Monday, March 8, 2010

M's Ranked 7th In TSN Preseason Power Poll

What a difference an ace makes!  The Sporting News ranks the Seattle Mariners 7th in its preseason power poll.  The poll has the big 3 at the top.  Here is the top 10:
1. NYY
2. PHI
3. BOS
4. STL
5. COL
6. LAA
7. SEA
8. TB
9. MIN
10. CHC

There is no question the Mariners improved this offseason.  But 7th in all of baseball seems a little optimistic for such an offensively-challenged squad.  TSN projects that Jose Lopez will lead the Mariners in home runs with 22.  No other player is projected to top 18 (Bradley's projected for 18, Griffey & Guitierez 17).  Where will the run production come from?

Let's also not forget the rotation has more question marks than sure things after you get past Felix and Lee.  We are all expecting good, if not great, things out of Rowland-Smith this year.  But with 27 starts over the past two seasons we really can't bank on anything yet.  The 4th and 5th slots are dicey, relying on the ineffective (Snell) and injured (Bedard) to turn things around.  Snell was pretty effective in 2007.  This humorous blog post from Pittsburgh pretty much sums up the last couple of years for Snell.  I'm probably most excited about the return of Bedard.  A nice ace-in-the-hole for a team that should be in the thick of the divisional chase when he's ready to return in May or June.  If one of them steps up this thing could get very interesting.

With all of that said, it is fun to see the sports nation, or at least national writers, take notice of the Mariners.  Hopefully we have finally emerged from the Winter of Bavasi with only blue skies ahead of us.

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