base-runner Blake allowed
* Jason put out the side in order in the 2nd
tweets of the game . . .