The Mariners won a road series at Minnesota over the weekend, taking two out of three from the Twins, but fell a half-game farther back in the American League wild card chase.
Baltimore was the big winner over the weekend, sweeping an interleague series from the Arizona Diamondbacks and taking command of the No. 2 wild card spot. Toronto holds the top spot.
Seattle is 2.5 games behind Baltimore, and the Mariners also need to pass Detroit which is a game closer to the O’s. The final week of the season is upon us.
A do-or-almost-die three-game series at Houston starts tonight. Like the M’s, the Astros are also running short on time and they need to start reeling off wins to have a chance.
Both Detroit (vs. Cleveland) and Baltimore (at Toronto) start tough series tonight. For the remainder of the schedules, scroll down to Friday’s post.
Baseball woke up to shocking and sad news on Sunday morning: Miami Marlins ace Jose Fernandez had died in a boating accident.
This was terrible news. Just 24-years-old, Fernandez was one of the best pitchers in baseball. He played with visible joy, and was also one of the most talented players in the game.
The tragedy affects everyone in the game. His family, friends and teammates feel the biggest loss. The Marlins lost their franchise player – a Cuban immigrant who they expected to have at the top of their rotation for years to come.
We never saw Fernandez at Cheney Stadium – or in the PCL, for that matter. He made the incredible jump from Class-A to the majors in the spring of 2013, and proved he belonged right away. When he was recovering from ‘Tommy John’ surgery in 2015, he did all five of his rehabilitation starts at lower levels of the minors.
A pair of Tacoma Rainiers players from 2016 previously played with Fernandez.
- The Mariners won two of the three games in Minnesota to stay in the wild card chase. Nelson Cruz homered twice and hot-hitting Jesus Sucre also went deep in a 4-3 win on Sunday. The M’s bats went quiet in a 3-2 loss to the Twins on Saturday. In Friday’s series opener, James Paxton dominated in a 10-1 win.
- Mariners players reacted to the death of Jose Fernandez.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook from Sunday includes an addition to the team’s contingent in the Arizona Fall League. In his Saturday notebook, Dutton discusses the recent breakout by Paxton.
- Ryan Divish writes that the Mariners are going to look to upgrade the shortstop position this winter.
- I’ve been waiting for this: John McGrath’s ode to Vin Scully.
- McGrath also has his MLB Power Rankings.
- Larry Stone has a column on the Steve Clevenger suspension.
Check back later this week for a closer look at a Rainiers player who will go down as one of Tacoma’s all-time greats. Coming Wednesday or Thursday.