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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What happened to Ketel Marte?

In early May, Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto made his feelings clear regarding his starting shortstop when told “Danny, Dave and Moore” of 710 ESPN Seattle “I’ve said from the day I got here, maybe the most surprising player of those that I was fortunate enough to inherit is Ketel Marte.” Dipoto had good reasons for heaping praise on Marte. After a sluggish start to the season, the 22-year-old had a .303 batting average and .328 on-base percentage (OBP) on May 10, plus his defense had significantly improved. It…

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Looking for trade clues in Dipoto’s past

Since arriving in Seattle, Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has proven to be an aggressive deal maker. Thanks to his efforts, the Mariners are on the edge of contention as the club approaches the all-star break. A winning record during the first week of July has been a rare occurrence in Seattle. So, naturally, fans want the front office to aggressively pursue upgrades in the trade market. They’re tired of the franchise’s 14-season playoff drought, which happens to be the longest current streak of futility in the majors. With that…

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The Mariners versatility matrix

Prior to his decision to sign a one-year deal with the Texas Rangers, I don’t recall any pundits suggesting former Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond as a good fit for the Rangers. I certainly didn’t expect that he’d end up with a team that already has Elvis Andrus at shortstop and Rougned Odor manning second base. On top of that, the organization has young middle infielders like Jurickson Profar and Hanser Alberto ready to burst onto the scene. The signing of the 30-year-old was a surprise, but how the Rangers…

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What to make of the Mariners’ spring thus far

We’re about halfway through the Cactus League schedule. The regular season begins in less than three weeks. The Seattle Mariners just got their ace, Felix Hernandez, his first official work in a spring game. The club’s position “battles” are well under way. Except position battles aren’t a real thing and spring results mean absolutely zero. Not kidding, spring training roster “battles” are not real, because the best “performer” isn’t the one that will necessarily win the job. In actuality they’re position “decisions” by the team and the results, as seen…

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Projected M’s 25-man Roster: Edition 1

Typically the majority of the jobs on a given big-league roster that are ‘open’ have a heavy favorite, and there are few ‘open’ job with which to begin. The Seattle Mariners’ roster is just about solved, but there are a few questions yet to be answered, including the following: Will the club carry a first-base platoon? as I have noted many times, it’s not a great idea, but if the club does carry one, there are several candidates in camp. Who will win the first-base platoon gig? The candidates are:…

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Three Mariners facing uncertainty

New Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has repeatedly discussed adding “layers of depth” to his organization roster since taking over the club’s baseball operations four months ago. Accordingly, he’s added 17 new players to the club’s 40-man roster and extended Spring Training invites to over a dozen non-roster players. Despite Dipoto’s hectic pace, he didn’t throw out the baby out with the bathwater. The 47-year-old retained 23 players from the Jack Zduriencik era for good reason; his best players were already with the team when he became general manager.…

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Concerns on M’s lack of Triple-A depth

One of the first things mentioned by new Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto upon his hiring was how the club lacked general depth, particularly in the upper minors. Many clubs welcomed impact and contributing rookies to their rosters this past season. But Seattle’s inability to develop talent at the higher minor league levels during Jack Zduriencik’s tenure nearly left the Mariners out of the aptly named ‘year of the rookie’ in 2015. Ketel Marte and Carson Smith were major league contributors as rookies though Seattle didn’t have a Kris…

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