And those 6 ain't counting Karns or Taijuan, much less Zach Lee or Vidal Nuno.
Q. Did Nate Karns learn anything from Mike Montgomery's graduation from "git right after em" bullpen remedial school?
A. Personally, I fancied that on July 15, Karns had tucked his fastball in off the outside corner, and that he brought his overhand curve up a few inches to stay inside the zone.
Could be just my imagination, as to whether he was taking more of the plate. But Karns threw 19 strikes and 5 balls (after you account for the three outrageous times he was ripped off by an ump who had difficulty tracking Karn's kurve). And he threw two perfect innings.
Q. Who are the Six right now?
A. Paxton - Iwakuma - Montgomery - Miley - LeBlanc - Felix. And DiPoto sells Taijuan Walker as a given, once his foot is healed. Therefore at least two SP's have to go. (?!)
The News Tribune sells the M's as giving Mike Montgomery a job ticket to run with. For the Mariners to announce six starters, along with the kind of commentary in the TNT article, is pretty suggestive of an attempt to showcase some SP's.
DiPoto yelled from the rooftops that the M's are buyers AND sellers, and always will be. If they have a target they've headfaked, it's corner OF and closer.
Q. Does SSI forsee a Mike Montgomery exit deal, or is he DiPoto's kind of pitcher?
A. SABRMatt had brought up the question of how similar Montgomery's value would be to Drew Pomeranz'. In this other TNT article,
"Look, the Mariners have a lot of pitchers that you’d like to have," said one veteran scout from a rival organization. "The question is what do they want in return, and what are you willing to give up?
"Right now, they still think they’re in it. And they are. But if that changes — if they fall back over the next two weeks — then a lot could change. We all know Jerry is a guy who likes to deal."
DiPoto made a fantastic call to keep Mike Montgomery in the org. But judging by how hard Montgomery had to fight to get his chance to start -- Monty was behind Wade LeBlanc on the M's depth chart, and that was when LeBlanc was in AAA for another team --
-- and the whole, "he finally got his chance to prove skeptics in the org wrong" thing ... well, Montgomery was never DiPoto's guy. You'd think if teams started pressing with offers 80% of Pomeranz, then DiPoto would cash Montgomery in.
Not saying that's what Dr. D would do.
Wouldn't rule it out at all, two or three teams believing that Mike Montgomery is ready to be a good starting pitcher, and bidding to match. After all, it took three players off the M's 25-man roster to land Nate Karns ...
The average fan might resist the comp to Pomeranz, but the average GM might not. ... that's just my $0.02.
Q. What was this thing about "they think they're in it"?
A. Which, literally translated from the Klingon, means "They don't want to give up some guys who helped them in the first half." Which Mariner player that is talking about, you tell me :- )
Obviously some teams would like to give the M's longer-term prospects for quality vet players. Pleasantly, DiPoto has waved that off.