Tanned, Rested, and Ready
M's don't want a piece of yer. They want the whole thing


The Tacoma News Tribune published its rotation preview today.  Previously this week, they'd done the OF, the infield, and the catchers.  On Feb. 16th, the Times had done the relievers, so unless we also need a cricket-transfer preview, that would seem to allow us a flyover.  Was there anything in these previews that was fresh to an SSI denizen?  We'll cull it for yer.  As y'know, we live to serve.



Quick:  picture an article written for Soccer Mom.  Got it?  Then you got the rotation preview.

There is nothing wrong with Soccer Mom.  Dr. D married a fine specimen of such.  Odds are, however, she's not going to info-tain Moe Dawg on baseball matters.  

True, Moe Dawg might wish to glance at the NRI's in the article ... if he plans to get out to Tacoma at all this season.  And maybe you forgot that Mike Montgomery is the one young SP who is out of options.

If you squint, there is an interesting opinion that between Paxton and Karns, tie goes to Paxton.  That's tough, because Karns is by definition DiPoto's boy.

Things To Watch ... :: waves them off :: ... actually Paxton's plant foot, Taijuan's second pitch, and what they're going to figure out on Montgomery.  Everything else is scripted, goin' in.



Beefy article by Divish. He releases the intel that Tony Zych was highly sought-after this past winter.  What a shocker.  Those back-channel grabs do, however, add to the M's subconscious inertia to put Zych first in line this March.

As y'know, Benoit-Furbush-Cishek are in.  Nuno, Hultzen, Rollins (Montgomery Paxton 6SP) fight for the LH role.  Zych, Cook, Ano, Scribner, De Fratus and Peralta form a 6-to-make-3 that will dynamically carousel throughout April and May.  The Thing To Watch, besides Hultzen, is merely how those last 6-7 righties shuffle into line.  But, the Opening Day roster won't mean much for them.



I was interested to hear that Nori Aoki has "consistent on-base skills."  Hmmmm... consistently .350, true.  So I guess Aoki has consistent on-base skills in the sense that Charlie Furbush has consistent fastball skills.  No, seriously, these days .350 is compared to a league average that has dropped to .320.  Albeit with Aoki's weenie ISO and pretty good speed.  The 100 OPS+ in a corner spot doesn't singe Dr. D's wagging tail, but ... it ain't Dustin Ackley In A Slump.  That's the point, right?


Not pictured:  a Corner OF Bat
Not pictured: a Corner OF Bat


The TNT opines that Seth Smith WILL collect 30 doubles and 12 homers with a decent batting average.  This resolves Dr. D's own question as to whether Smith is any threat to decline.  Good on yer, TNT.  ... Dr. D is kidding.  He assumes that Dutton's mood is a reflection of the M's ease and cheer about Smith.  The M's like Smith really really lots.  That's news for US.

Predicting 30 doubles and "a dozen" homers, that's kind of quirky  ... had you noticed that Smith had 31 doubles, 5 triples, and 12 homers exactly in both 2014 and 2015?  :- )  With the 50-70 walks, you could say that he Lengthens the Lineup.  Hey, you gotta have a 6 hitter.  Like Casey said, without one you'd have a lot of forfeits.

Dutton had a good point that somebody in the OF will get injured, perhaps getting out of his walker, so Boog is crouched at the airplane door to parachute in real early.



Have to say that the ideas in this post weren't exactly the Old Country Buffet to SSI fatties.  Not a lot here you hadn't yet grokked.

True, there was an interesting suggestion that if Marte bats .121 in March and Taylor bats .409, then Taylor could still win the job even before Opening Day.  Hm.  And Dutton insists that Montero has "a big advantage" over Dae-ho Lee because Montero is out of options.  To pick one question out of a grab bag on that one:  are you saying that Dae-ho Lee would go to Tacoma to start the year?



Says here (actually, says THERE) that the M's indeed fancy Iannetta's chances to bounce back with the bat.  Sounds good to us.  And they note that even if he didn't, an 80 OPS+ beats a 50 OPS+, even by today's liberal-arts understandings of math.

Clevenger, says here* has major issues on defense, making him exactly John Jaso.  We might pause and reflect on the difference this puts between Jack Z and DiPoto; Zduriencik would sooner do standup comedy than let a bat-first catcher anywhere near his roster.  Run prevention model, indeed ...



I guess we all have Spring Training totally figured out.  That's kind of a letdown.  But boy howdy, will we ever be ready when the Mariners ask our opinion.



Dr D



M's have a history of parking NPB Star Destroyers slightly beyond prime, namely Roberto Petagine.

And that was even after he parked a Francisco Rodriguez pitch into the RF stands.

He LITERALLY got 2 starts with the M's, and both were after MAY.

That was exactly 10 yahrens ago.

Let's see how far they've gone.


Both my favorite farmhands, Pizzano and Smith, get invites.  I'm loving it.

Prove me right guys!

I'm here to tell you that the Smith kid can play, btw. 



even guessing those who do and don't make it to Safeco...how much better will Tacoma be?


Yeah, that's what the sabes will always tell you.

But doesn't it matter if GMs and managers use it to finalize their 25 man rosters...and lineup construction...and bench roles...and bullpen composition? It certainly matters to the guys affected.

So, in that sense, it COULD be that Montero doesn't win the platoon gig based on March.  But that could be viewed as GM malpractice...setting him free for the lottery ticket that Lee's big swing can adjust to MLB pitching (so, yes, 90% chance Lee opens at Tacoma).  Could decide whether Marte hits second or ninth.  Will decide the 5th rotation spot. Could decide the second bullpen lefty (in my mind, Fry should be considered, but even if he's lights out, he's not going to leapfrog so many other contenders).

So, my bottom line is this: spring training 2015 was guessing how many guys had just 'figured it out'.  Spring training 2016 is how many guys can just keep doing what they've always done.


That's Bob Barker? As Happy said it (on cleaned up family TV) "The price is wrong, Bob."

I've been watching Bob Barker on TV all my life, since Truth or Consequences. So, kudos for hanging in there, guy. But as Bob told Happy, "I think you've had enough,"

Anyway, nothing to add of interest, except I loved the breezy, humorous way you filled me in on what Dutton thinks, Doc.

I've got SSI, a TV with ROOT sports, and SSI. And Twitter. I'm set.

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