It is another prototypical season for Seattle. They struggle to put together consistent stretches of good play. They definitely have talent with Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma anchoring their pitching staff. They also have a decent offense that is built around Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz. Currently, they sit at 41-48, seven and half games behind the division lead, and seven behind the nearest wild card spot.
The Mariners have big name stars, but they do not have a solid team. For years, Felix Hernandez has turned in big time pitching performances, but has suffered loss after loss. This year has been no different as the Mariners pitching staff struggles to gain offensive support.
Meanwhile, Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz have provided a good offensive contribution in the lineup. However, they do not have any support and their work often goes to waste. Unlike the other teams in the division, the Mariners have remained fairly healthy through the season.
Seattle’s strengths are in individual players. When Felix Hernandez pitches, they win. When Robinson Cano has a big day at the plate, they win and so on…. As a team, they do not have any strengths.
Graphic via lesterslegends
The most glaring weakness in Seattle is their offense. It currently ranks 27th in runs scored at 312. Finding consistent offensive production from enough members of the lineup has been a decades-old problem for them.
Seattle’s pitching staff has also been a major reason for their struggles this year. Apart from Hernandez and Iwakuma, the pitching staff’s performance has been miserable. They currently have an ERA of 3.82, 17th in the league. Unfortunately, there is no sign that they will improve any time soon.
The Second Half
Seattle is in their usual freefall. Barring a total collapse by the other teams in the division and the playoff hunt, they will not contend for a playoff spot this year. They do not have injuries to blame for their performance this year. The front office will have a lot of work to do next offseason, but do not expect them sell this year at the trade deadline. They may buy a piece in preparation for next year, but they will not move one of their better trade chips.
With series against the Yankees, Detroit, and Toronto coming immediately after the All-Star break, it is pretty reasonable to say that Seattle’s season will probably take its turn for the worst here. However, this is still baseball and anything can happen.
Graphic via bleacherreport