Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Skid Reaches 10 Games Despite Some Offense
Before the game on Tuesday the players gathered together and had a meeting. No coaches, no press, just the players. Initiated by themselves in hopes to get their bats and their season turned around. For some, it may have been what they needed to hear, for others, well, they may need a lot more.
Michael Pineda was on the mound for the Mariners as they took to heart their pregame chat and got on the board in a hurry. After an Ichiro out, Brendan Ryan hit a double and quickly advanced to third on a stolen base. Dustin Ackley hit him in with a single. M's 1, Jays 0.
Bottom of the first the Jays bounced right back as Adam Lind hit a 2 run shot off Pineda to put them up 2 - 1 for a moment.
In the second the added on after Mike Carp doubled to lead off the inning, Figgins singled and Greg Halman followed with a three run homerun to left field. After an Ichiro out, Brendan Ryan followed with his first homerun of the year, a solo shot to left to put the Mariners up 5 - 2.
From then on it was a stand still until the 7th when Pineda ran into trouble. After a leadoff double by Aaron Hill and a one out walk to Cory Patterson, Pineda was up against the ropes. Yunel Escobar followed with a double that scored Hill and left Patterson at third base. M's 5, Jays 3. In came Aaron Laffey. Laffey gave up a sac fly that brought Patterson home, M's 5, Jays 4. In came Jeff Gray. Gray gave up a single to Jose Bautista that allowed Escobar to score and the game was tied.
The game stayed that way into extra frames, a lot of extra frames. In the 14th inning the game was finally decided on a sac fly. Rajai Davis hit a one out single and stole second and third to allow John McDonald to hit him in on the sac fly. M's fall again by the score of 6 - 5 in 14 innings.
I really like the fact that the players are starting to take control of their own demise. The team meeting, for whatever reason really seemed to pump up the team and get their bats going. Well, for two innings anyway. They went the following 12 innings without scoring again. In fact, we didn't get a man passed second base except in the 8th inning when Franklin Gutierrez advanced on a double play ball after starting the inning with two on and no out. Figgins completed that terrible inning by getting picked off at first base after getting walked.
The 11th inning was just as terrible. Carp led off the inning with a double and was also picked off and ruined any chance that the M's had to take the lead in extra innings. So, not only did the M's not score in the last 12 innings of the game, they played horrible baseball.
Maybe they need to start having player only meetings every two innings. Just a thought.