An interesting matchup with the Yankees of the late 1980s, who were still contenders, but like the Yankees of the mid-1980s, they just contended and didn’t manage to win the AL East. Back then and until 1994, the only way you make the MLB Playoffs is to win your division. So finishing second or third, even if you just finish a few games out of first, was not good enough to make the AL Playoffs or NL Playoffs. So the greatest franchise in MLB missed the playoffs for the final eight seasons of the 1980s, because they couldn’t win their division. But that is a topic for a future post as far as why they couldn’t win their division.
The Mariners on the other, were just starting to become fairly competitive at this point. They didn’t have their first winning season until the early 1990s, but could no longer be counted on to finish dead last in the AL West. Because they were good enough to now beat good teams. But it wasn’t until the 1990s that they actually became very good and making the AL Playoffs and winning the AL West. Because they finally put teams together that were built for the Kingdom. Which was a great hitters stadium, where the ball flied and where dimensions were fairly short. And where they had more ground ball pitchers.