I’ve often enjoyed the Game Day screen shots you see around the M’s blogosphere, so here’s my first attempt.
First let’s look at Ryan Langerhans’, greatest Mariner of all time, triumphant home run last night.
That is one fat sunova bitch fastball. Langerhans is extremely patient. Yes, he is only batting .143, but that is only based on 14 at bats. He’s walked eight times already in his brief time up here, getting on base at a .455 clip. His patience allows him to punish pitches like this one. Yeah he’s not going to hit 30 bombs, but he’s also not going to get himself out like Mr. Sweeney. He’s going to wait for that sweet pitch even if it means striking out looking every once in a while. These are reasons I love Langerhans so very very much.
On to Griffey. Junior is extremely patient as well. He is also looking for that one fastball he can still handle.
The problem is, he can’t handle it any longer. Here’s his juicy fastball:
These are both very similar pitches. Junior’s was around 94 MPH while Langerhans’ was around 92. They both arrived at the plate around 85 MPH. Juniors broke about 2.2″ while Langerhans’ broke 3.8″. Junior’s is a bit higher in the strike zone, which is usually what they tell pitchers NOT to do while they are pitching to future HOFers.
The point I’m trying to make is, yes Griffey is done. I hate saying it. It saddens me greatly. But we are at the point where Griffey is really dragging the team down. Sure this comparison is based on 2 isolated at bats, but we’ve seen this all year. Griffey has to guess, and even when he guesses right, he’s incapable of doing anything with it. At this point in his career he is WORSE than Langerhans. He is WORSE than Josh Wilson. If Wak batting him 7th behind those two says anything, it says “Hey Junior, we really appreciate all you’ve done, but go home to Orlando and be with your family.”