If I were anyone else, I’d name Mitch Haniger Seattle’s Spring MVP and rave all about how he’s about to have a breakout year and hit 30 home runs and drive in 100, but the world loves to spite me, and if I did, he would probably quit baseball and join a monastery tomorrow. Nothing against monasteries, but it doesn’t go with my prediction and anticipation for how he’ll do this year.
Instead, I’ll act like this Spring never happened, until he starts to perform well, then I reserve the right to harp on his Spring and how we were all impressed. Thanks, I’m glad we’ve got this all squared away.
Overton Dominates, Miranda to Minors
Dillon Overton got the start for the M’s today, overpowering the Rangers over six innings. He struck out three and allowed only one run off a homer by Ryan Rua. Six innings is a long go for a bullpen guy, but it’s a nice thought that the M’s could have a long relief option in a left-hander going into the regular season.
Speaking of lefty relievers, Ariel Miranda was sent to minor league camp today, along with catcher Sebastian Valle. Miranda looked poised for a bullpen spot, but had struggled in this last few starts. Overton in particular has been much sharper in his appearances, particularly into today’s action. Overton finds himself amongst a few options to make the MLB roster as cuts will be made to trim the current 41 players down to the 25-man roster.
Outfielders Fuel the Mariners
With Canó and Cruz out with head colds, a virus which has caused some trouble in the Seattle clubhouse, the M’s find themselves in a similar situation like they found themselves in during the WBC; without their main power sources. I had questions myself about the Mariner outfielders going into Spring, and they’ve more than proven themselves. Haniger hit his ninth double of the Spring, Heredia recorded his eight, and Gamel drove in two with a double of his own. Haniger finds himself fifth amongst all major leaguers in batting average this Spring. Obviously, Spring Training stats don’t mean a whole lot, but he’s been more than impressive so far.
The position battle between Gamel and Heredia has narrowed with Gamel’s recent offensive surge. My vote is still with Heredia, and with major cuts coming this week we’ll see how it plays out.
Taylor Motter came through with that “sneaky power” of his with a monster home run onto the porch in left at Peoria Stadium. He got the start in left today and continues to prove his versatility. Also, that hair is so damn beautiful. He got a little breeze today on the field, and I know I wasn’t the only one who got distracted.
Drew Smyly gets the start as the M’s head to Goodyear to take on the Reds.