Currently the Mariners are in fourth place, 4 1/2 games behind the Disneyland Angels. The Mariners goal should be to catch and pass the Angels, finishing in 3rd place in the division. That would be a great finish. The Angels, who struggled early are playing well, having won seven of their last ten games, while the Mariners are five and five in their last ten. But teams run hot and cold, and injuries could play a factor.
The problem facing the Mariners is their recent struggle to break the ten games under barrier. After losing to the Pirates 9-4 on June 25th, they were 34-44, ten games below .500. After losing again to the Pirates, they beat the Cubs and were 35-45. They have been at 37-47, 38-48, and got to nine games below at 40-49 after beating Boston 11-4, but once again dropped down to 40-51.
In short, they are treading waters in Elliott Bay. It is unlikely they can catch the Angels unless treading water ceases and they get hot. That is hard to do when you have, at the moment, one reliable starter, that being Felix Hernandez. Iwakuma of late has been giving up lots of runs, especially ones that leave the ballpark. Saunders has been decent as a 3rd starter at 7-8, 4.51, but Harang as been woefully inconsistent with a 4-8, 5.38 record. Brandon Maurer and Jeremy Bonderman failed in the fifth starter role, and now Erasmus Ramirez, starting today against Boston will be given his chance. And outside of four relievers, the bullpen has been scary, to say the least.
The Mariner pitchers have an era of 11.74 with runners in scoring position, 20th in the majors. Mariner batters, conversely, hitting .242 overall, 25th in baseball, but are last in hitting with men in scoring position at .221.
So you can see the problem. It is hard to get a winning streak going when your pitchers have trouble stopping runs and your batters have trouble driving runs in. But a goal is a goal and one way to watch the next two months is to see what happens with the Mariners and Angels in the standings.