With the exception of the female species, nothing in my life has given me more joy or frustration than the game of baseball. Just like the never-ending winter this year, the Mariners continue to find ways to cast gloom over the Puget Sound. Todays 9-7 loss was a meltdown, but in comparison to the nightmare going on in the Gulf of Mexico our leaky bullpen is just a nuisance, but oh so hard to watch.Ian Snell started out today with his usual shaky outing and left the game in the 5th with a 7-2 lead. Snell has not won a game since last year and set the tone by giving up 4 walks in this game.
Yes you read it right, Snell left with a 7-2 lead in the 5th thanks mostly to the new catcher Eliezar Alfonso who had 3 hits today including a 3-run homer in the fourth off of Angels starter Joe Saunders. Josh Wilson and Figgins also had a couple of hits today as part of the Mariners 13-hit attack. The Mariners offense however fizzled late in the game when they had opportunities to add-on.
But todays game was lost by the leaky Mariners bullpen plain and simple. Jesus Colome started things off by giving up a couple of walks in the 5th including a bases loaded walk that forced in a run. Texeira came in next and walked in a run himself before getting yanked for Shawn Kelley. Kelley pitched decent despite having a run score on a catcher’s interference to Matsui making it 7-5 in the sixth. In the 7th the Angels picked up another run off Kelley to make it 7-6 with a home-run by Kendrick, just out of the reach of Gutierrez who climbed the fence in a good effort.
The Mariners escaped the 8th inning unscathed, thanks to a great play by Josh Wilson who threw out Aybar going to second on a rare slap-bunt single. By the time we reached the 9th inning my gut told me the struggling Aardsma was going to choke like his other drunken sailor shipmates from the bullpen. And sure enough for the second day in a row the Angels hit a walk off homer, this time it was Howie Kendrick connecting for his second home run of the day and rounding the bases to a much mellower reception at home after the injury to Morales yesterday.
Once again our boys had a chance to win a series and stay alive after Oakland lost earlier. One can only hope after this meltdown that the Mariners bring up at least Luke French to use either as a starter or in the pen. I can’t see Snell remaining in the rotation nor Colome in the pen. Aardsma,League and Texiara all seem to be shaky as well leaving us in a real jam as far as the relief staff goes. I was planning on going to the game tomorrow for my birthday but think I will head to the folk life festival instead and try to get some distance from this dysfunctional team. I’ll tell you one thing I’m going to need a relationship counselor to make it through this season with the Mariners if things keep going this way! http://jeffsmariners.com