Mariners Insider

Archives: May 2007


The Mariners Need To Make A Small Change

Sexson, Richie.jpg

Richie Sexson is a power hitter with resume – 278 home runs, 944 RBI – who has at least temporarily misplaced the ability to produce runs from the cleanup position.

Not surprisingly, it’s hurting the Seattle Mariners.

A good part of managing is putting players in the right position, and it’s hard to argue that Sexson began the season as a viable candidate to bath fourth. Right now though, it would be hard to put a less productive hitter there.

Sexson may rebound – he certainly did in 2006.

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It’s Been A Tough Start For Mariners Cynics

After three years in oblivion, it’s small wonder that the inhabitants of Mariners Nation are confused.

If they root for what has become a tenacious, enjoyable team to watch are they endorsing general manager Bill Bavasi and manager Mike Hargrove? And if they continue to call for the jobs of those men, are they ignoring the fact the ’07 Mariners are a better team than they’ve seen here in years?

For all the off-season wailing and ranting, offensive additions Jose Vidro and Jose Guillen are contributing to a lineup that continues to impress American League pitchers.


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Mariners Passed One Small Test In Long Season

The Mariners got to the Ides of May at 17-16, and considering what they went through and what it took to get here, that’s no small accomplishment.

Now, they’ve got the chance to do better.

With Felix back in the rotation and Mr. Weaver sitting it out for now, with Horacio Ramirez confident in new, simplified mechanics and Jarrod Washburn pitching marvelously, Seattle has a chance to make up ground in the next few weeks.

They face the Angels three times at home this week, three more in Anaheim in two weeks. That should go a long

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Mr. Weaver Takes A Break

As injuries go, this one was timely.

After an 0-6 start, pitcher Jeff Weaver was placed on the disabled list Friday with shoulder tendinits – a usually painful inflammation. Weaver couldn’t recall when it might have started.

The truth is, there’s no downside to letting the journeyman right-hander try to strengthen his shoulder and right arm. Against Detroit on Thursday, he couldn’t break 90 mph, and there wasn’t much movement on any of his pitches.

Without one or the other, no one gets outs in the major leagues.

So forget Mr. Weaver for now, let Cha

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The Search For Perfection Never Ends

Getting to the major leagues is the pinnacle for a professional ballplayer, but it’s not the end of the development of any man’s game.

Take Wednesday as an example.

Three major league players – second baseman Jose Lopez, catcher Kenji Johjima and pitcher Horacio Ramirez – continued working on one small aspect of their skill set.

In the case of Lopez, it was his turning of the double play, and his tendency to reach for the throw one-handed when he was in the pivot. Going out with both hands, making a quicker exchange to throw, will improve

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A Matter of Perspective …

It’s rare when two baseball teams – and their respective fans – share the same perspective during a series.

The Seattle Mariners, for instance, lost a poorly pitched game to Detroit, 9-7.

Tigers fans were delighted with the team’s eighth consecutive win, not minding so much that starter Jeremy Bonderman allowed five earned runs, or that it took every bit of nine runs to win.

The Mariners? Conventional wisdom has them stumbling through this trip, and those who have wanted a general manager and manager fired since spring training are as fervent as ever.

What’s the

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Another Look At May 15th …

As they prepare to face a wide-eyed rookie who needed help getting past security guards at Yankee Stadium today, the Seattle Mariners would take a split of the last four games on this trip – and fans probably would, too.

They have their hands full here in New York, and in Detroit an even better team is waiting, and mauling the competition.

Against the Tigers, Seattle will start Horacio Ramirez, Cha Seung Baek and Jeff Weaver – then fly home to begin a home stand with the New York Yankees coming in first.

Back in March, it

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A Second Mateo Tragedy

A year in a quiet Mariners clubhouse, Julio Mateo talked to me about his dead brother, and said without his wife, Aurea, he wasn’t sure he’d have survived the pain and loss.

On Saturday in New York, Mateo sat in a police station and gave his explanation of what happened during a fight with Aurea – one that left her in need of five stitches and authorities looking for Mateo.

Domestic violence can have no supporters, and whatever Mateo’s reputation is among baseball fans and teammates, this likely will change it.

The Mariners will await the

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