I am not winning my bet against the weather today, so putting off what will be a damp, dirty attempt at gardening later on to write just seems like the right thing to do.
I found out when it happened, but Mike Sweeney’s retirement caused me a day of sadness on Friday. Mike Sweeney wasn’t a great baseball player. He certainly had his moments, and he was a member of my so-far favorite Mariners team ever (after 3-ish years of fandom, it’s not too difficult to pick one), but he’s not Hall of Fame material. And it doesn’t matter. Sweeney was a good teammate. He was a guy who probably made other guys happy to come into work, a guy who probably would have loaned personal equipment to a rookie, a guy fans liked as a guy even if they didn’t like him as a player. He was also a guy who changed my mind about him within a few months of being here, something that’s kind of difficult to do. It’s certainly easier to go down than up, and Sweeney went up. He’s also leaving the game gracefully, and on schedule; he and his wife had discussed the possibility of another season or two back in 2009, and that’s exactly what he did. I’m happy for him that he could retire with a ring, even if his own part in obtaining that ring was marginal. The guy had a good career, and I for one will remember him fondly. Good luck with your future and your family, Mike. You definitely deserve it.
We’ve lost some more guys to the yearly pre-season paring-down. And Gabe Gross. I can’t say I’m surprised or discouraged by Denny Bautista. I was horrified the other day, but now I’m just comfortable. I also love adjectives. Tom Wilhelmsen’s continued presence on the roster is both surprising and exciting. I love a good baseball story – from Single A to the majors in a year? That’s a good baseball story – but only if it actually works. Otherwise, it’s just sad and disheartening. Adjectives! Seriously, though, I almost kind of hope Wilhelmsen makes it – I haven’t been holding out a lot of hope because I’ve only seen a small bit of what he can do, and wasn’t able to see him at all last year, even in Everett. Not that I remember, anyway. We have another week of this.
I literally just discovered that MLBN is showing the Seattle/Texas game today, so that gives me yet another excuse to not go outside in the weather. For a gardener, I make an excellent baseball fan. The rain has let up a bit as I post this, I should at least make an effort to get to Home Depot…