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Seattle Mariners Betting Odds – Good Plan, Bad Luck

Posted by Dale Lalonde on 3/24/2010 2:28:42 PM

In sports betting circles, the Seattle Mariners provide a very intriguing team to follow in 2010. In a new-look A.L. West, the Mariners – due to the wheeling and dealing of highly-regarded General Manager Jack Zduriencik – have made many definite upgrades to their roster. However, recent developments this Spring have cast a shadow over the coming season, reminding us that the plans of mice and men can always go awry due to the course of human events. What are the sportsbook odds that the Mariners will win their division? Let’s put it this way: They’re worse than they were when Spring Training began a month ago.

Seattle Mariners Betting Odds: +3050 To Win World Series
  • Pitcher Cliff Lee suffered an abdominal strain in a spring training game on Monday, March 15.
  • Outfielder Milton Bradley has been ejected from two games this spring.
  • Closer David Aardsma carried a 10.80 ERA through his first four spring-training appearances

Batting Lineup – Seattle Mariners Betting Odds

The Mariners’ lineup is better, but it’s still not all the way there. In Safeco Field, a pitcher’s park with deep power alleys and a large center field, this lineup should actually be pretty good, but on the road, it will suffer in hitters’ parks where power needs to be brought to the table.

Seattle should thrive because of what it has at the top of its order. Manager Don Wakamatsu has settled on a top three of Ichiro Suzuki (batting in the lead-off spot), followed by new acquisitions Chone Figgins (from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim) and Kasey Kotchman (from the Boston Red Sox). Figgins will be a particularly good upgrade from good-field, no-hit third-sacker Adrian Beltre, and Kotchman offers promise in the number three slot in the batting order.

It’s in the middle where things are much less certain. The cleanup hitter, Milton Bradley, has some degree of pop, but he’s not a massive RBI guy on par with elite cleanup hitters in the sport. Bradley is much more a No. 6 hitter than a number-four man, and when one considers the fact that Bradley has bounced around several big-league ballclubs over the years, due to internal strife with managers and coaches, it’s hard to see his presence in the lineup as a plus. Bradley tore up the Chicago Cubs’ clubhouse last season, and now the Mariners – in one of the few suspect moves Zduriencik made in the Hot Stove period – will be forced to deal with the messes Milton makes.

Jose Lopez will swing a good stick for the M’s at second base, but Franklin Gutierrez is much more of a question mark in center field and catcher Rob Johnson is a decidedly unproven hitter. Designated hitter Ken Griffey will be great in the clubhouse, but he’s not the dynamic hitter he used to be. This is a lineup that earns very mixed reviews.

Starting Pitching – Seattle Mariners Betting Odds

MLB betting experts had a right to tout the Mariners as A.L. West favorites when Cliff Lee – the most dominant pitcher over the course of the entire 2009 postseason – came to Seattle to join Felix Hernandez in the starting rotation. However, an abdominal injury has quickly altered the outlook. One of the very best pickups in baseball will start the season on the shelf. The last time Lee suffered an abdominal injury, in 2007, he went 5-8 with a 6.2 ERA. The Seattle Times has noted that the pitchers who would have to eat up more innings in Lee’s absence – Ryan Rowland-Smith and Doug Fister – have ERAs between above 7.00 through March 19 in their spring outings. One can see the foundation of this rotation crumbling very quickly.

And oh, remember that Erik Bedard is still wounded, making him unavailable for a substantial portion of the season.

Bullpen – Seattle Mariners Betting Odds

David Aardsma might be working out the kinks, and nothing more. He wouldn’t be the first pitcher to post bad ERA numbers in spring and then produce a good season. However, there is a reason to be concerned about Aardsma. The pleasant 2009 surprise at the back end of the Mariners’ bullpen will surely be confronted by hitters who will have better scouting reports this season. Aardsma will have to be much better than last year just to maintain a track record of overall quality and stature.

Outlook – Seattle Mariners Betting Odds

In terms of winning their division and making the playoffs, the Mariners pose an online betting quandary. So much truly depends on the health of Cliff Lee. With him, this is a 90-win ballclub with a shot at perhaps 96 wins. Without Lee, forget about it. Stay tuned to the injury reports is about all one can say right now. If forced to make a prediction, the M’s won’t win the West. The Angels have lost people, but Texas has made some upgrades.

Projected Finish In Division: Second



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