Monday ramblings

If you thought I was an RA Dickey fan when he was here in Seattle, this pretty much seals it. I’m not a full-on nerd, but I do run with nerds, so I have a soft spot for this kind of nerdery. I do wish we were playing the Mets this year because I would plant myself by the bullpen and take pictures until my trigger finger was cramped, but alas, no such luck. As it is, I will have my plate  full with going to Orioles and Phillies games this year.

Yesterday’s loss was a bummer, but folks on Twitter made it sound like we just lost a very serious series. I find that funny, because I’m pretty sure that none of those people thought that we’d even win the five games that we won on this road trip. Five out of six played? I’ll take it. Obviously, everyone has their hopes, but it’s interesting how after a sweep of one team, expectations get so much higher than they should ever be. I think five wins on a 6-game road trip for these Mariners is not too shabby. Line to complain about my attitude forms to the left, please.

The catch that Ichiro couldn’t shade well enough to get it out of the sun is unfortunate, but not the end of the world.  I have been quietly critical of Ichiro this year because I see a lot of defensive badness coming out of his corner, things that I haven’t seen over the past three years of watching him. That play (or lack thereof) was confusing to me, because while it was a mistake that anyone could have made, it’s not one that I’ve ever seen Ichiro make before. To me, Ichiro has always been absolutely flawless when it comes to defense; so seeing these “mistakes that anyone could make” coming out of someone who is, for all intents and purposes, a living highlight reel is a little disturbing. His offense doesn’t seem to have waned much, so I’m not going to panic, but this is kind of a new thing for me.

I have decided that instant replay makes me even more frustrated with Chone Figgins defense than I am normally. Late in the game yesterday, Jarrod Saltalamacchia lined out over Figgins head for a single. Initially seeing the play, Figgins’ size would have worked against him anyway, because he simply couldn’t jump as high as the ball was traveling. But instant replay shows Figgins jumping fractions of seconds before he should have. The ball was still traveling towards his position as he was on his way back to the ground from his jump. I find myself wondering how many other replays would show the same thing on Figgins jumps. Being generally pro-Figgins, I am not happy even having to bring it up; but if that’s the sort of thing he is doing on plays he could never make anyway, what’s going on with the plays he could make and misses? I get the impression that Figgins thinks that Mariners fans are against him, with his clipped answers to reporters and general demeanor in talking to the local press. I wonder if he’s ever stopped to ask himself why? Even though I know it sounds like it, I am not trying to Chone-bash. Just wishing things were different, that’s all. I still cheer him on every time he comes to bat, still root for him to do well, still like him better in a Mariners uniform than in Angels red.

I’ll be at two games this week, so I get both Michael Pineda and a Jason Vargas starts. I am also very much looking forward to the food, ever since I discovered the tortas down by the bullpen. If you haven’t had them yet, you are really really missing out. Great sandwiches.

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4 Responses to Monday ramblings

  1. Patrick says:

    Your ‘criticism’ of Ichiro is very very mild compared to what Salk was posting on twitter yesterday after the infamous sun play, yikes.

    • Megan Shear says:

      Yeah, I was reading that – a little overboard. But I don’t think Salk has ever really seen the value in Ichiro anyway. There are a group of people who feel he’s overrated, and that is fine. I’m not going to jump into that particular fray. But I like Ichiro as a player, and I think he’s an unusual character, and it’s kind of distressing to see his defense deteriorate like it has been. He’s still better than your average fielder, but not as perfect as he once was, it would seem.

      • Patrick says:

        I don’t think his defense is deteriorating all that much, its certainly hard to see it from looking at UZR and UZR/150, of course his 2011 numbers look awful in that regard, but still way too earlier for UZR numbers to be reliable. And about Salk, he’s very stereotypical Boston sports media, criticizes players ALOT even for actions which they have little to no control over, he’s also very quick to say anything bad about the Mariners when they don’t play well. As interesting as he can be on the radio, sometimes he’s unbearable when being reactionary on twitter.

  2. Megan Shear says:

    Salk is interesting – he’s the same guy who was a Rob Johnson fan until the end, if you’ll remember. Heh. Everyone has their individual ways of looking at the game, and even though I might disagree with them, it’s still all baseball, and part of what makes things interesting.

    As far as the numbers, you’re probably right, and it’s too early – it’s easy to forget that it’s only just now May. And I think maybe “deterioration” might not have been the best word to use. I’m just seeing a lot of really odd things happen, kind of like when you’re watching a nature show, and a cheetah falls on its face instead of catching the animal it’s going after – it just looks weird and rare. I just don’t remember him doing this poorly.

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