Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. In this installment Aaron writes about the sterling relief performance by Blake Beavan last night vs. the Yankees.
If Blake Beavan had started Thursday night’s game against the Yankees — instead of appearing in long relief as he did — it would have been by far his best start of 2013. Beavan was called up prior to the game from Triple-A Tacoma to be the Mariners “long man” out of the bullpen and, wouldn’t you know it, was needed immediately.
“In Tacoma, I got back to the pitcher that I was when I was having success,” Beavan told me prior to the game from the Mariners clubhouse. “I was attacking hitters, using my fastball, and getting ahead.”
Beavan certainly pitched with a nice pace Thursday night against the Yankees, allowing just one hit over six and two-thirds scoreless innings. He joined John Montague (1977) as the only other Mariner reliever to face the minimum 20 batters over over six and two-thirds frames. He also became the first reliever since Jake Westbrook (Indians) on July 19, 2004 vs. Detroit to face the minimum amount of batters in a relief outing of at least six and two-thirds innings (7.0 IP, 21 batters faced).
Beavan recorded half of his outs on ground balls, which is a good sign that he’s back on track.
“When I’m on, I’m getting a lot of outs with my sinker. Everything works off my two-seam fastball.”
One thing I’ll be interested to talk to Blake about later today is how frequently he started a batter off with a first pitch breaking ball. He throws a nice slider and works in a 12-6 curveball, but it was odd to me that he didn’t start more batters off with a fastball seeing how he got away from his fastball prior to being sent down. Now, all that said, what he did against the Yankees was obviously effective, but it was still a little surprising.
Beavan is a quality guy to have in the clubhouse and looked awfully sharp Thursday night. Hopefully this is a sign of more good things to come.
Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. In this installment Aaron talks to rookie catcher Jesus Sucre about making his Major League debut, with his good friend Elvis Andrus in the opposing dugout.
There was a moment prior to Friday night’s game so brief, it was easy to miss. Before first pitch, Rangers leadoff hitter Elvis Andrus stepped inside the batters box and put his arm around Mariners catcher Jesus Sucre.
Andrus, a two-time American League All-Star, is from Maracay, Venezuela. Sucre, making his Major League debut, is a native Cumana, Venezuela.
Although the two grew up six and a half hours apart, baseball brought them together long before Friday night.
“Elivis is one of my best friends from back home in Venezuela,” Sucre said after the game. “He came up to me and made me feel good by telling me ‘have a good game, good luck, I’m glad you’re here.’”
Jesus and Elvis became good friends by once sharing the same clubhouse — in little league. They both played shortstop for the same team growing up and are now reunited on baseball’s biggest stage.
So who was the the better shortstop as a kid?
“Him, definitely him,” Sucre said with a smile. “He always made those plays he makes now in the Big Leagues.”
Fast forward nearly 20 years and, as Andrus was about to see the first pitch of the game, he had one final comment to Sucre.
“We were talking about my mom [who still lives in Venezuela],” explained Sucre. ”Elvis said, ‘Hey, you’ve got to say hi to your mom for me.’”
A mom who has seen her son — and his good friend — come a long way since little league.
Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. In this installment Aaron talks to starting pitcher Brandon Maurer about returning to Southern California for the first time as a Major League pitcher and about pitching in front of his family tonight at Angel Stadium.
Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. In this installment Aaron talks to Kyle Seager about facing Yankees closer (and future Hall of Famer) Mariano Rivera.
Tuesday night in the Bronx, Mariano Rivera earned his 16th save of the season — and the 624th of his legendary career.
His very first save came way back on May 17, 1996 versus the California Angels. Fast forward to September 13, 2011 and that’s where Kyle Seager come in.
“I’m on the highlight reel,” Seager said with a sigh. “I struck out for his 600th career save.”
Monday night Rivera got the best of the Mariners third baseman once again, as Seager flew out to center field to begin the ninth inning. Of course, Rivera gets nearly everyone out and he does it with virtually only one pitch: the cutter.
“You know it’s coming and you really almost have to reverse your mindset at the plate,” Seager said from his locker.
“If, out of his hand, the pitch looks like a strike, it’ll probably come in and jam you, as a left-handed hitter. You really need to jump on the pitches that look like they’ll be outside of the zone. Those are almost the only ones you can hit.”
Rivera is 16-for-16 in save opportunities this year, the second-longest save streak to start a season in his career (2008: 28 consecutive saves). No matter their approach, opposing batters have almost never been able to figure out what has been nothing more than a four-seam fastball with some natural cut.
Throughout the season, Mariners broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith will provide content on From the Corner of Edgar & Dave, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the Mariners players and organization. Here is his first installment for the 2013 season talking about minor league prospect Stefen Romero moving to the outfield.
After spending virtually all of his career at second base, Stefen Romero is now making the switch to left field. With the Mariners surplus of infielders at both the Major League and Minor League levels, the decision to move Romero to the outfield seems like a wise way to get his bat to Seattle sooner.
The Mariners reigning Minor League Player of the Year is off to a nice start to the season. Romero is hitting a combined .288 with 1 home run and 8 RBI between Single-A High Desert and Triple-A Tacoma, following an oblique injury in Spring Training. During his breakout 2012 campaign, Romero hit .352 with 23 homers and 101 RBI in 116 games between High Desert and Double-A Jackson.
“Stefen is very receptive and coachable,” said new new Minor League outfield and baserunning coordinator, Brant Brown. “We’re working on not doing too much and allowing the play and his abilities to dictate what occurs.”
Brown, a former Major League outfielder with the Cubs, Pirates, and Marlins, has been in Tacoma recently working with Romero as he transitions to the outfield.
“Things are progressing well,” Brown went on to say. “I’m talking him through the basics of playing the outfield. How to set up, reads, angles to the ball, and ball security.”
I spent two years with “Brownie” in Frisco, Texas when he served as the hitting coach for the Texas Rangers Double-A affiliate. In addition to being a Major League veteran and an all-around great guy, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen another coach actually teach the game of baseball with more precision and clearer communication than Brownie.
Romero actually played 17 games in the outfield for Single-A Clinton in 2011 (his first professional season). A lifetime .316 hitter in the minors, and someone Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik once told me “can flat out hit,” Romero’s bat promises to make an impact in Seattle whenever it arrives.