Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Praise the Lord, the Mariners are Finally Moving in the Fences

Today is a momentous day in the season of the Seattle Mariners. One of the few exciting pieces of news that has come out of this season, has got to be the news that the Mariners will be moving in the fences next year.

It was very thrilling and exciting when the Mariners were two games within .500 this year, but I was so out of my mind that I didn't foresee their downfall back to the regular 10-15 games under .500. Silly me, maybe I'll eventually learn. Anyways, this breaking news could possibly mean a record over .500 next year and is not only enticing for the current hitters, but is also enticing to all those to-be free agent hitters. I really think this decision by the Mariners front office could be the best one they have made in years. I really hope the team doesn't prove me wrong again and eventually kill my optimism, but they just might, who knows. There's three main reasons why I think this is an amazing decision. It will boost the production of our current offense, Safeco will look more favorable to free agent hitters and we already have the pitching in our system to be able to sustain the new dimensions of the fences.

B.J. Upton is a name the Mariners could possibly look at to improve their offense as he will be a free agent this upcoming offseason

Everyone knows the story of the Seattle Mariners. Amazing pitching and defense, but always that same putrid offense. The new official dimensions that Safeco will be in 2013 are as follows:

• The distance down the left-field foul line remains the same at 331 feet. • Instead of jutting out quickly to 341 feet, the left-field wall will jut out to 337 feet. • The hand-operated scoreboard will be moved, and as a result, the height of the outfield wall will be 8 feet from foul pole to foul pole. • From the left-field corner to the left-field power alley, the wall will be moved in 4 feet. • The distance at the left-field power alley will decrease from 390 feet to 378 feet. • From left center to straightaway center, the distance the wall will be moved in will vary from 4 feet to a maximum of 17 feet. At straightaway center field, the distance will decrease from 405 feet to 401 feet. • From straightaway center to the right-center power alley, the wall will move in 4 feet. The distance at the power alley will decrease from 385 feet to 381 feet. • From the right-field power alley to the right-field line, the dimensions remain the same.
Source: http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20121002&content_id=39364000&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

These new dimensions won't make Safeco a hitter's paradise, but it doesn't keep it as a pitcher's paradise either. The new dimensions really even the playing field, literally, with the rest of the stadiums in MLB. However, these new dimensions will have a huge impact on the Mariners offense. The hitters will be more comfortable and confident at the plate. This will be evident in the improved numbers they put up across the board as these numbers will be attributed directly towards the new dimensions. The new fences will do worlds of good for the Mariners sputtering offense, and could even put them into contention, of some sort ;).

Jesus Montero, a player I believe will benefit from the new dimensions of Safeco Field
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

This upcoming offseason will be huge, to say the least, for the Mariners. Their pitching doesn't need much improvement (could use a veteran starter or two), but it's the complete opposite for the offense. Jack Z will need to improve his bats big-time this offseason, he has already stated that this is his number 1 priority, and moving in the fences only increases the potential to land some big-boppers. Players always come into Safeco calling it "death valley" or "pitcher's heaven" because of the huge dimensions and the cold weather. Now, they will come in with positive mindsets towards the fences and will consider signing with the Mariners whenever the next time it is that they are free agents. This would have never happened with the old dimensions. I believe to be true that the one huge reason that Prince Fielder didn't sign with the Mariners was because of the huge dimensions (could have been the weather to, like mentioned before). Now these big-time free agents will at least consider us when choosing their teams and mulling over their offers. However, the owner could step in between these free agents and the Mariners, but that is a whole other story.

There is one crucial reason why I believe that this is the best decision the current Mariners front office has made in their tenure. That is because they are playing their cards to the strength of the team: pitching. The Mariners have had consistently solid pitching for the better part of the last 12 years, mostly due to the fact of the talent, but also due to the fact of Safeco Field's fences. With three young studs coming up in the minor league system, and certainly more to come, the Mariners have a plethora of exceptional pitching options. As I stated before, and have many times over my life, Jack Z needs to acquire the exceptional hitters, to go along with his exceptional pitchers. He needs to do his research and not make Bavasi like moves, i.e. Richie Sexson and Adrian Beltre, but needs to make moves to acquire hitters that are young, have potential, and will fit into these amazing new dimensions of Safeco Field. If he does this, the future looks very bright and promising for these young Mariners.

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