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Monday, April 11, 2005

Madritsch to the D.L. 

Mariner starting pitcher Bobby Madritsch has gone on the D.L. with a strained left shoulder. Baseball Prospectus's Will Carroll is reporting that Madritsch will need season-ending shoulder surgery.

If Carroll is right, that's a big blow to the M's, who are likely to be fighting it out with the Rangers for third place in the A.L. West. While the Mariners have a reputation for having a strong, deep pitching staff, in reality, injuries and age have devastated the Mariner rotation. To start the season, they were looking at a rotation of Moyer, Pineiro, Madritsch, Meche, and probably the washed-up Aaron Sele. Pineiro is on the d.l. to start the season, though, and with Madritsch going down, that means that Sele is the #3 starter, with Ryan Franklin and Ron Villone taking the #4 and #5 spots. Moyer and Meche have warts on them, as well -- Moyer is 42 and coming off a terrible season, while Meche is coming off a bad season and has never recaptured the ability that he flashed in 1999 and 2000, before he hurt his shoulder.

With Travis Blackley done for the year with shoulder problems and Clint Nageotte also on the shelf, the Mariners' options in the minors are very few. Felix Hernandez is their best pitching prospect -- and arguably the best pitching prospect in the game -- but he's still just 19, much younger than you'd prefer for a pitcher being thrust into the starting rotation. They could turn to King Felix, but even as great as he looks to be, if Madritsch is gone for the year, that rotation is a mess.

3 comments
Comments:
FWIW - The other day I was listening to an Inland Empire 66'ers radio broadcast, the pre-game show. They were interviewing the Mariners minor league director - name escapes me. He mentioned King Felix. I heard a bit of frustration in his voice when he spoke about Felix - it seemed to me to be more attitude-based than talent-based. Like the kid's getting a big head and starting to cut corners. Just my impression from the Mariner farm guy's tone. It was a real 'needs to take care of business' type comment. May be worth watching his boxscores to see if he's backsliding.

Maybe I'm reaching ...
Shroo
 
3rd place? You gotta have faith!
 
The Mariners are the antithesis of the A's when it comes to pitching prospects and injuries.
 
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