Mariners Lose Series Opener to White Sox, Felix Struggles, Michael Saunders Takes Ball to Face

I apologize for a late and abbreviated recap. I mean, today was Felix day, what kind of guy am I to not write 1500 words on his rough outing? Well I got home from work exhausted, and took an unintentional nap. Then I started cooking dinner about the 6th inning. I used part beef, part pork sausage, diced fresh jalapeno and I cubed some cheddar and included it in the burger. Then I had some garlic waffle fries, but they came out of the over right at the end of the game. No rally fries.

Felix Hernandez wasn’t sharp today. He walked four in five innings, and Eric Wedge even said that Felix had slight back discomfort after he slipped off the mound a little bit. Wedge said it wasn’t serious, but one thing that may be serious is Felix’s three homeruns allowed today, which puts him at a 1.0 HR/9, which is his highest pace since 2006 when he was 20 years old. I think we have rabbit ears as fans right now because Felix has decreased velocity, but until his last handful of starts he has been just as effective as in the past. It may not yet be time to worry, but we’re getting close.

Justin Smoak and Kyle Seager remain hot. Smoak hit two singles again, and while his recent power surge has done a lot to help his reputation, I’m still a little worried that it isn’t for real. I hope it is, because it’d be great for the Mariners if when they finally realized that Jesus Montero isn’t a catcher they have someone to split time with Montero at first base and DH, akin to what the White Sox do with Paul Konerko and Adam Dunn, only about 10 years younger.

The Mariners came really close to going into the bottom of the 9th tied, until Michael Saunders mis-gloved a line drive to center field that would end up ricocheting off his glove and then his face. He’s been really great in center this year but that was a critical error.

The Mariners lost 7-4, and Michael Saunders may catch a lot of heat for this game. He’s been a lot better than expected this year, and he may continue to be better than expected. I say this of course, expecting that you’re not a person who views batting average as the one and only metric of player value.

  • Anonymous

    Saunders with a nearly average ML bat is a better than average big league player.  Having lost the game hopefully he won’t lose the lesson.