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Recap: Mariners @ A’s ST Game 1

March 2, 2012

This year I am going to do things a little differently on days I recap. Last year I’d write it up as a sort of narrative and I’d give it a title and slap a photo up. This year I am going to treat the recaps a little bit more like the Live Blogging. More notes and thoughts, less narrative. If you want narrative you can go to the site, you can go to Yahoo! Sports or read the fine stories submitted each and everyday in the San Jose Mercury News by Joe Stiglich or San Francisco Chronicle by Susan Slusser. So let today be the beginning of this new format and if you all hate it, too bad because this is my blog. Just kidding, I love the feedback I get and if this doesn’t work out so well I am amenable to changing things but I found it tedious to do when I missed games and furthermore I also found it didn’t offer anything new to you the reader and judging by the general lack of response on those posts, you didn’t find it had much to offer either. So without any further waiting, the new format:

  • The A’s and M’s will face each other a billion times this year and open their respective spring training schedules before anyone else as the lone game today. Of course, the two clubs face each other and open the MLB season in Japan versus one another so it seems appropriate they’d get an early jump on the fake games that sort of matter.
  • Manager Bob Melvin had said that the spring opener would have the look of an opening day lineup. Interesting look as it is Jemile Weeks leading off followed by Cliff Pennington, Coco Crisp, Manny Ramirez, Seth Smith, Josh Reddick, Kurt Suzuki and Brandon Allen with Josh Donaldson getting the start at third and completing the lineup. Like Crisp in the three spot, I have complained incessantly about his OBP not being leadoff worthy, it is a shame that this seemingly will keep his speed at bay a little. Interesting to see Allen hitting as low as he is in this lineup. Few teams will have their first baseman, especially one who exhibits the power Allen has, hitting so low in the lineup, but for all the power he has he has yet to show he can hit. Wonder if Daric Barton is in this lineup how it changes things. Perhaps Pennington to the eight spot with Barton second?
  • A’s pitching was a little shaky today – surrendering five home runs. FIP – and I as well, believe that home runs are the responsibility of the pitcher. On a day with a 20 mph win going left to right perhaps that isn’t entirely true, but all the Mariners runs came via the home run with Michael Saunders, who is looking like he will be Seattle’s center fielder perhaps, taking starter Graham Godfrey deep in the second; Carlos Peguero taking Tommy Milone deep in the fourth; Luis Rodriguez getting one in the fifth off of Grant Balfour along with Jesus Montero who launched one (at least given the reaction on MLBNetworkRadio) off of him as well in the same frame; and finally Johermyn Chavez teed off off of Fautino De Los Santos in the eighth.
  • The Mariners didn’t put up a lineup that anyone should expect to see this year, so while M’s fans may have an idea of where Blake Beavan is, the A’s can’t say the same based on who they faced. Despite that Graham Godfrey pitched two innings and aside from the two-run home run, walked one, striking out four in his bid to be one of the three through five starters on this squad. I think he has an edge on this given his experience last year, but the outing today was mixed with the one pitch mistake costing him two runs.
  • Milone meanwhile featured his pinpoint control walking no one in his two innings while K’ing three. None of the pitchers that followed Milone walked anyone either with Joey Devine, Pedro Figueroa and most importantly Jordan Norberto for all his control problems getting through walk-free frames along with the earlier mentioned pitchers Balfour and De Los Santos.
  • The only Athletic to use the wind to their advantage on the offensive side of the ball was Eric Sogard who now leads the club with one home run this spring getting his shot off Steve Delabar. Sogard’s play will be pivotal, he is fighting for a backup infielder position but realistically is probably in the mix to fill the vacancy left by Scott Sizemore‘s injury at third as well. The lead horse in that race at present moment, Donaldson had a forgettable game going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and leaving three men stranded, while another competitor in Wes Timmons went 1-for-2 driving in two runs though he replaced Jemile Weeks and played second.
  • Reddick and Allen both went 2-for-2 with Allen adding a double to the mix. Reddick got the first A’s stolen base of the season however, swiping one off of Beaven and Montero who left the game early having taken a few baseballs to his catcher’s mask. Montero who has had many a complaint over his defense wasn’t tested much by A’s runners.
  • Overall commensurate with being the first game of the spring season the 6,316 fans at Phoenix Municipal Stadium were treated to glimpses of 54 different players: 26 Mariners and 28 A’s.
  • These games don’t matter but, for what it is worth Seattle won 8-5 on nine hits with two errors, while the A’s had 10 hits and one error charged to the young Weeks still getting his sea legs at second.
4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 3, 2012 2:55 am

    No surprises there, we knew that Sogard had the most power on the roster. Oh, wait, no.

    I like this format! Really gets to the important and more interesting points, I think.

    • March 3, 2012 3:04 am

      Great! I think I will keep it like this with recaps as I like it and I do ultimately have veto power! Not sure yet if I will do recaps on games I live blogged. I did not last year with the live blog serving as the recap of sorts as well.

  2. Hungary4A'sNews permalink
    March 3, 2012 7:30 pm

    We are NOT worthy!

    Those of us miles..oops kilometers …and time zones away…are Very Appreciative of your summaries! Man(n)y thanks (ok.. sorry for that joke).

    have to admit looking forward to hearing ken,vince, and ray…sounds of spring.

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