A team that's now 59-82, the Seattle Mariners came home to a media that was a bit critical of manager Eric Wedge for leaving rookie LHP Charlie Furbush in Wednesday's game an inning too long - costing the team and Furbush what appeared to be a 1-0 victory.
"Of course we want to win every night, but part of my job with playing these kids is to challenge them and find out how they respond," Wedge said. "That means asking for one more inning, giving a struggling hitter one more at-bat, one more game.
"That's the discipline we've got to have. You want to see what they can do, keep them moving forward."
Wedge obviously knew the risks of staying with Furbush.
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"A lot of these guys will be out there for us next year," Wedge said. "What we learn - and what they experience - will help them be more consistent in 2012. Kids come up and struggle, whether it's right away of a month into it. They have to learn what that's like, how to get through it.
"When I was in Cleveland, I said at one point our team needed name recognition - our fans didn't know Grady Sizemore, Cliff Lee, Franklin Gutierrez, Victor Martinez, CC Sabathia. They found out. I could probably say the same thing about this team now."
For Wedge, the toughest part of September is finding time for all his players. In the bullpen, for instance, he has nine RHPs. The Mariners have three third basemen - Kyle Seager, Alex Liddi and Chone Figgins - and two other infielders capable of playing the position, Luis Rodriguez and Adam Kennedy.
"I'll get everyone time, we want to see them all," Wedge said.
Seeing them may cost the Mariners a game or two. This season, that's not a factor. Next year, it will be.