How the Mariners Got Back to .500

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - MAY 10: Seattle Mariners Second base Robinson Cano (22) celebrates with Seattle Mariners Outfield Ben Gamel (16) after a home run in the third inning during the game between the Seattle Mariners and Philadelphia Phillies on May 10, 2017 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

How the Mariners Got Back to .500

Don’t look now, but the Seattle Mariners are on a four-game win streak. Not only that, but they are back to .500 and in 2nd place in the division. Over the last 10 games, they have gone 6-4, slowly creeping towards that elusive number. They finally got there on Wednesday.

Getting it Done with the Bats

They just got done sweeping aside the Philadelphia Phillies in a short, two-game away series. They scored 21 runs off 32 hits. That is some explosive offensive power right there. This also included coming back from two four-run deficits. That marked only the second time in franchise history that had happened. Just for good measure, they added 11 walks and only 12 strikeouts, showing faith in Jerry Dipoto and his philosophy of “Controlling the Zone”.

Ben Gamel came alive, going 6-9 with a home run, four RBI, and six runs scored. He also walked three times, showing that it wasn’t a mistake to trade for him in the offseason. Robinson Cano battled a stiff quad, but that didn’t slow him. He finished the series 6-8 with two homers, five RBI, and three runs scored.

Danny Valencia has been a big part of the Mariners march back to .500. Over his last 10 games, he has slashed .342/.375/.605. He seems to have found his power stroke again, with three home runs and 10 RBI. It was disappointing how much the career-.280 hitter stumbled out of the gate. During the first month of the season, it was no surprise the Mariners played so poorly. They had what seemed like black holes behind the plate and at first base, at least on the offensive side of things.

Troubles on the Mound

The negative to take away from this series is that the pitching gave up 15 runs, which on a normal day wouldn’t be a recipe for seeing a sweep by the visiting ballclub. Most of this was from their starting pitching. This team is going to be hurting for a little while with their injuries. They are hoping to get a few starters back by the next homestand, but nothing is certain. Until then, it is going to be fun watching who they send out to the mound.

The pitching in general this year for the Mariners has been bad, to say the least. However, in May, they have slowly begun to turn it around. They went from 14th in the AL with a team 4.71 ERA, to ninth in the AL, at 4.27 ERA. With four fifths of the starting rotation down, it will be up to the offense to carry them.

Moving Past .500

While the pitching hasn’t really materialized for a variety of reason, the offense has turned the corner after a dreadful 2-8 start. The Mariners need the offense to keep up this pace. They need to make sure they don’t squander any scoring opportunities. The young guys stepping in need as little pressure on them as possible. Seattle has a four- game series with the Toronto Blue Jays coming up, with Chase De Jong scheduled to make his third start of the year.

Here’s to a few more #Swelmets over the weekend.

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