Mistakes aren’t misfortune, failed execution isn’t a bad break and optimistic references to last season’s surprising success carrying into this season, which should’ve stopped about a month ago, should probably be finable offenses upon future mentions.

With each passing game, the 2022 Mariners, a supposedly better and more talented version (when healthy), has yet to provide extended glimpses of what it was supposed to be — a postseason contender.

For reasons largely passing standard baseball logic, the 2021 Mariners would’ve found a way to win Wednesday’s game vs. the Minnesota at T-Mobile Park. It probably would’ve been by one run and in their final at-bat or even extra innings.

That team, for whatever reason, had the ability to win games close games by getting the key outs when required, having the productive at-bats when necessary and finding a way to success when not expected.

Instead, the current version Mariners turned a winnable game into a disappointing 5-0 defeat, dropping two of three games and losing a series against the American League Central leaders that should’ve been won.

It was the eighth time they’ve been shut out this season. And in their last nine losses, they’ve failed to score more than three runs in all of them.


“Last year, we were kind of the cardiac kids, winning games late, one-run games, and that might not just be us this year,” said pitcher Marco Gonzales, who gave the Mariners an outing good enough to win.

The Mariners’ offseason acquisitions of lefty Robbie Ray, second baseman Adam Frazier, third baseman Eugenio Suarez and outfielder Jesse Winker were supposed to make this team even better than last year.

But this group hasn’t found a consistent path to success like last year’s team. And while last season’s success in close games (33-19 in one-run games) had some luck factors, the performance level was better. This team has yet execute well enough on consistent basis to create good fortune.

“I feel like almost every night that we’ve been right in the ballgame, and then it comes down to a matter of giving them enough support on the offensive side, and we haven’t been able to do that,” manager Scott Servais said. “You get into stretches like this throughout the course of the season. You’ve got to find ways to get through it. Typically, it’s doing the little things.”

A critical and forgettable seventh inning offered a distinct juxtaposition to last year’s success and this season’s struggles.

After six scoreless innings, Gonzales found a little trouble in the seventh. He allowed a one-out bloop single to Gary Sanchez and walked Luis Arraez.


During a mound visit from Servais, Gonzales told his manager he had a ground ball in him for a double play. Servais left him in and Gonzales got Jose Miranda to hit a ground ball to third.

But Suarez didn’t get a quick throw off to start the potential double play and his eventual throw was to the inside of the bag, which slowed Frazier’s throw to first base. Miranda was safe and the inning continued. But not for Gonzales, who was lifted with right-handed hitting catcher Ryan Jeffers coming to the plate.

“Jeffers was a little bit different matchup, he is much better against left-handed pitching than he is against right-handed pitching,” Servais said.

Servais turned to Paul Sewald, who was his most effective reliever last season but has struggled of late. Sewald left an 0-1 fastball over the middle of the plate that Jeffers hammered off the wall for an RBI single and a 1-0 lead.

“Paul didn’t get the ball where he wanted to,” Servais said. “It was a big out in the game. They got a big swing and we didn’t get it done.”

Sewald retired the next batter to keep it at 1-0.

But the lack of execution continued in the bottom half of the inning. Suarez singled and Winker worked a walk to start the frame. Servais asked Dylan Moore to bunt the runners over against side-armer Joe Smith.


Moore instead popped the bunt up for an out.

“I was trying to get on top of the ball,” Moore said. “I knew that he had some sink and threw me a four-seam instead. I’ve got to do better in that situation. I’ve got to get that down. It’s my job.”

Meanwhile Luis Torrens hit a weak groundout that at least moved up the runners. With the Twins bringing in lefty Caleb Thielbar to face Taylor Trammell with two outs, Servais turn to Abraham Toro to pinch hit. The switch-hitting Toro produced a flyout to right field to end the inning.

The Twins tacked on three more runs in the eighth and another in the ninth.

“The mindset and the emotion right now is not a panic,” Gonzales said. “We hold ourselves to very high expectations here. Our mindset needs to be the game tomorrow, winning tomorrow, winning the next day and that compounds to winning series, having good weeks, having good months. We are too talented, we have too good of a group to think — ‘What’s wrong? What are we doing differently that needs to be fixed?’

“We need to keep going and put our heads down and go to work. There’s a lot of work to do. But this group’s cut out for it.”