Mariners Insider

Archives: July 2007


A Mariners Tradition: An Ace In Need Of Maturity

What do you do with an ace who has emotional problems?

If anyone should know, it would be the Seattle Mariners, who have specialized in that species over the last two decades.

Think Felix Hernandez lost his focus Sunday and cost Seattle a game?

Randy Johnson did that for two years before harnessing what became a Cy Young Award-winning career that will land him in the Hall of Fame.

Freddy Garcia won’t get to the Hall, but he would storm around the mound after bad calls, scream at teammates after

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This Isn’t Supposed To B e How It’s Done

The Seattle Mariners remarkable run through their first 93 games – they’re now 54-39 and one game back in the American League West – is all the more stunning when you consider how they’ve gotten this far.

Their manager resigned.

Their opening night pitcher and staff ace has six wins.

Their opening night cleanup hitter is batting .203.

The man brought in to be their eighth inning setup man has an earned run average of 5.40.

Oh, and even their most optimistic fans were thinking anything over .500 would be a stretch.

For every

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Sheffield Vs. Umpires – The Truth Loses Out

When Jose Canseco became the official whistle blower in what has become baseball’s embarrassing steroids scandal, most folks thought his book was a case of a big-mouthed player doing what he’d done for years.

Offend people.

Turned out, of course, Canseco had more credibility than all those folks in the commissioner’s office who insisted they didn’t know what a steroid was – but were sure it wasn’t a problem in baseball.

Now comes Gary Sheffield, a guy most folks love to hate. Last month he threw a bat in disgust and plate umpire Greg Gibson filed a

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Richie Sexson – Is It Time To Take A Seat?

For all players, there comes a time when, as Lou Piniella once said, ‘you feel like you’re never going to get another hit.’

Richie Sexson has had a season like that, and after playing 81 games he is batting .201 with 15 home runs and 49 RBI. He has been moved from batting cleanup to hitting fifth and now sixth in the Seattle lineup.

Mike Hargrove sat him. John McLaren has dropped him in the lineup.

At issue is, does the team need to begin re-thinking what to do at first base?

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Expect A Quiet Trade Deadline For Seattle

As the July 31 trade deadline creeps toward us, fans across the majors whose teams are in contention set their sights on the bigger names in the game and find ways – or try – to acquire them.

It’s what separates fantasy baseball from the real thing.

The reality appears to be this: The Seattle Mariners will likely have Jeff Weaver and Horacio Ramirez in their starting rotation the rest of the season, barring injury. And the odds of a big hitter coming over are as slim as that No. 2 starting pitcher.

The Mariners have quietly

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Ichi and Ikky – A Man And His Dog

For a private man rarely given to introspection, Ichiro Suzuki took the occasion of announcing his five-year, $90 million contract extension to give people a peek into how he made the biggest decision of his career.

"I was moved when fans asked me to come to their cities," Ichiro said. "When I came back to Seattle, the fans here asked me to stay. That moment meant the most to me. That was when I decided to stay."

Well, that and the advice of his dog, Ikky.

"He said ‘woof, woof, woof,’ which meant ‘stay, stay, stay," Ichiro

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Did Managerial Change Impact Ichiro?

When Ichiro Suzuki visited the Seattle Mariners spring camp in 1999, one of the first relationships he formed was with Ken Griffey Jr.

One of the longest lasting friendships began that spring, too – Ichiro and then-coach John McLaren. In the years since, the two men have remained close, and no one in a Seattle uniform ever showed Ichiro more respect than McLaren.

So 10 days ago, when McLaren replaced Mike Hargrove as Mariners manager, and Ichiro was asked how he felt about helping McLaren win his first game.


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Jones Is Coming, Just Not Today

Adam Jones in a phenom enroute to the big leagues, but his star won’t arrive quite as quickly as the internet would have you believe.

Which says something about the internet, about Jones and about the Seattle Mariners.

No one would argue that Jones and his Tacoma numbers – .309, 21 home runs and 74 RBI in 81 games – aren’t precisely what major league teams covet. Seattle could trade him today and likely land something they want.

They won’t.

Neither will they bring him up today.

Being 2 ½ games out of first

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