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Stottlemyre Gets the Boot Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Posted by mrgenre in Mariners.
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Well, it’s semi-official.  It hasn’t actually been announced by Zduriencik yet, but it’s moved beyond blog rumors to ESPN.com and the official MLB web site: Stottlemyre’s out.

That’s right.  Despite the Mariners’ impressive performance last year, the “legend” has been cut loose.  Maybe all that talk years ago that Mel had inherited some of the best players in baseball and that was the reason for his impressive 10 years with the Yankees is true after all.  I don’t know about other Mariner fans, but I’m certainly sad to see him go.  Let’s take a look at how our pitching fared under his tenure.

Just to focus on the major statistics, we finished 25th in ERA (4.73), an amazing 28th in Shutouts (4), 5th in hits (1544), 7th in runs (811), 5th in walks (626), 23rd in k’s (1016) and 27th in WHIP (1.51).  And I won’t even bring up the fact that not a single one of our starters won 10 games, because that’s as much a factor of our lousy hitting as it is our pitching.

What really bugged me this year was the fact that all spring Stottlemyre preached aggressive pitching and it never came to fruit.  For all you who sat and watched a few games this year, did you ever see a trouble situation that didn’t come as a direct result of pitching around a good hitter?  Did you see our pitchers go inside more often than they normally do?  Did they keep the ball down to take advantage of what is a pretty good infield defensively?  Yeah, not even Silva, the so-called groundball specialist, managed to do that under Mel’s tutelage.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I love the local love story.  A guy from Sammamish, a lake that one of my best friends lives on, coming home to the team that started his coaching career is a beautiful picture.  And maybe with another year under his belt, he could have turned things around.  Let’s hope he can return to his roving instructor roots, because I think we can all agree that the pitchers with the most success were the new ones, yes?  Much of the hope for next season is on the backs of names like Morrow, Rowland-Smith, Dickey and the like.  And we have Mel to thank for that.

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