Mariners Analysis

Monday, May 09, 2005

O-ffense takes field in Bronx

I'm not sure what the odds in Vegas are tonight for Randy no-hitting the M's...

The M's offense has been so dismal these past few weeks that last nights 6 run output qualifies as an explosion. Of course these leaves few descriptions for the 16 runs the Astros put up.


Anyway, the M's offense has shown no improvement over last years pathetic display, and is of course largely why the M's are in last place yet again. While watching the M's approach at the plate, I have often wondered:

Should a pitcher even throw strikes to the M's hitters?

The M's seem to display some of the worst pitch selection I have seen in a major league team in some time. It it annoying to watch Ichiro swing at a pitch 10 inches out of the strike zone on a 3-1 count, but we are willing to cut him some slack given his overall production.

However, when someone like Beltre or Olivo (who both have looked terrible at the plate) is swinging at pitches WAY out of the strike zone on 1-0 and 2-1 counts, it is hardly suprising they are not getting on base. An opposing pitcher doesn't even need to throw strikes to these guys, just get it near the plate and they are guaranteed to hack at it. I swear these M's could screw up an intentional walk during an at-bat. They have NO PLATE DISCIPLINE as a team. Even if they make contact, these pitches lead to easy outs in the infield.

I've remarked this year at the absurdity of seeing Willie swinging away on a 3-0 pitch. I really believe some of the M's offensive problems are because guys are trying too hard to get the key hit, but I also believe this organization is not getting the message across on how to approach an at-bat.

Watching Boston over the weekend just further drives home how pathetic the M's are at plate discipline. While Boston hitters work the count, make pitchers throw strikes and pounce on mistakes, the M's are polar opposites. Pitchers get out of innings quickly, see mistakes over the plate get fouled back harmlessly, and in general watch their ERA's plummet.

There are only a few possible explanations for how bad this offense has performed.
- Bad luck. The M's hit a bad hitting streak, and it just happens to have happened at the beginning of the season to almost the entire team at the same time
- No Talent. These guys are just not major league hitters (collectively), for one reason or another
- Guys trying too hard. Just need to relax and it will come around.
- ??

What gives? How long will this club continue to generate no offense or fan enthusiasm?

No better time to get the offense going than against the Yankees.

Go M's!!