Be patient with slumping Mariners 

May, 13, 2010
When Baltimore Orioles right-hander Brad Bergesen brings a 7.36 ERA into a game and shuts you out into the eighth inning, you have some offensive problems. Such is the state of the Seattle Mariners, who were stymied by Bergesen on Wednesday. The M's bring a .231 batting average and a Paul Konerko-tying 13 home runs into Thursday's game.

It's becoming clear that no major league offense is contributing less for fantasy baseball owners than that of the sleepy Mariners, and that includes the Houston Astros. Sure, the Astros have scored fewer runs, but that team's middle of the order, buoyed by the return of Lance Berkman, is hitting now. With the Mariners, Ichiro Suzuki and Franklin Gutierrez are about the only players helping fantasy owners, although I have hope there is an end of their struggles in sight.

While the sleepy struggles on the field and in the clubhouse of future Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr. get too much attention -- "The Kid" is 40 and hit .214 last season, so expectations should have been low to begin with -- the fact is this struggling offense still has potential. Here are five Mariners hitters, or those who could soon be Mariners, that owners should keep an open mind about.