Thursday, November 4, 2021

April and Lydia Recap the 2021 MLB Season

Hey there, baseball fans! Yes, now that the World Series is over, it's time to do our traditional recap of the season with our in-house baseball experts/die-hard Seattle Mariners fans, April Hayashi and Lydia Sanchez.
Brian: Welcome.
Lydia: Or, you mean, youkoso. That's Japanese for "welcome," right?
Brian: It is.
Lydia: See, April? I've been studying.
April: Good for you.
Lydia: Did you know what that word meant?
April: I did not, actually.
Lydia: What? What kind of Japanese person are you?
April: The American kind?
Brian: Okay, let's get to baseball, please. What did you think about the World Series?
Lydia: At least the Astros didn't win.
April: Kind of interesting that an 88-win team took it.
Brian: Gives you hope for the Mariners.
April: Exactly.
Brian: Speaking of the Mariners, let's move on to them, since there's a lot of ground to cover.
Lydia: For sure. Fun differential, baby!
April: Your new favorite expression.
Lydia: That's right.
Brian: The end of the season was pretty fun, actually. Winning 90 games and almost making the playoffs was a pleasant surprise.
April: For a while there, I thought they were going to make Lydia's preseason prediction of 92-70 come true.
Lydia: But then the Angels had to go and mess it all up.
Brian: What do you think should be the team's priorities for the offseason?
Lydia: You go first, Grape Ape.
April: Well, I know lots of people are saying that the Mariners should open their wallets and spend big on free agents. Personally, though, I'm kind of wary of that.
Brian: How come?
April: A number of different reasons. For one, getting locked into an expensive, long-term contract can really hamstring your flexibility down the line. Two, you really have to be sure of the reasons that a free agent's current team isn't trying harder to retain them. Is it a budget issue? Are they rebuilding? Do they have a young player at the same position they want to see play? Or is it that maybe they just don't value the free agent player enough? And three, you also have to be sure of the player's character - like, once they cash in, so to speak, will they lose some of their motivation? I just think you have to be really careful with free agency, overall.
Brian: I guess a lot of it depends on how much you trust the judgment of the front office.
April: Yeah. I do like their philosophy of trading for well-regarded prospects who are blocked with their current teams. I think that's the new Moneyball. So, I prefer that route.
Brian: What about you, Lydia?
Lydia: I want them to sign Kris Bryant, Marcus Semien, and Max Scherzer! Oh, and that Suzuki guy, too. Not your cousin, April, the outfielder from Japan.
April (laughs): I know who you're talking about. Are you serious? You want them to go all in like that?
Lydia: Heck yeah. Live for today! Besides, I think the fan base would riot if they didn't sign at least one of those guys.
Brian: Maybe the amount of options in the market will help keep the prices reasonable.
April & Lydia: I doubt it.
Lydia: Jinx!
Brian: Yeah, you're probably right.
Lydia: Besides, honestly, I think they really have to go for it over the next year or so. I mean, you can always trade those guys later if it doesn't work out. Or, if you get stuck with an albatross contract, at least you know you gave it your best shot.
April: True.
Brian: Okay, how about we wrap up with predictions for the regular season awards. Go.
April: You first this time, Lyd.
Lydia: American League MVP, Vlad Jr.
April: Not Ohtani?
Lydia: I still have a grudge against that dude for signing with the Angels.
April (laughs): Okay.
Lydia: Cy Young, Gerrit Cole. Rookie of the Year, Not Jarred Kelenic, obviously. I'll go with Wander Franco. And Manager of the Year, our own Scott Servais.
Brian: Those are some good choices. What about the National League?
Lydia: I don't care about those guys.
Brian: Very well. April?
April: AL: Ohtani, Robbie Ray, Arozarena, and Servais. NL: Soto, Wheeler, Jonathan India, and Kapler.
Brian: All right, well, we'll see what happens on November 18th. Thanks for being here today.
April: You're welcome.
Lydia: You mean, dou itashimashite.
April: Wow, you really have been studying.

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