Mariners Analysis

Monday, April 19, 2004

Mariners start Oakland series tonight
While it was nice to see Seattle beat Texas twice over the weekend, and provide a glimmer of hope, the series really illustrated what we all know-
This team relies entirely on pitching to win games.

With the possible exception of Oakland, I can't think of another AL team that depends as much on its starting pitching to win games. When Moyer and Pinero pitch well, as they did this weekend, they win. When they pitch poorly, as they both did their first two starts, the M's lose. We can talk defense, speed and power all we want, but it all comes down to pitching for the Mariners.

The optimist looks at the weekend and says the M's are starting to get clutch hits, and the pitching is coming around. The half-empty crowd says the M's scored a handful of runs against one of the worst pitching staffs in baseball, and expect to see empty sees grow at Safeco.

The series starting tonight against Oakland will tell us a lot about these M's. It will tell us if Freddy is able to bounce back from a bad start and continue to impress in a contract year. It will tell us if Franklin is continuing to prove he is one of the best #4 starters in baseball.

But it won't tell us the M's need good pitching to win- because we already knew that.