With three series left in the 2017 season, the Mariners are still alive in the postseason race, though the likelihood of a playoff appearance is slim after they lost their season-high sixth straight game on Thursday night. The fact that they’re still hanging around, however, is an accomplishment considering the amount of injuries the team ran into throughout the course of the season.
“We have largely remained competitive for the most part throughout, which I think is kind of remarkable all things considered,” Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said to Danny, Dave and Moore on Thursday. “But it has been a frustrating season from spring training with the onset of injury, through April and May when we at one point had 11 pitchers on the DL, to here in September when the Twins seemed to leave the back door open and we decided we didn’t want to walk through.”
Minnesota, which currently owns the second wild card spot out of the American League, is 5-5 over its last 10 games, but Seattle has stumbled to the tune of a 3-7 record over it last 10, and with the Mariners still five games behind the Twins and only nine games remaining, the deficit looks to be insurmountable.
While injuries have indeed played a big part in the Mariners missing several chances throughout 2017, Dipoto wasn’t so quick to let the team, organization or himself off the hook for other factors that could have been corrected.
“I’ve learned that we are largely inconsistent in our approach to the game, and I think a re-focus on fundamental baseball is important for us,” he said. “It’s the small things you do during the course of a game that over 162 games start to add up to big things. We just haven’t done them very well this year.
“The real story of our season, it was our inability to stay consistent. Some of that we can push off on the fact that our starting pitching from day to day was largely unpredictable because of those injuries, but some of it was just the lack of attention to detail on all of our parts. We’re gonna have to deal with that through the offseason and figure out how to solve that problem headed into next year, but I’m very confident in the talent level that we have on the team, at least the foundation to build with.”
Dipoto spoke at length about that foundation, as well as how the team has built depth that will come into play in 2018, in the interview, which you can listen to in its entirety embedded above or at this link.