I haven’t been posting much over the past week because I’ve had a very sick cat and a very bad knee, and have been stressing both pretty hard. I’m pleased to report the kitty is doing much better, but unfortunately it means that I haven’t been able to write as much as I’d like to. The verdict is still out on my knee. So while I’m listening to possibly the worst baseball broadcast in recent memory (seriously, this reminds me of listening to the NASA moonwalk last week), I guess I’ll write about some things today.
I found this on Lookout Landing. A student is looking for people to fill out a survey about experiences at Everett Aquasox games. It probably took me about 10 minutes or so to fill out, and the questions are pretty simple – what sorts of tickets do fans most commonly buy, things about the team and stadium that may influence your decision to attend games, that sort of thing. It looks like he put a lot of effort into it, so I figured why not?
Erik Bedard is in good shape so far. Miguel Olivo, not so much. I didn’t hear or try to watch that particular game (if I even could have), but I’ve seen a few photos of the injury moment floating around the ‘net here and there, and it is obvious that Olivo was in a good deal of pain. I haven’t been able to catch up on reading at all (it’s suddenly turned into a massive uphill battle), but I understand that I should not anticipate his immediate return. Ouch. That’s rather depressing, as he is new – to me, anyway – and I’d like to get the chance to see him play, and sooner rather than later. Fingers crossed for a fast recovery, and not just for my own selfish reasons. Bedard, for his part, threw very well for his first time up, but I refuse to go nuts here. I’m glad he did well, I’m not going to panic about it. He seems pretty happy, so I’m pretty happy, and he’ll be great until he’s not anymore. Then everyone will get to go through the cycle of hating him that seems to happen every year, and all will be right in the world.
Taylor Halperin over at ProBallNW wrote a piece the other day about impermanence in baseball. I realized while reading the article that it’s a topic I haven’t thought about much in a while. The fact that players often get shuffled around and dealt out like cards used to really affect me when I was just starting to get into this game. But now, it’s doesn’t bother me as much. I certainly didn’t enjoy hearing that Mark Lowe was leaving, or that Ryan Rowland-Smith was taking off for Texas, and in the beginning, things like this would have actually caused me mental distress. But now, I look at it as a sort of opportunity. Not only have trades and free agency given me secondary and tertiary teams to follow, but it has made me more interested in the game when old Mariners’ new teams play Seattle. What used to drive me to light depression and heavy drinking is now making the game a little more interesting overall. Plus, it’s cool when your favorites find their way onto the roster of another team you like, ala’ JJ Putz and the Diamondbacks. It’s like being able to trace your family tree.
This has already come in from several sources, but it’s easier for me to link a blog post than try and find who Tweeted what. This was a done deal to pretty much anyone, I think, but it’s great to have confirmation: Marilyn Niehaus will throw out the first pitch on Opening Day, and Macklemore will do his thing, performing “My Oh My”. I’m going to take a stab and say that this may well be Macklemore’s biggest audience to date, being a local level entertainer. As a former musician myself, I feel nothing but excitement for him over this. A great song being performed in front of the most targeted audience possible. Wow. I’m definitely going to make the effort this time to be in my seat so I can see everything. I’ve missed some parts of the Opening Day ceremonies in the past, but this one I plan to be well available for. Very exciting.
In kind-of-related-to-the-Mariners news, Gregg Zaun has announced his retirement from baseball. I guess we’ll never get him now. All I can think is that, despite references to his arm not holding up like it used to, the idea of Rob Johnson at backup must have terrified Zaun so badly that he just opted out. Jeff cites the Ms as having avoided signing Zaun, and the possibility that they might have known something was up with his physical well-being. I seem to remember hearing something about Zaun not wanting to come to Seattle; unfortunately I can find nothing to back that memory up, but that is my recollection. I only vaguely remember thinking ‘well then I don’t want him here‘, in this kind of snotty, self-righteous voice in my head. I could be thinking of at least 90 other players who probably don’t want to come and play in Seattle, though…
This broadcast is still awful, but the Mariners are beating the A’s, and Felix Hernandez got an ovation when he left the hill. Even though it’s just Spring Training, I have to admit a little bit of excitement. I just paid for the remainder of my 16-game plan, I’m going to get some Opening Day tickets either next Monday or sometime later this week, and even though ESPN Seattle seems to not really care about these games, the fact that they’re happening is pretty exciting. The rest of my day after this game will be spent watching movies and keeping my knee as comfortable as possible. I have a Sounders game to walk to Wednesday, and would like my condition to improve itself as much as possible before then.