Zeus Smites '27 Yanks - M's Take Series
Perhaps the Astros signed a ball for posterity



Sorry.  Didn't have time to see the game.  Have to go off the video, the Brooks report, and the Think Tank Library of Infinite Wisdom.  Remember Albert Brooks and Rip Torn in Defending Your Life?  "You read NUMBERS?!"  "Yes Sir."  Thusly:

Brooks Baseball sez

√ HMMMmmmmmm twice in a row, zero changeups.  Three games ago, the change was a nice weapon.  Inference: Zeus' touch-and-feel has left him three shudder-inducing primary weapons.

√ HHHMMmmmm 77% fastball strikes.  63% foshballs, 72% yakkers.  Must have been filling it up.  The defining characteristic of a Zeus outing, 0-1, 1-1, 1-2, hide the wimmen and children

√ Few (five, LOL) fastball whiffs, but crazy Knuckle Curve results.  Ergo: Great lineups are attempting the Randy Johnson strat-er-gy:  get a fastball in a certain spot, tip your cap on the rest.  Zeus is happy to provide "the rest."

Or that's what Brooks said.  As it happened, the video could not have been more consistent with this take:



Pitch 1 = Fosh used as a splitfinger, garbage swing by RH

Pitch 2 = Hard yakker used as above (see the third checkmark comment in previous section; they want the fastball too much)

Pitch 3 = Fosh low-away (whooo doggie gonna hafta watch this tape)

Pitch 4 = Fosh paints the knees for called K -- don't forget to enjoy the batter watching his own death with extra attention

Pitch 5 = Yakker on the black

Pitch 6 = Fosh used as splitter

Pitch 7 = Back-foot yakker, Unit style

I believe this lad is getting the hang of baseball.  Don't get yourself into a play-in game against him, you know what I'm saying?


The Astros are sporting a 135 team OPS+, as compared to the 1927 Yankees' team 127 OPS+.  Except, the Astros are silly right handed, no less.  When Zeus commands his offspeed stuff around the edges, it Will. Not. Matter. if it's the NL All-Star team in the box.



G linked us up to Jeff Sullivan's interesting analysis of Gray.  Here's the Exec Sum of Sully's grok, not mine.  "In 2014-15 Gray averaged 14-8, 2.95 using two wicked pitches, slider and curve, to set up his whole game a la John Lackey.  This year Gray's offspeed is not wicked.  His K's and peripherals are back but his game isn't.  Tread with care."

The Mainframe has not seen Gray pitch much, so can only offer a couple of suggestions.  SUGGESTIONS.

√ I notice he DOES have a new 4th pitch, a changeup, racking +2.00 on the value scale.  Pitchers evolve and their touch-and-feel evolves.  :: shrug ::

√ The times I've seen Gray, he's got Mike Mussina savvy and presence on the mound, working the zone like a maestro.  Excellent rhythm and attack.

√ No guarantees.

My default position on Gray would be, here is a pitcher who has grokked dominance.  Unless his stuff or control evaporates he's going to be a Top of Rotation (TM) guy.  Don't know that it has.

Your turn :- )



Sez here that Dipoto will leave no stone unturned.  Mariners' life is really good now, win or lose.  Used to be, back in the days of "we'll offer a competitive club and a nice night at the ballpark," we had no idea whether the suits would try as hard as the players did.  Used to be, we would watch through July 31, and THEN form an opinion as to whether the suits were invested in the pennant race.  Nowadays we don't wait for July 31.  If Jerry Dipoto comes away with nothing whatsoever, we already know that he did whatever could be done.

When Jerry Dipoto asks you, as a fan, to come to the park, he can look you in the eye while doing it.


Dr D




The Mariners outplayed the Astros in every facet: power, fielding, baserunning. In game one, we took the best in pitching they could throw our way - McCullers, Devinski, Giles - and we swatted them like bugs. This team had to have gained a big swill of confidence going into the Yankee series. We went from thinking we can win to knowing we can win. Take two of three this weekend and we will go from thinking we will win to knowing so.

