This is going to be reasonably quick; I have a very very long day ahead of me tomorrow…
Milton Bradley took Justin Duscherer yard tonight after Casey Kotchman picked up a walk. When he got up to the plate to the sound of Oakland fans booing, I was hoping so much that he would just crush whatever was thrown to him and get it over with. When I get a moment, perhaps I will spend some time wishing to find a million dollars. He was all smiles in the dugout – maybe just the thing he needed to settle in here a bit farther before coming home to Seattle next week. He followed that up with a wonderful sliding catch in left field during the A’s half of the inning, and while he didn’t manage to prevent Rajai Davis’s tag and score, he was able to get back on his feet from the slide and get the ball back to Jose Lopez in the infield. This is the first time I’ve been able to watch Bradley defensively, and I have to say, I very much enjoyed it. He plays fierce, and it works for him. Works for me, too.
I was initially going to say that I was a bit disappointed in Ryan Rowland-Smith’s first outing of the year, but if I step back for a second, I don’t know that it necessarily bothered me. He was held up offensively for the 5 innings he was in the game, with our guys scoring 2 in the first and 2 in the 5th before he was pulled, matching Oakland’s one-run-per-inning-or-so attack. Sure, it would have been nice if he had been able to keep the ball down, and sure it would have been nice if our bats would have played a little smaller than they did (I’m really not a person who has to have home runs all the time, small ball is not only completely acceptable, but very much welcome), but it was what it was. It’s his first game, he didn’t incur a loss, let’s give it some more time before we all start to freak out.
Sean White was brought into the 6th and had a reasonably smooth inning, thankfully. Brandon League allowed a run in the 7th to tie a 5-4 game, but all in all, I’m not super disappointed in his outing, either. Yeah, it could have been better, but it also could have been far worse. League was left in to take on some of the 8th inning when he was pulled, with two on and two out in exchange for Mark Lowe.
Mark Lowe pitched right into Adam Moore’s crotch before giving up the game-winning hit to Kurt Suzuki, Twitterverse explodes with dissatisfaction, I can now go to bed.
It is a loss, and that is unfortunate, and it is a fair question to ask that if we cannot take the Oakland A’s, what chance do we have against teams like the Texas Rangers or Minnesota Twins? People are already starting to echo the laments of 2008, but at this point, that’s just not fair. We’ve had problems, and pitchers have been used badly in tight situations, and our offense has not been up to par, yes. All of that. But I think I’ll wait until mid-to-late May to start tearing my hair out, breaking beer bottles in the fireplace out of anger, and debating fanship of the Yankees. We’re going to lose. We’re going to get swept. We’re going to fail. It’s tough to deal with that early on, sure, but let’s just relax a bit and have some nice herbal tea, maybe a massage, do a little meditative breathing, that sort of thing. We have a long way to go. We have guys who have yet to come off injured reserves. We have a long year.
As a total aside, some folks (mainly, the teams playing) might like you to know that there is free baseball at SafeCo Field this Saturday! High school baseball, but it’s free! You can sit wherever you want! More details here! I’m debating checking it out, if I can – it’s going to be a busy weekend.I understand there may be hot dogs available…
Don’t forget, game is on at noon tomorrow. This means I will miss it because I’ll be in school, but that’s OK – I’ll be taking some time out of my day to grace the city of Tacoma with my presence for the Rainiers home opener against the Colorado Springs SkySox tomorrow night. The roster has been released (Garrett Olson!) and I understand this is the last full season before some crazy renovations occur, so enjoy the old Cheney Stadium while you can. I will bring the photos and tales from the game, hopefully either later tomorrow night or sometime Friday.
Time for sleep. Go Mariners!