M’s Q-3 report: Standings, Trends, Offense

“When the unexpected becomes the expected, strange becomes familiar.” — Jason A. Churchill | May 20, 2016 At the halfway point of the 2016 season, the rotation of the Seattle Mariners was in disarray and their bullpen ineffective. It looked as if the Seattle’s season was quickly slipping away, especially after going 10-18 during the month of June. Then, the calendar turned to July and the Mariners slowly regained their footing and crawled back into the contention with just over 40 games remaining. So, how did the Mariners reverse course?…

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Building a roster for Safeco

From the moment Jerry Dipoto became general manager of the Seattle Mariners, he’s emphasized the need to build a roster capable of taking advantage of the expansive Safeco Field dimensions. As I see it, the 48-year-old executive envisions a foundation of athletic and accomplished players, who are adept at reaching base and wreaking havoc through productive aggressiveness on the bases. Equally important are outfield defenders who can run down balls in Safeco’s spacious outfield. In Dipoto’s world, a run save is as valuable as a run scored. To be honest,…

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M’s Mid-Season: Standings, Trends, Offense

“When the unexpected becomes the expected, strange becomes familiar.” — Jason A. Churchill | May 20, 2016 Forty games into the 2016 season, hopes and expectations were soaring for the Seattle Mariners. Then, unexpectedly, one of the best teams in Major League Baseball (MLB) became one of the worst in the span of just six weeks. The team that could do no wrong suddenly couldn’t catch a break. What exactly caused the Mariners’ downward spiral? Can the team get back on track and compete for a postseason berth? Considering the…

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M’s Mid-Season Report: Bench, Injuries & Roster

“When the unexpected becomes the expected, strange becomes familiar.” — Jason A. Churchill | May 20, 2016 Forty games into the 2016 season, hopes and expectations were soaring for the Seattle Mariners. Then, unexpectedly, one of the best teams in Major League Baseball (MLB) became one of the worst in the span of just six weeks. The team that could do no wrong suddenly couldn’t catch a break. What exactly caused the Mariners’ downward spiral? Can the team get back on track and compete for a postseason berth? Considering the…

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Seattle Mariners deadline deal primer

The Major League Baseball non-waiver trading deadline is nearing and Seattle Mariners fans are anxious to see how general manager Jerry Dipoto handles the club’s roster during his first “deadline season” in Seattle. With that in mind, I’ve been doing “primers” for each American League (AL) West division club to see how the club’s rivals stack up as the August 1 trade deadline approaches. In recent days, I’ve discussed each of Seattle’s divisional rivals — the Oakland Athletics, Los Angeles Angels, Houston Astros, and Texas Rangers. Now, it’s time to…

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Dipoto and his layers of depth

It’s early June and the Seattle Mariners are dealing with injuries. Every club faces the same challenge. It’s part of baseball. Sometimes, injuries are short-term. Other times, they have season-changing consequences. So far, the Mariners’ injury losses haven’t changed the course of their season. That’s good news for a club with a realistic shot to remain competitive for the entire season and — possibly — earn their first postseason berth since 2001. This year is different in Seattle. The notion that the Mariners could actually be different in 2016 —…

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Good defense is catching on with Mariners

With 30 games behind them, the Seattle Mariners sit atop the American League (AL) West division standings with an 18-12 win-loss record. That’s right; the club that’s failed to be relevant for most of the last decade is actually off to a quick start. Every sophisticated baseball fan knows that a good record with less than 20-percent of the season completed means nothing — especially with the Mariners. For those not familiar with Seattle’s plight, the situation has become so frustrating that having a winning record on Mother’s Day is…

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Run Mariners! Run!

The upcoming three-game series between the Kansas City Royals and the Seattle Mariners gave me reason to pause for a moment and consider the trajectory of both ball clubs since the end of the 2014 season. Seattle finished with just two fewer wins than the Royals, who went on to win the American League (AL) Championship before losing the World Series to the San Francisco Giants. After doing unexpectedly well in 2014, the Mariners and Royals entered last season with many pundits projecting a deep postseason run for both clubs.…

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