SEATTLE — Scott Service sat at home at T-Mobile Park Wednesday morning excited to turn the page from the Mariners’ most brutal loss of the 2023 season. In trademark style after a grueling defeat, especially before today’s game, the Seattle coach was friendly, suave, and even snarled with some humor. light.
He joked to me about the other day, “Hey, these college games are in the College World Series and they have offensive lead time.” “Last night, I just wanted to call a time-out,” Service said with a laugh. “You don’t do that in a big league game. But like, just take a breath and go outside and have fun again. It’s a great day to play.”
Hours later, the tone changed and the metaphor sounded very real — but on a larger scale. After losing 4-1 to the Nationals, which led to consecutive losses to the last-place team at home, it’s hard not to draw parallels between the Mariners needing a time-out in this entire season of constant struggles.
“We need to turn it around,” Servier said after the game. “What’s going to turn it around? That’s the question, right? That’s the magic question. How do you get it back in the right direction? And it really comes along, does your job, races your tail and finds a way.”
The notable moments from another disappointing defeat:
“It never really got any traction,” said catcher Tom Murphy, who went 3-for-3 against Corbin, while the rest of the team went 2-for-23 against him. “We’re just as frustrated as everyone. I made the comment earlier where it seems like every day you get into the park, it feels like do-or-die – it really happens at this point in the season, and it’s a tough way to play.”
The Mariners fell to three games under . 500 (38-41) for the first time since May 2 — the date they started 51 games where they were either within three games under . 500 or more. This extended run prompted the club’s performance to be described as “stagnant” after a loss on Tuesday, when they had a chance to get out in the tenth inning with the bases loaded and no outs.
Raleigh had the day off scheduled on Thursday with it being a day game after a night game and he’d better hit left, but pinch hit in the ninth and hit.
Left-handed hitter Jared Kilinick and designated hitter Mike Ford had also scheduled days off against spin specialist Corbin, but their replacements — Dylan Moore and AJ Pollock, respectively — were unharmed. Moore is 1-for-20 since being fired from the IL for 10 days on June 6, and Pollock has snapped 0.15/.215/.291 (.506 OPS) this season. Wednesday was Bullock’s first start since June 12th.
“It’s hard to do, just counting on winning one-ball games, low-scoring games,” Murphy said. “This is a really difficult way to live. It is. So it will take a collective team effort, and everyone in this room is able to do that.”
The Mariners would enjoy a day out—maybe a long time of sorts—and perhaps enjoy a sun-filled afternoon as idyllic in the Pacific Northwest as the environment in which they played. Because the Major League Soccer’s flagship ray arrives on Friday.