Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Prince Signs With Detroit!! Mariners Go Back To The Sandlot.

Well, the saga is finally over! Mariner fans, although they are not celebrating and dancing in the streets, watching Prince Fielder dawn a M's uniform, they should be super ecstatic that the Prince did not sign with the Texas Rangers.

Word came out today that Prince Fielder signed with the Detroit Tigers. Familiar territory for the slugger, considering his dad played there too. Kind of a nice story line. Surprised? Considering that the Tigers were never even in the list of suitors until the signing was announced. The Mariners were not even listed as a possibility in the last couple of weeks and all signs point to the fact that the Mariners weren't a possibility in Fielders mind. The Mariners are not winners, Prince wanted to win.

Sad, sad, sad. It's not easy for fans to hear this, but that's part of the process of rebuilding. Now that the hope for Fielder has died, the M's return to the sandlot. This year will once again be a year of evaluating and figuring out who is going to step up and start hitting the ball like a Major League ballplayer. Now, we add to the list a long line of potential starting pitchers such as James Paxton, Danny Hultzen, Hector Noesi and Forrest Snow as Jack Z pointed out on the Hot Stove League show on 710 ESPN last night. We also now have the opportunity to look at Jesus Montero and see what he can add to our lineup. We get to see if he can amp up others around him such as Franklin Gutierrez, Mike Carp and Justin Smoak. It's going to be another year of tests, struggles, frustration and youth.

In my opinion, it's baseball at it's best. Young kids getting their chance in the big leagues, scratching, fighting and clawing their way into the lineup and giving 110 percent of every second of the game. It's a great sight to see, but the numbers on the scoreboard have to change this year. Last year it was a great ride through June as the Mariners contended through a core of starting pitching that was as strong as ever, but as fatigue set in, the M's dropped off the face of the earth. There was absolutely no run production. That's been the focal point of the off-season and the number one reason that we traded away Michael Pineda to get Jesus Montero, because he's got a great bat and can smash at the plate.

What else could be on the list for the Mariners? Do they add a free agent to be a filler for a year like they tried with Jack Cust last year? Or, do they keep sending the youth out there this year in hopes that it all comes together this year with the addition of Montero and a stronger, healthier lineup. My vote is for the sandlot baseball again. Let's stick with our youth and hope for the best. Our lineup is starting to resemble the Rangers lineup a few years back. So, maybe we're a few years off from winning the whole thing, but look at the bright side.....

We have $23.7 million dollars per year to spend more each year now that we didn't land Prince Fielder. Something to think about.


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