Live Blogging: A’s @ Mariners Game 162
9:34PM PDT: Bailey K’s Mike Carp to end 2011. A’s win. Final pitch of the regular season for all of MLB. The Athletics-free postseason is all we have to wait for.
9:26PM PDT: Kelley strikes out the side which ends a phenomenal night by the M’s bullpen: seven innings, three hits, one walk and eleven K’s. Andrew Bailey will try and equal the zero’s the M’s pen put up on the board as he will be out for the save. He has had 21 shutdowns to just five meltdowns so odds are good he’ll close this out.
9:23PM PDT: The man who likely will be the last M’s pitcher of the night and 2011 season will be Shawn Kelley. Kelly has pitched 11 2/3 innings this season with zero earned runs allowed but a 2.60 FIP.
9:09PM PDT: Tom Wilhelmsen now in for the Mariners who are doing a typical last day of the season heavy bullpen outing but the pen has been good so far (5.0IP, 2H, 1BB and 8K).
8:55PM PDT: Nice play by Ichiro to save another big hit (though not a home run) off the bat of Jai Miller.
8:51PM PDT: Gio Gonzalez strikes out the side. He is looking good now after a shaky start and with that he hits the 200 inning mark and only has thrown 83 pitches in the ballgame. Is there a real need to keep him out there at this point? Let’s let some relievers get some final work see what they can do and Gio can go home with a great outing (1H, 3BB, 8K). The M’s are going to have a new pitcher out: Steve Delabar. Delabar is making his sixth MLB appearance. In his six innings he has 7.5 K/9, 6.0 BB/9 and 1.5 HR/9 adding to a 6.03 FIP despite a clean 3.00 ERA.
8:39PM PDT: Hideki Matsui pinch hits for Josh Willingham who looked like he may have tweaked something in his previous at bat. He’ll have a few months to get over it. I don’t know how I feel about Willingham. In many ways he inspired more faith in me than any of the other A’s hitters but you need to think that realistically that does not say very much. His 29 home runs were great, but if offering him a new contract means keeping him around until he is 35 or so that seems dangerous for someone who seems to consistently miss so much playing time. That said, the man replacing him is also destined to be a free agent, yet he seems now all but assured to be returning which is a clear cut terrible move. At least re-signing Willingham to a three-year deal is a debatable move.
8:35PM PDT: Ruffin strikes out the side. Filthy stuff.
8:26PM PDT: Gio strikes out two in the fourth which might keep him in a little longer, but he is still at a relatively high 61 pitches. M’s also will be inserting a new pitcher come the top of the fifth: Chance Ruffin who came to the M’s to complete the trade that sent Doug Fister to Detroit. Ruffin, the son of former pitcher Bruce Ruffin was a first-round draft pick in 2010. In his fourteen appearance long MLB career, he has been worth -0.4 WAR for the Mariners thus far as he like Vasquez is homer happy (2.3 HR/9) – how you do that at Safeco is beyond me.
8:01PM PDT: Third walk on the night for Gio, with Chris Gimenez on board via a single it makes it second and first with no one out. Control just isn’t there and at 41 pitches don’t see him reaching six innings at this pace either.
7:50PM PDT: Control for Gio is less than stellar so far. Two walks in the second but he gets out of the jam. Total so far is 35 pitches with just 20 strikes. Wonder if he will make it to six innings (the point at which he’d reach 200 innings) and likewise wonder does it even matter? Vasquez will not make it to six innings as he has already been replaced in what I imagine will be a game with a great deal of bullpen usage, by Josh Lueke. I assume we will see a parade of Mariners hurlers tonight – not sure that’ll be the case for Oakland because of the aforementioned mark Gio is chasing.
7:29PM PDT: I am starting to wonder if there is any pitch that Chris Carter can swing and make contact on. He has been immensely disappointing in his time in the green and gold getting worse with time too. Entering play today he already had a K% of 44.2% this year topping last year’s disappointing 26.9%. I worry that Carter is headcase, he certainly hasn’t shown to not be one. I hope he succeeds but he just looks lost.
7:05PM PDT: Here we are the end of the line. The A’s and M’s both are far from contention this year and will see each other in their next regular season games next March in Tokyo. This game resembles a Tacoma Rainiers – Sacramento River Cats game more than M’s-A’s as the A’s feature a roster behind Gio Gonzalez that is so unique it bears printing in full:
- Coco Crisp, CF
- Michael Taylor, LF
- Jemile Weeks, 2B
- Josh Willingham, DH
- Scott Sizemore, 3B
- Chris Carter, 1B
- Jai Miller, RF
- Landon Powell, C
- Adam Rosales, SS