Segura: can't say enough about his ice cold will to deny the Astros victory in game one. That was a real defining moment for me. Three tough plays in a row, no room for error or good enough in two of them, yet played to perfection. He held the tie against almost impossible odds. Then, seizing the momentum of the game and the upper hand in the series and putting a bit of doubt into the Astros' heads by following it up with two bombs against Giles and a statement shut down by our closer.

The Astros are loaded, and that kid Martes was dominant after we chased Morton. Correa was lost but Marwin looked like an upgrade at short. But we just flat out beat them, out willed them, really, and got our mojo back.


From thence cometh chemistry.  No overstating the psychological impact of a sequence like that.

It was the baseball version of Dwayne Wade running around the court stealing passes until his team was back in front ...


This is exactly what was needed to infuse life into the team, the fans, the Suits....

This homestead should be fun; too bad I'll be in the mountains away from technology for the weekend.


Not exactly Zach Britton level 'here come da boom' but Phelps is a valuable piece...a rubber arm you can really soak innings with.


Don't know who they are yet...this isn't the type of asset I'd want to give anything too close to the big leagues in terms of prospects for...so...let's see who it is. But Phelps will definitely help the Mariner bullpen find some stability and take the pressure off of badly-overused options like Vincent and Pazos.

Supposedly, one of the minor leaguers is a center fielder and the other three are pitchers.

Dang...FOUR players for Phelps?


I'd much rather give up a dozen tweeners than 2 blue-chippers. I don't hate this at all, especially considering the biggest chip, Hernandez, is not only 4 years away, but coming from our greatest position of strength in the system.

Now, for the starter!


Brayan Hernandez - like you said, high-risk CFer several years away.  Problem is, if he shows out he can get back a lot more.  It's selling low on his value now rather than waiting a few more months.

Brandon Miller - one of the precious few starters the Ms had in the system prior to this draft who might have turned into anything. His velo isn't anything to write home about but he's got the frame and the pitches to be a sturdy starter, or get moved to the pen to get his fastball to play up.

Lucas Schiraldi - dreams of being a middle-reliever in another 3 years.

Pablo Lopez - a starter now but around the zone too much - I expect a move to the pen for him too.


So yeah, Dipoto is still trying to get the low-minors talent moved to the current squad.  I don't think Jerry is maximizing his prospects, and I don't think he cares.  He wants what he wants and he's willing to pay for it.  Whether that Gillicks the system by the time he's gone is a different question, but right now he's basically picking His Guys out of the minors and trading the rest.  That doesn't always work - Luis Gohara is up to AA now as a better pitcher than any still in the Ms system save maybe one, and the Ms got a broken pitcher in return who has thrown zero innings this year for us.

And again, Dipoto doesn't really care.  It's now or never for this group, so he's moving pieces up to try to make Now happen, regardless of getting "full value."  Gohara is a Paxton-level arm that Seattle could miss desperately in 2 years, just as Brayan Hernandez has a chance to be a multi-WAR CFer in 2021.  Jerry's not here in 2021 if this all doesn't work now, so plundering Seattle's lower talent makes sense for him.

I just hope it makes more sense for the team in hindsight than Bavasi's deals did.  Dipoto's way to restock is via trade, not by internal growth.  As long as the trades keep providing Seguras and Hanigers and Gamels, and he keeps the Moores and Lewises to be able to fill out the rest of the roster with at least some system promotions, then burning down the lower minors every 6 months seems like a valid option - for a while.


Phelps is a patch who's had one brilliant year and then a good one this time around.  He's here for this year and next. How Seattle deploys him will matter, but I'm curious to see his usage here.  Strengthening the pen is important, but Seattle is still looking for a real starter. If Dipoto is throwing four players at a reliever I have no idea how much it would take to get an actual starter in here.

We still have the chance to find out, I guess.

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