When Oregon Sports News went on hiatus for a summer break on June 21st, the Seattle Mariners were 29-39, ten games under .500, and coming out of a much-needed off day. As the presses were grinding to a stop in Portland and across the Pacific Northwest at large (a metaphoric reference to a 20th-century relic known as newspapers), the Mariners went on a five-game winning streak. However, things still looked bleak at five games under .500, especially as they lost back-to-back games to the Los Angeles Angels and the Baltimore Orioles to fall back to seven games under .500. Then something miraculous happened. They won three, lost to the Oakland A’s, and then refused to lose again.
The re-opening of OSN and the corresponding MLB All-Star Break, great a Mariners team that has tied a franchise-tying record winning streak of 14 games and is 51-42, nine games over .500. The team of Julio Rodriguez, Eugenio Suarez, and Robbie Ray have matched the 2001 Mariners of Ichiro, Edgar Martinez, and Jamie Moyer for most consecutive wins in franchise history. Unironically, that 2001 team was the last Mariners team to make the playoffs.
At the beginning of the OSN hiatus on June 21st, the Mariners’ odds of making the postseason were less than 1%, according to Fangraphs. Now in the All-Star break week, the Mariners have a 68% probability of playing at least one more game in October and at home to boot. Heck, they have a 1.2% chance of winning the division, odds even higher than making the playoffs when you stopped getting the highest quality content from your favorite sports website in all of the Pacific Northwest.
When the Mariners resume play on Friday, the battle of Texas will commence at T-Mobile Park in Seattle with three games against the first place in the AL West, Houston Astros, followed by three games against the not anywhere near first-place Texas Rangers. Then, beginning on Thursday, July 28th, the Mariners will enter a one-week gauntlet that should give fans a realistic look at how good this team really is. Four games in Houston are then followed by three in the Bronx against the New York Yankees, who currently hold the best record in all of baseball.
The Astros and the Yankees combined have a 28.1% chance of winning the World Series compared to the Mariners’ current odds of 1.7%. A good showing in late July, early August, could narrow those odds considerably. But, as a last resort, if things get tight in September, Oregon Sports News could take a short break ahead of college football and the NFL. It’s worked before.