The Seattle Mariners. For fans of the Oakland Athletics, just saying those words makes you uneasy. When they’re great, they beat us and when they can’t beat anyone in baseball, they beat us. Like Kryptonite to Superman, the Seattle Mariners seem to always be able to bring us down.
Since 2000, the Seattle Mariners have posted a .477 winning percentage over the A’s which doesn’t seem like much until you look at each season and see a couple of .700+ years mixed in. It is the 70% years that stick in A’s fans’ memories, as they should, because it could easily repeat itself in 2015.
Am I saying that the A’s are going to roll over and take a beating from the Seattle Mariners this year? Of course I’m not, how could you even suggest such a terrible thing? What I’m suggesting is that those guys up north may have what it takes to put a beatdown on the entire division. My partner in crime here, Jason, even believes they’ll take the division and for a team approaching 40 years without a World Series appearance, despite having three division titles, the time is right for them to go all in for 2015.
How are they going to do it? An offense that includes 20+ home run hitters Kyle Seager, Mike Zunino, Robinson Cano, and Nelson Cruz. That is an intimidating quartet who combined for 101 long balls in 2014 and and the team has several guys, like newly acquired Seth Smith, who are good for 10-15 home runs to add to that. In 2014, the Oakland A’s, who were known for their home run potential, only got 83 from their top four guys. This is a lineup not to be messed with and they will make a pitchers pay for his mistakes.
More from White Cleat Beat
- Oakland A’s add needed bullpen piece in Trevor May
- Garrett Acton could become key piece in Oakland A’s bullpen
- The stark difference between Oakland A’s, San Francisco Giants
- Jace Peterson – the Oakland A’s new super utility option
- Oakland A’s sign intriguing catcher Yohen Pozo
Then there’s the little matter of their pitching staff which includes “King” Felix Hernandez who went 5-1 against the A’s in 2014 and held them to a .222 batting average and Fernando Rodney who dares us to hate him every time he takes the mound with his crooked hat and his arrows to the sky. All in all, they held a 3.03 ERA against the A’s last year, with a 2.12 SO/BB ratio. As good as the A’s pitching staff is, these guys aren’t messing around either.
Ultimately, the two teams may end up being about equal in 2015 but if history is any indication, equal may be a slight edge to the Seattle Mariners and they are in a good position to teach us all a thing or two about aggressive offensive playing. Will they have a repeat of 2001 when they won 116 games? Absolutely not. With as good as the division is this year, I’ll be surprised if any of the AL West teams break 90 wins because they’ll all be losing to each other throughout the year but the Seattle Mariners could, and probably should, end up on the winning side of divisional play across the board in 2015.
And for that, we hate them.