BROCK AND SALK

Mariners lineup may be more dangerous in playoffs than it looks

Oct 11, 2022, 11:30 AM | Updated: 11:34 am

Mariners Carlos Santana...

Carlos Santana celebrates his home run against the Blue Jays on Oct. 8, 2022. (Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images)

There’s no getting around the fact that the Mariners’ lineup doesn’t look as fearsome as the one the Houston Astros will deploy in their American League Division Series matchup.

Mariners announce ALDS roster, Game 1 lineup vs. Astros

Only three qualifying batters for Seattle had an OPS over .700 and just Julio Rodríguez posted one above .800 during the 2022 season, while the Astros had five over .700 including four who were over .800 for the season. Houston also has the benefit of most of its players being experienced in the playoffs, while several of Seattle’s key hitters were experiencing postseason baseball for the first time last weekend in Toronto.

If you dig a little deeper into Seattle’s lineup, like TBS MLB play-by-play announcer Brian Anderson has, you might find a glimmer of hope for the M’s in the best-of-five series against their AL West rival and the team with the second-most wins in all of MLB this year.

“My opinion with the Mariners is you have a few guys who have had bad seasons but have had great moments,” Anderson said Tuesday to Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk, “and have the ability to have huge moments in the postseason.”

Anderson, who is calling the M’s-Astros series for TBS, pointed to a couple of players who already came up big in the Wild Card sweep in Toronto as examples.

“We’ve already seen that with (Carlos) Santana, you’ve already seen that with (Adam) Frazier,” he said.

Santana, a 36-year-old switch-hitter who is playing in his fifth career postseason, had a big hit from each side of the plate in Saturday’s 10-9 comeback win, including a three-run homer (right-handed after the Blue Jays put in lefty reliever Tim Mayza) that went a long way in getting the M’s moving in the right direction after falling behind by seven runs. Not bad for a player who hit under .200 in 73 games with Seattle following a midseason trade from Kansas City.

The 30-year-old Frazier, meanwhile, struggled in 2022 after coming to Seattle in an offseason trade from San Diego, failing to regain the form that earned him a starting spot at second base on the 2021 National League All-Star team as a Pittsburgh Pirate. He slashed just .238/.301/.311 with three homers, 22 doubles and four triples in 156 games, but that didn’t matter once the postseason started. He went 4 for 9 against the Blue Jays, with three hits coming in the clincher and the last being the go-ahead RBI double that gave Seattle its one and only lead of the game in the ninth inning.

“I’ve seen a lot of Frazier in the National League Central (because) I still do Brewers games,” Anderson said of the former longtime Pirate. “That guy was a killer. I mean, he was such a good hitter and Mariners fans really haven’t seen that from him, but they will and they saw it Saturday. He can really hit.”

The beauty of the postseason, according to Anderson, is that everybody starts fresh, and that can be a boost for players who scuffled during the regular season.

“I think when you can scrub the batting average off the board and start with a playoff series, that makes a big difference for a lot of these guys,” he said. “So I see a lot of that with the Mariners.”

You can listen to the full conversation with Anderson, which includes why the Mariners and their fanbase in the playoffs reminds him of a recent NBA championship team, in the podcast below.

More Mariners-Astros coverage from Seattle Sports

• Mariners showed they can score without HR, must do so again vs Astros
• Fann: 2 questions that will define M’s ALDS chances vs Astros
• Drayer’s Notebook: ALDS start can’t come soon enough for Logan Gilbert
• M’s Breakdown: The comeback, the sweep, and facing the Astros
• Why M’s could get creative with their pitchers in ALDS vs Astros
• How did M’s make it this far? Same reason they could keep going
• Mariners ALDS schedule, Astros matchup and radio broadcast details

Brock and Salk podcast

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
Sunny
High 86° | Low 59°
Roof is open
Astros at Mariners today at 6:40pm

Brock and Salk

...

Seattle Sports Video

Video: Most Intriguing #Seahawks #16: LT Charles Cross

Is LT Charles Cross an elite left tackle? Salk seems to think he’s at a crossroads considering the high draft investment. #SeattleSports

15 hours ago

...

Seattle Sports Video

Video: Top 25 Most Intriguing Seattle Seahawks (#16): LT Charles Cross

The Brock & Salk Show on Seattle Sports 710 AM continues their annual Top 25 Most Intriguing Seahawks list heading into the 2024 season. Coming in at #16, left tackle Charles Cross. After being drafted with a top 10 pick two seasons ago, is Cross truly on his way to becoming an elite left tackle? […]

16 hours ago

...

Seattle Sports Video

Video: Which bats should the Seattle Mariners pursue in the trade market?

ESPN’s Jeff Passan joined The Brock & Salk Show to analyze Salk’s list of potential bats the Seattle Mariners should pursue in the trade market. Passan listed one player who ‘is the right fit’ for the Mariners between Brent Rooker, Yandy Diaz, Isaac Paredes, Lamont Wade, Johnathan India, Jazz Chisholm, and Charlie Blackmon. Listen to […]

17 hours ago

Seattle Mariners trade deadline Isaac Paredes Andrés Muñoz Logan Gilbert...

Brent Stecker

ESPN’s Passan: One hitter makes most sense for a Mariners trade

The MLB trade deadline market may be squished, but the Seattle Mariners may still be able to make a run at Tampa Bay slugger Isaac Paredes, says ESPN's Jeff Passan.

19 hours ago

Seattle Mariners Astros Luis Castillo Houston...

Brent Stecker

Why the Mariners ‘don’t look at the Astros’ how they used to

The Seattle Mariners hold just a one-game lead over the Astros in AL West ahead of a huge three-game series to open the second half this weekend.

24 hours ago

...

Seattle Sports Video

Video: Top 25 Most Intriguing Seattle Seahawks (#17): DL Derrick Hall

The Brock & Salk Show on Seattle Sports 710 AM continues their annual Top 25 Most Intriguing Seahawks list heading into the 2024 season. Coming in at #17, sophomore defensive lineman Derrick Hall. Despite being a second round pick, Hall struggled during his rookie season. Can he take a big step forward in Mike Macdonald’s […]

2 days ago

Mariners lineup may be more dangerous in playoffs than it looks