Congrats to Kuma and The King ~ 2013 All-Stars

CONGRATULATIONS to the M’s collective 1-2 punch!!!

Felix named to his 4th ASG | Marinerds, etc. blog

Felix named to his 4th ASG | Marinerds, etc. blog

Kuma gets first ASG selection | NewsTribune

Kuma gets first ASG selection | NewsTribune

Felix earned his fourth All Star selection and Hisashi his first. If the rotation stays as is – Kuma would be scheduled to pitch the Sunday before the ASG which, in recent years, would deem him ineligible to actually pitch in the game. But, some changes in the CBA have changed that . . . Larry’s run down of the new rules

Iwakuma, however, is scheduled to start for the Mariners next Sunday, the last day before the All-Star break. If that happens, MLB rules dictate he may opt to be replaced on the American League roster, or be limited to one inning.  Iwakuma would still attend the game at New York’s Citi Field and go through all the festivities and be introduced with the team.

Iwakuma has the lowest ERA in the American League (2.60), followed by Hernandez at No. 2 (2.69). Iwakuma also has the lowest WHIP in the AL (0.88) to go with a 7-4 record. Hernandez is 8-4 and ranks fourth in the AL with 130 strikeouts. Iwakuma’s chances seemed to have dimmed with a stretch of four starts in which he went 0-3 with a 5.54 ERA to raise his ERA from 1.79, but his body of work over 18 starts prevailed.

Unfortunately, no Rauuuuuuul . . .

 

Alex Liddi traded to the O’s and International Draft picks swapped . . .

The Mariners have traded third baseman/first baseman Alex Liddi and their international signing slot No. 3 for the Orioles’ international signing slot No. 2.

Liddi is reportedly headed for the Orioles’ Triple A affiliate in Norfolk.

Liddi, 24, has appeared in 8 games with the Mariners this season (.059/1×17), spending most of the season with AAA Tacoma. With the Rainiers he is batting .263 (63×240) with 11 home runs and 43 RBI. Liddi was originally signed by the Mariners as an international free agent on Sept. 9, 2005. The native of Sanremo, Italy is the first Italian-born and developed player to appear in a Major League game.

This basically gives the Mariners more money to spend on the international free agent market.

Liddi was designated for assignment when the Mariners called up Brad Miller. The team had 10 days to either release, trade or outright Liddi. With the Orioles likely to claim him off of waivers, the Mariners picked up some more money on the international market instead.

 

Good news on the bullpen front . . .

g64 | when the pitching comes through, the bats do not

Mariners 1 | Yankees 2

I decided at the last minute to attend the game today. It would have been SO worth it if the M’s had pulled it out. As it was, the loss made my mound of chores and errands put off all the more daunting. Oh well, at least there was that bit of history in seeing Mariano Rivera throw his last pitch ever at Safeco Field which resulted in his 23rd save of the season and a series win for the Yanks . . .

ON THE MOUND
Felix really had to work hard today (especially in the first TWO innings, where he threw 40 pitches and gave up both his walks and his only run). Despite his great final line, it just seemed like he never truly got into a groove. He also didn’t get a lotta help from his defense and, there was a bit of a scare in the 7th – after he got the first two batters out, Rick Griffin came out to the mound with Wedge. Not sure what the issue was but, he stayed in and struck out Gardner on THREE pitches for the final out.

SEVEN innings ~ FIVE hits ~ ONE earned run ~ TWO walks ~ SEVEN strikeouts

} the bullpen of Charlie + Yoervis + Ollie wasn’t particularly sharp today, giving up a couple walks, a couple hits and the go ahead run in the 9th

AT THE PLATE
The M’s made Phelps work a bit in the first couple of innings as well. Jason led off the 1st with a single and Kyle walked with two outs but they couldn’t capitalize. In the 2nd, they were able to tie it up: Kelly had a great NINE pitch AB that resulted in a double and Alex walked (his first time on base since his call up) and Brendan singled to get Kelly home and tie the game.

But, 1-1 is where it would stay until the 9th. In fact, Phelps faced the minimum in innings 3-7.

Alex had a lead off double in the 8th but, after a sac bunt by Brendan, Jason and Nick struck out to end the threat.

There was a glimmer of hope in the 9th when Kyle roped a single (extending his hitting streak to 13) on the first pitch but, Kendrys killed the hope by grounding into a double play (I’m thinking he needs to sit out a game or two and rest that back, clearly he’s not been himself the past few games). Raul was intentionally, unintentionally walked and hope rose again when Chavez, pinch hitting for Kelly hit a single but, as I tweeted above – that was all she wrote.

IN THE FIELD
There was a nice DP turned in the 2nd but, other than that, the defense looked a bit sub-par today (Brendan with a throwing error allowing a runner to be safe at 1B) and Nick with an attempt at a back hand that failed

tweets of the game . . .

