Larry Stone Thinks Smoak Gets The Job In SpringSeptember 30th, 2012 by terrybenish
Or deserves, or has earned it…
Let’s look at his last three major league seasons, along with his September performance with OPS:
2010 For the year .694 and September .975
2011 For the year .719 and September .793
2012 For the year .645 and September 1.063
The full year is terrible the third worst in the American League ahead of only Jemile Weeks, Yuniel Escobar and our own Dustin Ackley with 500 plate appearances. I think it is doubtful that either of Ackley or Smoak become good. Ackley gets the benefit of another 500 plate appearances, Smoak should not.
There is not any there, there.
Yesterday Stone in a subsequent piece says, “Here’s the No.
1 challenge for Jack Zduriencik this offseason: Make the Mariners
relevant again. They need to send out a team that compels people to
care — not just the hard-core zealots who would care if they lost
120, but the casual fans who checked out a long time ago. The hard
truth is that the Mariners have once again lost this town to the
Then he notes that attendance at the Mariner games had declined by half and makes the following statement, “To execute a 50 percent attendance drop in a decade — and heading ever downward — takes some really special alienation. The Mariners have obliged with seven last-place finishes in nine years, and 11 years and counting without a postseason appearance in baseball’s only four-team division (until next year, when the Houston Astros arrive).
All this so far has been the setup, he puts some frosting on that by saying he’s bored with watching guys go through their development stuff, up and down, but they could the mariners that is, and here he’s winding up and going to throw the high cheese for the finish line…He says, they should make the right moves.
It was really… two columns for that? I mean want to have something that burns my throat and warms my innards after that…if you think it’s bad about watching a team develop, what about reading bad and terrible coverage of the Mariners for four and a half months and then your paper stops covering the team? Then you deliver that, well, That REALLY SUCKS!!!
But I digress.
Despite what Dave Cameron will write there are not any good free agents to pick up, or hardly any. If they don’t draft and develop several players to bat 3,4 or 5 that are great hitters, no great free agent is going to come here, ever. EVER, EVER, EVER!!! They never have.
The relevant exasperation, if you look at the last two years, from a quality control perspective is to say, “So how did the Yankee deal for Pineda turn out? For the Mariners that is. Or, and how did the Tiger trade workout, Fister for Wells, you Fister the guy that was great in the playoffs last year and just struck out nine guys in a row? Well, shoot the manager treats Wells as if he’s serial dog crap, sort of like Ground Hog day, where Wedge steps in something and it’s Wells and he hates him and plays crappy, really crappy players instead. Or we get Eric Thames for Steve Delabar. Thames can’t play, has some power, but does not get on base and is a terrible outfielder. Bad trade. Fister deal is terrible, the Pineda deal looks one sided now, but big Jesus might be great in a year or so.
The whole make a few moves is like Chuck and Howard are doing the Tom Sawyer paint the fence thing you fools, through a surrogate in Larry Stone.
It is possible I suppose that they would make a move, conceptually, but they care not about winning baseball and the whole zen thing to that is only desperate players would come here, the agents stuck to Scott Boras’s shoe.
The only great players this franchise has had have been drafted or signed as a kid. Ichiro qualifies as pretty good, but there was not demand for him elsewhere.
Here is what’s wrong now with the Mariners development thing. They are blind to what their own eyes tell them. Smoak and Ackley, I can’t get beyond that they have played very bad and they are blind to it.
That works on several levels. Whatever daily work they do, it is not being led by someone that can help them. Bad plate appearances pile up, with no adjustments.
I’m convinced that the pitching side of dev at the major league club works. Defense especially infield defense is very good. Hitting thing is inadequate, no adjustments.
Any process that concludes with Miguel Olivo playing a lot is hugely flawed.
If next springs formula is Smoak, Ackley, Olivo, Peguero, Gutierrez then I will be lamenting future failure.