Mariners Analysis

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

M's need to consider future in September

Last nights game featured a dramatic walk-off homer by Beltre, but I'm sure I'm not the only fan who thought about what it did to our chances of getting Steven Strasburg.

All fans who follow baseball have heard the name. He's probably not a franchise saving guy, and we all know the risks associated with young pitchers, but he has a chance to get fans excited in a way Ken Griffey version 2009 can never achieve.

So if you're the Mariners, you have a choice. Option One is to try to win every game and avoid the tag of 100 losses. It means little to most fans- but we know Howard and Chuck care more about this then any living, breathing person on the planet. Option Two is to tank games and hope to land Strasburg.

Is there something in between? Say play the kids, look towards the future and see what you have to build for next year?

Here's an example. Beltre is playing hurt. The team may consider trading him in the offseason. How about bringing Tui up and playing him at 3rd for an extended period in September. Accomplishes both goals of seeing what you have and possibly increasing your odds of landing Strasburg.

If you apply this strategy across the board in September, you'll actually increase the interest to fans like me who want to see the kids play while at the same time looking towards the future of the club. If you employ this strategy and actually win, well then that's the way the cards play out and you can't feel bad about it.

However, if the team plays veterans and tries to win every game in September, it will result in the worst outcome to everyone not named Chuck or Howard.