Should I panic? Should I not panic? Should I start stockpiling jokes about things that suck? Should I take up drinking as more than just a hobby? What do I do?! I feel like some form of action needs to be taken here, but cannot figure out what it must be.
Last night’s game was hard to watch. I did it, but it made me sad. I tried to be skeptical and laugh it off in front of Tom (who has recently come back from a lengthy tour to the Seattle Mariners being bad, yet again), but inside, I gotta tell you – it’s killing me. I love our team. I swear I do. I love all the unique little bits and pieces that put it together, and I want those bits and pieces to succeed as a whole and individually. It slays me that our starting pitching is so good, and less than two months into the season, other teams know that all they have to do is either keep our offense down or wait until Don Wakamatsu goes to the bullpen before they burn us down. We built a team on pitching and defense, but we seem to have sacrificed offense in the meantime, and in a bad way. When your Triple-A callups are your offensive battery…well, that’s just not right.
And I don’t mean to kick anyone when they’re down, but how much longer is the Ken Griffey Jr thing going to last? Do we have to wait until the entire population of SafeCo Field is booing him when he walks up to the plate? Because if this continues, it’s only a matter of time before even the most casual of casual fans realizes how far downhill things have gotten. Per Geoff Baker’s most recent blog post, Ken Griffey Jr – Ken. Griffey. Junior – has a batting average of .182, and a .452 OPS. I’m not even into stats and I can tell you that’s worse than bad. Lots of you have far more history with Griff than I do. Is this really how people want to remember him? Or can The Kid truly do no wrong, forever protected in a shiny force field of his own past, regardless of what happens today, or tomorrow, or the next day, or (not) in October? I’m not so sure he’s safe…that booing thing, it’s on its way, especially with 0-for-4 performances like last night. And I don’t want to see that; it would just about break my heart.
As if I needed any more gasoline to throw on an already-huge fire, Dave at USS Mariner brought up win percentages last night. We’re behind Kansas City, second from last in the AL. Behind. Kansas. City. I would love to be stunned, but all I can do is throw my hands up in the air – and not in the good, like-I-just-don’t-care way, either. Like many others, I have tickets to this mess. I am doing manual labor to pay off a debt to friends so that I can go to at least 16 games this year, because I love baseball and I love the Seattle Mariners. There’s a reader at LookoutLanding who got people to pool together money so that he could use his full season tickets to hang a banner that says “In Z We Trust” over the railing, letting our front office know that we support them and their decisions. That woman next to him shows up to all of her games, Ichi-Meter and “Area 51” signs in hand. Rhyanna is still down by the bullpen with her helmets. The Four Old Bats are still at every game I’ve been to, as well. There was such a positive reaction to the Ryan Rowland-Smith “Hyphen” commercial this year that those shirts started being carried by the team store. People still buy tickets, they still go to games, they’re still happy to be there. They still believe in this team.
And I am no exception. I still love this team.
But win some games, guys. For the love of all that is holy, just win.