I wanted to take a macro look at the season because the blow by blow description has been rehashed so much. Taking a deep dive into team stats, there a few things that stand out.
Yea, the M’s finished eight in baseball this year with a .254 batting average. If the goal was to get hits, this is a playoff team. Unfortunately, getting hits isn’t the end game, its scoring runs, and Seattle finished 21st with 677 runs.
Early in the season, Seattle had some fortunate breaks, but the numbers have a funny way of working out. For example, the Mariners only got on base at a .314 clip (18th), and their slugging wasn’t much better at .408, which was 15th.
Seattle didn’t get on base enough and didn’t have the extra base power to drive in runs. Their 464 extra base hits were 22nd. My dismay has to do with the fact that they couldn’t or wouldn’t maximize their opportunities. The M’s were mid-pack in sacrifices, sacrifice flies, and stolen bases. Any or all of the above could have been used to move or drive in runs.
Somewhere along the line, no one realized that Seattle didn’t have the power bats to play long ball. Which means they missed the opportunity to play small ball. Stealing a base, bunting a runner over, or hitting a fly ball to bring a runner in from third are all things manager Scott Servais could have used to create runs.
How many times did fans scream at the screen for Kyle Seager to go opposite field against the shift or even drop a bunt toward third base? It was obvious in May that Seager had lost the strike zone.
When a star player is hitting around .220, by God, try and get on base once in a while. At the very least, move the runner instead of trying to blow the defense away like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz with the wind speed coming from a swing and miss.
Seager is the embodiment of the Mariners offensive issues.