Thursday, August 04, 2005

The Coronation
By Zach

So Felix Hernandez made his major league debut today, becoming the first teenager to pitch in a big-league game since Todd Van Poppel in 1991. How'd he do? 5 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 4 K, 2 R (1 ER), 81 pitches, 49 for strikes. Was he worth all the hype? Well, it's obviously to early to tell, but he certainly didn't disappoint. No, he let the rest of the team do that, since they couldn't put a run on the board until the 7th inning, getting shut down by Tigers ace Sean Douglass.

Felix was hitting 97-98 on the gun, and finally got to thrown his slider in a game, so his stuff was there, at least to some extent. His last pitch of the game was a fastball to strike out Carlos Guillen to end the 5th, and he seems to reach back for a little something extra on that one.

Was it all I had hoped for? Well, a win would have been nice, but since he didn't get hurt like Jorge Campillo, I'll settle.

The bigger question is whether him being good is going to matter to the Mariners in the next year or two. Certainly, they have a few interesting players, but the truth of the matter is that unless the starting lineup they roll out next year is vastly improved from this year's, they're not going to be contending for anything in a good long while.


Blogger booth52 said...

the bavasi era is coming along splendidly in the emerald city, is it not?

do you think the expectations for the meche/pinero combo were set too high or do you feel they are just underperforming?

my favorite bavasi highlight was him backhandedly insulting cameron on his way out, by saying of winn something to the extent of:

we'll at least HE'll strike a lot less (than cameron). bravo bill.

12:58 AM  
Blogger Zachary Geballe said...

Both. We probably expected too much from Pineiro and his above-average stuff, and too much from Gil and his ragged arm. But on the other hand, Pineiro has been hard to figure out, especially considering his baffling lack of velocity (probably an undisclosed/undisclosed arm injury). Meche is just a head case.

But, of course, neither guy has done more than tease with their potential.

At the same time, I think Bill Bavasi has done the best he could with what ownership gives him to work with. It's not his fault they're cheap bastards.

1:54 AM  
Blogger David Arnott said...

Cheap bastards? Exsqueeze me? Baking powder? They've been upper-middle class as far as baseball teams go since at least 2001 (some might say 2000). No, the problem is one that Brian Sabean (Giants' GM, current whipping boy, and borderline lunatic) has actually addressed exceptionally well over the past few years: the M's GMs haven't left room in the budget for late-season moves. There's nothing wrong with owners "being able" to spend more money and simply not budgeting it to the team. We don't know their full financial pictures. Steve Schott, who used to own the A's, has said he intentionally kept Beane on a strict budget because 1)it guaranteed a certain level of profitability, and 2)it forced him to be more creative, so I'm sure the Nintendo people have their reasons for "only" budgeting 90 million dollars even though they're raking in the cash.

2:32 AM  
Blogger Zachary Geballe said...

David, my cheap bastards comment was directed solely at their inability to offer Gillick the money to go out and pick up players at the deadline. By insisting that he A) not add salary and B) not trade away any young pitchers they effectively killed any chance the team had of adding a hitter or two down the stretch in 2002 or 2003. And having a $85-90 million dollar payroll when you're #2 or #3 in baseball in revenue doesn't impress me. Remember, the taxpayers in Seattle spent $417 million to build Safeco Field, so I feel it's well within our rights to demand that the team shell out a couple million more dollars in late July when the team's contending and we're packing the seats.

10:25 AM  

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