This afternoon’s game broadcast was run by the Rockies FSN people, but it was a game being broadcast, so I’m not going to complain…well, not too much…
Ryan Rowland-Smith took the hill for the Mariners today, with a battery of older (Mike Sweeney) and way younger (everyone else) guys behind him. His first bump in the road was giving up a double to Eric Young Jr, who is ridiculously fast. Young was also the first run in the game shortly thereafter. The Ms tried to make up for it in the second half of the first inning – Eric Byrnes accomplished a single, followed by a Ryan Garko single that sent Byrnes past second to collide with the Rockies’ second baseman, then scramble back to the bag, where he was declared safe. Mike Sweeney struck out swinging after receiving much praise from the announcers regarding his some 0.700+ BA, and Matt Tuiasosopo demonstrated some patience before finally striking out, leaving our runners stranded.
Rowland-Smith took it down a few notches in the second, getting all three of the batters he faced to fly or pop out. In our half, Ryan Langerhans flew out, Adam Moore flew out, and Josh Wilson made a valiant effort at knocking one over the wall, but it was run down in center over the warning track by a persistent Ryan Spilbourghs. Hyphen’s third inning was even rougher than the first; he gave up three hits and two runs (the second of which came on an error by Ryan-or-Matt Garko). RRS struggled through what he could of the 3rd inning, throwing a total of 66 pitches before Don Wakamatsu removed him and sent Marwin Vega in. Vega finished the inning with a Seth Smith ground out.
Mark Lowe came in for Vega in the top of the 4th, and walked Clint Barmes. Lowe threw a slider at Mike Paulk that slid right into the business end of Paulk’s bat for a single. The Rockies constructed a double steal to inch closer to home, and Eric Young Jr sacrificed Barmes in. Carlos Gonzalez sent a double bouncing off the back wall that Eric Byrnes was unable to turn into a play, sending Paulk in. With two more runners on (I can’t remember the other, but it doesn’t matter), Lowe hit Jason Giambi in the toe, loading the bases. It took me about 15 minutes or so to collect the information for this paragraph as the game was going on. I was actually going to say that it was just the top of the 4th inning again, because it was such a long time since I first typed it out – that is how slow things went. Lowe was asked to please sit down and recharge his sideburns, and some guy named Steve Bray was brought in. Steve Bray looks kind of like my friend Toby, without the crazy skater haircut. Toby always wanted to be a musician, and he amassed a lot of gear, but after we eventually lost touch, I never heard anything about him doing anything with or in the music world. Unlike my friend Toby, Bray actually accomplished what he set out to do. Like my friend Toby, it didn’t count for much.
Rockies starter Jason Hammel was still in the game by the bottom of the 4th. He struck out Ryan Garko, then dealt to Mike Sweeney, who smacked a standup triple that went glancing at an odd angle off the back wall (and might have been a double if it hadn’t). Matt Tuiasosopo struck out swinging, and as Hammel dealt to Ryan Langerhans, a wild pitch sent Sweeney home to put us on the board. Steve Bray remained in the game for us into the 5th inning, and plowed through all three Rockies he had to face. Hammel returned the favor in the bottom of that one.
Sean White came in to replace Steve Bray in the top of the 6th inning and managed to get Jonathan Herrera to pop out, Young Jr to strike out, and Carlos Gonzalez to ground out (yay, pitching). Matt Daley replaced Hammel in our offensive half of the 6th, and took all the Mariners to school; and I have to be honest, it was around this time that the game became very difficult to pay much attention to. I’m trying to ignore it, but I think that the recent Bill James revelations coupled with both our major and minor league squads getting their asses handed to them on plates has taken a little of the wind out of my sails. Also, needing to use a stuttering GameDay because practice jerseys don’t often feature players’ names on the back coupled with my lingering lack of familiarity with the National League made an already annoying game more annoying. If we could just get on with Actual Baseball, that’d be spiffy.
With the Mariners still trailing 5-1 by the top of the 9th and David Pauley still pitching, Jay Payton (both players ex-Orioles, apparently) nabbed a double, then tagged and took third with Eider Torres’ help on a sacrifice fly. I can appreciate wanting to hone your playing skills for the season, but at this point, it’s just adding insult to injury. Pauley walked Matt Miller, then Chris Ianetta slapped a single, sending Payton home, score 6-1. More insults. Cole Garner hit a triple, sending both runners on base home, score 8-1. I see an insulting trend here. Pauley was left in because at that point, why bother taking him out? Kenny Perez took a chunk out of a Pauley pitch and almost Pauley himself, “sacrificing” (really?) the hit to drive in Garner. Mike Paulk grounded out to end the top 9th.
Eric Byrnes shot a double off Juan Rincon, and Rincon and his catcher had a mound conference with Mike Carp up to bat, as if Carp was going to eat his way into the score at all. Rincon then walked Carp with nobody out. Then Chris Woodward lined one out to first, where it was easily caught by Paulk. Matt Tuiasosopo took a chunk out of the first pitch he got, roping one out past second and sending Byrnes’ pinch runner Maximo Mendez home. Ryan Langerhans, 0 for 3, went 0 for 4 on a pitch that looked mysteriously outside. Guillermo Quiroz flew out to deep center, and why did I bother with this today.
Come ooooon Real Baseball!