A little different look in the outfield with Endy Chavez starting in right field and Dustin Ackley bumped over to left field. Acting manager Robby Thompson talked about getting Chavez a start before yesterday’s game.
It will be interesting to see how Erasmo Ramirez does against this line-up and with Angel Hernandez behind the plate. Ideally, the Mariners need him to go seven innings. Charlie Furbush and Oliver Perez are likely unavailable today. That still leaves Brandon Maurer, Lucas Leutge, Yoervis Medina and Danny Farquhar available. But the Mariners also have three games in Oakland before the off day on Thursday.
“Charlie says he’s ready to,” Thompson said. “I think Ollie needs a day. But we’d definitely like to stay away from both of them.”
Perez has fallen off the pitching cliff in the last month. Look at his numbers since July 19.
Those numbers are gross. So what’s the issue?
“He’s just not controlling the counts very well,” pitching coach Carl Willis said. “I think earlier in the year, we saw a lot more first pitch strikes, which allowed him to utilize his slider, change speeds and get the hitter guessing. Right now, he’s just beside in way too many counts.”
Perez’s routine hasn’t changed. He isn’t bothered by injury. His mechanics are essentially the same.
“More than anything else, arm side, the ball just seems to be running away from him a little bit,” Willis said. “From a mechanical standpoint, everything still looks the same. Whether it’s a little bit of fatigue, that’s possible. Hopefully, we can resolve it quickly.”
As for Michael Morse, it seems as though the Mariners are showcasing him a little in hopes of a waivers trade before August 31. Baltimore and Texas are both looking for DH type hitters. But right now, Morse is only hurting his trade value. His numbers since returning from the DL are abysmal.
If you watch closely, pitchers are just busting fastballs in on his hands. And Morse won’t lay off of them or get his hands through fast enough to pull them down the line and hit them hard. It’s well known that his power is to center and right field when he gets his massive arms extended. Well pitchers are not letting him do that. And when he does get a pitch out and over the plate, he is missing them.
“It’s selection,” Thompson said. “They are pounding him in and a lot of those pitches he’ getting jammed are actually off the plate and in. Until he lays off those or can cheat and get out and maybe even pull those balls foul with authority then maybe they’ll stay away. But right now, until he makes an adjustment, they are just going to keep pounding him in there.”