Originally posted on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 5/16/13
NL style in the AL There is something of an uprising starting to rumble in the ranks of the diehard Mariners Nation. Why is it that we continue to field not one, but two short stops at our professional level who are hitting sub .200 when there is a more than capable guy at Tacoma? I have come up with two conclusions. #1, Jack Z can’t admit when he is wrong. #2, Eric Wedge is more comfortable with platooning the two guys, awaiting a hot spell, all in the name of defense first. The first one seems the more likely to me. Jack Z is a man who is treading very lightly on job security at this moment. More than one of his sure thing prospects at the top level are failing to get it done behind the plate. But the second reason could have some merit too. If, and that is a big if, the rest of the lineup continues to pick up the slack for Brendan Ryan, and Robert Andino. So where does Nick Franklin sit in all this? It seems we have the answer to all of our problems sitting down in Tacoma right now. Nick Franklin is tearing the cover off of the ball for the Rainiers so far this season. And as a seasoned minor league vet, it’s not like it would be a rush to send him up to the parent club this year. Nick Franklin has proven he is no fluke in the minors (Photo: Google) The one problem that lies in management though is the fact that Franklin is not on the 40-man roster. To make room for him, a player would have to be released, traded, DFA’d, cut, or any other reasoning management gives to players they no longer wish to employ. It seems like a no-brainer to me, and a few other people have vented their opinions on the inter webs as well, but we aren’t the one’s who make these decisions. It’s probably a good thing too, because I already have a plan in my head that would make the Mariners a World Series Champion this year, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. So who gets the axe? It seems to all boil down to one of two players getting shipped off into the world of baseball infamy, but which one of these two players is more worthy? Between Brendan Ryan, and Robert Andino, there really isn’t a lot of upswing in the offensive department. Ryan definitely has the upper hand on defense, but Andino is a more flexible choice for Wedge, as he has played most of the infield and all of the outfield in his past career. So who goes? The M’s have essentially put out a National League lineup for most of the 2013 season. Like a NL team, they are taking the bat out of the equation in the 9 hole. But in our circumstance, we are utilizing a defensive commodity all the while using a DH at the same time. It has worked so far, to an extent. We can’t blame Ryan or Andino for all of Justin Smoak’s bases loaded strike outs, or Dustin Ackley’s ground outs. Or the injuries early in the season to the outfield. But, let’s say if Franklin was brought up Wedge could use him in the 7th slot, slide Montero to the 8th slot, hit Ackley in the 9th slot, and have a better chance of pushing a run in from all 9 spots in the batting order. I would envision a batting order of this: Michael Saunders, Kyle Seager, Kendrys Morales, Michael Morse, Justin Smoak, Jason Bay, Nick Franklin, Jesus Montero, and Dustin Ackley. Seems like a pretty potent offense to me, even when players are struggling. So how ’bout it Jack? Let’s give Nick a shot! CLICK HERE CHECK OUT THE SEATTLE MARINERS CLUBHOUSE AT NWSB!
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