(there was a conspicuous absence of tweets during the game but, found this one much later)

 

g152 | Series Win!!! (and SEASON series TIE)

Mariners 1 | Rangers 0

Yes, the RISP woes continued…
M’s were 0-6 in such opportunities.
Good news was, the Rangers were 0-8 🙂

Beavan has been great vs. his old team all season and tonight was no exception…
8hits – 0runs – 1walk – 2strikeouts
the M’s and R’s had another 1-0 contest earlier in the season in Arlington which the Rangers won – Blake was the pitcher in that one as well.
He can field his position too – a batted ball hit his foot and he was able to spin around, get the ball and fire a rocket to Smoak at 1B for the out

Ted S. Warren | AP

Kinney was IMPRESSIVE…
after Beavan gave up a double and a walk to start the 8th, Josh came in and got a two strikeouts and a ground ball

Closing time passed without the need for tums…
THREE ground ball outs (including a bit of a tricky hop that he handled) and The Bartender notched his 29th save (not too shabby considering he didn’t start closing until early June)

Jesus had a nice night…
two hits but even better behind the plate catching the impressive trio of Beavan-Kinney-Wilhelmsen
also – throwing out a would-be base-stealer AND getting an out at home plate on a relay.

Ted S. Warren | AP

Smoak also continued to perform well vs. his ex-teammates…
coming into this game he had a .400 BA and a 1.262 OPS

Ackley was still out with a sore neck, so Seager played 2B and Liddi was in at 3B…
not a good day for Alex … 0-3 w/3K’s

Another 2 DP’s from the DEE!

oh by the way…
12 consecutive games with at least one home run

g47 | strikingly bad…

Mariners 0 | Angels 3

Well, THAT was disappointing.

Needless to say, watching (in person) the M’s lose to the Halos by striking out 14 times against Haren was NOT the greatest way to start my 4-day weekend. At least the young adults sitting behind me (two gals and three guys) were entertaining – the gals were explaining the game to the guys 🙂

I didn’t have a great vibe even before Albert’s homer…
Vargas seemed to be pitching in molasses or something – he was taking  F O R E V E R  between pitches. But, all things considered, his final line was respectable and definitely gave them a chance to win. And, Delabar was great – two hitless/scoreless innings with 3K’s. So, the pitching, as expected was not the problem vs. the Angels who have scored even fewer runs than the M’s

‘t was all about the bats – or lack thereof…
vs. really good pitching. Haren hasn’t gotten off to the greatest of starts – and unfortunately, he was able to take a huge leap in the right direction vs. the M’s. Wedge was not at all in a “cap-tipping” move after the game and no bones about his displeasure with his post game comments. He said that Haren was pitching exactly the same in the 9th as he was in the 1st because the M’s hitters made absolutely no adjustments. Here’s hoping they learn to adjust, with Liddi leading the charge. FOUR has been his number the last couple games : 4 RBI on one swing on Wednesday vs. the Rangers, 4 K’s on Thursday night vs. the Halos…

Elaine Thompson | AP

Prior to the game…
Miguel Olivo was activated from the DL and Casper Wells was sent to Tacoma

g46 | Millwood mows and Liddi launches…

Mariners 5 | Rangers 3

of course, due to the early start, I was unable to watch or listen (and was green with envy toward some of my co-workers who got to enjoy an outing at The Safe today!!) But, I kept track here and there via GameDay…

What has gotten into “old man Millwood”?!?
first the Yankees in NY…
then the Rockies in Colorado…
and now the Rangers at The Safe???

SIX innings – THREE hits – ZERO runs – ONE walk – TWO strikeouts
those are good numbers against ANY team – against the Rangers, they are GREAT
way to go, Kevin!

The 7th was a bit curious…
it took THREE pitchers to get through FOUR batters for THREE out – but, they did it.

The Bartender made things a bit too interesting in the 8th…
a single, a steal, a double, a home and boom! the Rangers had THREE runs

Maybe Tom just wanted to ensure Brandon of the save opportunity…
which he seized completely (without so much as a lead off walk even!)
Cruz fly out, Torrealba strike out, Napoli strike out

Nice to see Jesus catching the dreaded “day game after a night game”…
and he’s still standing (posted a double and ANOTHER walk (his 6th in 11 games – he had 2 in April)

Offense posted only FOUR hits, but SIX walks and…
oh, yeah – this Italian kid, Liddi, hit one a LONG way with the bases loaded

Otto Greule, Jr | Getty Images

Whadaya know?!?
the M’s not only won a series against the Rangers, they managed to hold them to only SEVEN runs on FOUR hits and strikeout TWENTY-FOUR in the 3-game set.

by the way, apparently Italian grand slams are a bit on the rare side…

Liddi’s slam was just the second in major league history by an Italian born player. Reno Bertoia hit a grand slam on May 7, 1958, for Detroit against Washington.

g45 | hard luck Hector

Mariners 1 | Rangers 3

AWESOME performance by Hector!
~ just one rough inning, really only one mistake pitch – a hanger to Andrus for a 2-run triple in the 3rd
~ love how he has continued to improve and am REALLY impressed how he worked this lineup
8IP – 3H – 3R – 2BB – 7K
He only allowed ONE hit after the 3rd (and Luegte and Delabar combined for a 1 hit 0 rin inning)

Offense started out so well…
a Liddi walk, an Ichiro single and a Smoak single had the M’s on the board in the first
then Seager walked to load the bases and Wells  a l m o s t   hit one out  to really break it open but, Hamilton showed that he is not JUST a hitter (and later he would similarly rob Liddi of at least a double)

Ted Warren | AP

M’s actually outhit the Rangers 7 to 4 and they each had 2 walks

But, they just couldn’t put it all together tonight when it counted.

Rubber game tomorrow….