During the 20th Anniversary of the World Series, Diamondbacks take on the Mariners
This weekend, the Diamondbacks will be taking on the Seattle Mariners for the first time this season. They haven’t faced the Mariners since 2020. In that 2020 season, the Diamondbacks went 1-2 against the northwest team.
The Mariners and Diamondbacks have had rather opposite seasons. The Mariners were not expected to truly contend for the playoffs until 2022 at the earliest. Instead, the Mariners are 3.5 games behind the Red Sox for the second Wild Card spot. They have had incredibly timely hits and solid pitching. With a record of 71-62, you can definitely say the Mariners have overachieved. This is made even more obvious when you observe they have a negative run-differential of 57.
Meanwhile, for the Diamondbacks, they have definitely not had the season they were expecting. While having to deal with loads of injuries and underperformance, the Dbacks have had the 3rd hardest schedule this year. Their record reflects it as they are 45-90 on the year and in the last place of the National League.
The two organizations are quite familiar with each other though. During the off-season after the 2016 MLB season, GM Mike Hazen made his bold first statement move as GM of the Diamondbacks. He made a franchise-changing trade with the Mariners. I guarantee the Mariners and their fans regret the trade.
Mike Hazen trade Jean Segura (fresh off a great year with the Dbacks), Mitch Haniger (current star of the Mariners), and Zac Curtis (relief pitcher) for former top-100 prospects Ketel Marte and Taijuan Walker. Mitch Haniger has blossomed into a high-quality corner-outfielder for the Mariners despite two injury-ravaged years. Segura was later traded for their great shortstop J.P. Crawford.
Meanwhile, the Dbacks clearly got the best side of the deal. Ketel played most of the 2017 season in Triple-AAA until Nick Ahmed got injured. Ketel was the starting SS for the team throughout September and the playoffs. He’s since grown into an MVP-All-Star caliber player who can center-field, second base, or shortstop. Ketel’s got tremendous power and contact skills. Additionally, he signed a team-friendly contract. Plus, the Dbacks got a great year+ out of Taijuan Walker until shoulder/elbow injuries destroyed his future with the team. Although, I still don’t understand why Mike Hazen untendered Walker following the 2019 season. Hindsights’ 2020.
The Dbacks are 12-18 lifetime vs the Seattle Mariners. At home, the Snakes are 7-5 whereas, on the road, they are 7-11. The Dbacks haven’t had much luck in their history against the team with the longest playoff drought in the MLB currently. Hopefully, the Dbacks can win some games this weekend and help ensure that the drought continues.