The Seattle Mariners were thought before the season began to be a contender vs. the MLB odds in the American League West.
What were people thinking? The Mariners have the second-worst record in the American League and continually struggle vs. baseball odds.
MLB odds still favor the Mariners at times because they have Felix Hernandez and Cliff Lee. Even when those two pitchers go to the mound the Mariners are not guaranteed to win. The best pitcher for the Mariners this season has been Doug Fister but he is on the DL. When Hernandez and Lee go to the mound the Mariners can at least be competitive but not with Fister hurt, the rest of the rotation is horrible. And that is not the biggest problem for Seattle. The fact that they can’t hit a lick is an even bigger concern.
The Mariners thought the addition of Chone Figgins would make them tough to stop in terms of scoring runs. Figgins started slowly this season though and the Mariners didn’t do anything to pick up the slack. Figgins is hitting a little better but there is no one to drive him in. Jose Lopez has been very disappointing and Franklin Gutierrez is not a number three hitter. Milton Bradley has had his moments when he is in the lineup but the team badly misses Russell Branyan who they inexplicably let get away to Cleveland. The Mariners were getting some good play out of Mike Sweeney but he is now hurt. Ken Griffey Jr. was so bad that he retired. When a team can’t hit and with only two reliable starters, they are going to lose more often than not. The bullpen hasn’t helped matters as closer David Aaardsma has already blown four saves and the middle relief has been awful.
Seattle is probably going to trade Cliff Lee and look to next season. The team simply has played poorly most of the season and it may already be too late to save the season. The team needs Fister and Sweeney to get healthy and they need Aaardsma to close out games like he should. That would at least make them competitive and give them some hope heading into the second half of the season.