He is far from ready to start panicking with 136 games remaining in the season.

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A month into the 2017 season, Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto isn’t pleased with his team’s 11-15 start. He had hoped and believed it would be better given the expectations. But he is far from ready to start panicking with 136 games remaining in the season.

“All in all, I’m not pleased with where we are right now, but I understand how we got here and I do have an idea of how we are going to get out,” he said.

In speaking to a group of assembled journalists from the area at the annual Associated Press Sports Editors Northwest region meeting at the Seattle Times production facility in Bothell and then later after his one-hour talk, Dipoto discussed the positives and negatives to the start of the season.

“We are 11-15 and it is what it is, but the American League hasn’t left us behind,” he said. “There are a lot of good teams on paper that have not played well throughout the course of the first month of the season. With the exception of the Yankees, Orioles and the Astros in our division, nobody else is running away. We have the ability resuscitate and get back in.”

Dipoto was pleased with steadily growing and diversified offensive production from his lineup and the overall improved team defense stemming from more athletic personnel. The Mariners have scored 119 runs, second most in the American League and are averaging 4.58 runs per game — fourth best in the league — despite not ranking in the top five in team batting average (.243) or on-base plus slugging percentage (.724).

“Last year, we did it by hitting homers, this year we’ve done it by being more athletic and that is far more sustainable,” he said.

The Mariners outfield ranks first in MLB in defensive runs saved with 14. Seattle is second in the AL in stolen bases with 21.

“We’ve also transitioned to a much younger group of players,” he said.

As far as the negatives, the injury issues are obvious ones. It started before the season with relievers Shae Simmons and Steve Cishek and starting pitcher Drew Smyly, and has been followed by the recent issues with ace Felix Hernandez and outfielder Mitch Haniger.

“This dates back to the very start of spring training,” he said. “We’ve not been able to play a single game, whether it was spring training or leading into May 1, with the roster we envisioned having. That’s not an excuse, it’s a fact. Through the trials and tribulations of the first 26 games, we’ve managed to at least stay afloat without all the guys we’ve anticipated having. It’s been one curveball after another.”

With Hernandez and Smyly out, the Mariners are trying to patch together a rotation that had serious questions about production when fully healthy.

The inconsistency of the middle innings from the pitching staff — whether it’s the starters in their third time through the lineup or the bullpen — is a problem.

And of course, the struggles offensively at first base and catcher have been noticed.

“It’s been a difficult time for all the bodies we’ve put there,” Dipoto said. “It’s very clear that first base and catcher has really been less than hoped for or ideal.”

The Mariners rank second to last in the AL in production at both positions. Mariners first basemen — mostly Danny Valencia and Daniel Vogelbach — came into Monday hitting .160 with a .479 OPS, while the catchers — Mike Zunino and Carlos Ruiz — have combined to hit .160 with a .483 OPS. The two spots have been mostly hitting consecutively in the batting order, making it a wasteland where multirun innings are seldom born and runners in scoring position are left to die.

“It’s been a big hole,” Dipoto said.

For now, they will stick with the primary players at each position — the lack of internal replacements being a factor. The Mariners will likely go back to Valencia on a more full-time basis. Vogelbach struggled in his call up and seemed to lose confidence, allowing missed plays in the field to leak into his hitting. The belief is that Valencia will return closer to his .285 batting average and .800 OPS that he produced the past two seasons and he’s been better than expected defensively.

“There’s a reason we acquired Danny Valencia,” Dipoto said. “There is no magic potion. There is no magic tree of first basemen to pick from now.”

Zunino will still be the primary catcher. The Mariners value his defense and work with the pitchers and believe his hitting will come.

“There is a reason why Mike Zunino catches for us,” Dipoto said. “There’s a reason why I’ve fielded probably as many trades calls on Mike Zunino as a trade target for other teams as any other player we have. He’s a talented player. I trust Mike’s skill.”

Though Zunino doesn’t have a past track record of success like Valencia, Dipoto seemed confident that he will find some success. They aren’t asking him to hit .300.

“Right now, there’s a very different version of Mike Zunino than what you all saw in his struggles in 2015,” Dipoto said. “His at-bats are better. He’s getting more good pitches to hit, he’s just not hitting them. That is what I would call a slump and I don’t think it’s a flaw in his approach. We’ve got to get him back to staying short to the fastball and not missing it because that’s what is happening now.”

Dipoto hopes that his team can use this homestand to get right, following up on the previous 6-3 homestand that included a sweep of the Rangers, a team they’ll face in this six-game stretch.

“We were going to go though an 11-15 stretch of our season regardless; most teams will,” he said. “What we can’t do is we can’t get sucked into trying to win four games in a day. We have to go one at a time. It seems like a tired old baseball adage, but it’s true. The minute you start to think in the bigger picture than that, as the team on the field, it will snowball on you.”