I won’t laugh or say ‘I told you so’, because that’s rude and childish, and I don’t roll that way unless I’m joking around. Furthermore, the fact that this happened doesn’t fill me with any sort of happiness or vindication. I made a sarcastic jab on my old FaceBook account the other day, out of some degree of spite at Carlos Silva and his behavior, but I really don’t blame the Cubs for trying to keep him or getting rid of him when they figured out they couldn’t anymore. They survived one year of him and his not-my-fault attitude, and now the whole thing is over for both parties. Silva keeps getting paid more money he won’t actually earn, and both the Cubbies and Mariners are free of the drama. The only thing I can really give Silva any kudos for is the fact that unlike some ex-Mariners, he actually participated in the bullpen rituals when he was last in an Ms uniform. While Miguel Batista arrived late and sat aside from the rest of the relief corps during the game, Silva actually put in some effort to be part of that bullpen, and doled out hugs and fist bumps and single innings as necessary. But that was only a small part of his presence here, and the rest of him will certainly not be missed. I suppose that at his age, another team might – might– decide to pick him up for a year or two. I mean, Batista got another job with the Nats after he left Seattle, so anything’s possible. It should comfort no one that there is or was another Carlos Silva whose career apparently ended in Single A Pittsburgh almost faster than it began, at the precious age of 21-ish. Looks like the Pirates dodged that bullet…
Speaking of bullpens, a friend just this morning brought something to my attention that I’m not quite sure I had fully realized, if it had hit me at all. No more John Wetteland, Mark Lowe, Garrett Olson, Sean White…almost all the guys from the 2009 and 2010 bullpens are gone now, and there are new guys, guys who don’t know, that will be taking their place. What will happen? Will they just randomly walk across the field before the game of their own accord? Will there be a helmet of any kind other than batting? Will Brandon League or David Aardsma step up and take over the role of quirky group leader? Or will they just sit there on the bench or stretching, not talking to one another, looking bored, chewing gum or seeds and waiting, like the 2007 and 2008 Mariners bullpens, and every other bullpen in baseball? Nick might have brought up the single biggest question for 2011, since all other questions about performance can be quantified by numbers – WILL THE BULLPEN STILL BE WEIRD? I certainly hope so, but there is no choice than to wait and see. Will I love them any less? Will my fascination with pitching wane without that sort of unique group personality we’ve come to enjoy over the past few years? I don’t think so. But something will certainly feel just a little left of center, just a little off. It would be a striking loss, and I would definitely miss it, but the nature of change being what it is, it also wouldn’t surprise me if those days are just gone for good, brilliant chapters in an otherwise pedantic read. I hope not, but I’m going to start preparing now.
Just in this morning, Luke French, Chris Gimenez and Josh Bard were cut and sent to Tacoma. At least French was, Jeff doesn’t specify exactly where the other two have gone, but I’d hazard a guess they’ll be flying Rainiers colors soon. The good news? Michael Pineda solidly makes the number five starting slot. French’s last outing was good, but not quite good enough for the cut – however what is great about this situation is that we have a much-improved backup in case of injury, and I no longer fear Luke French. Well, not as much. Chris Ray and Jamey Wright have been added to the 40-man, which in the long-term means very little, but in the short term it means that Chris Ray and Jamey Wright have been added to the 40-man and are probably going to start the year in the bullpen. Good for them. The Mariners website has not yet been updated, so I cannot readily visually ID Chris Ray, but I’m sure it’s fine.
No Mariners game on any TV channel today for me and my day off, but there is a college ball game on FSN at 11am today, so maybe that will have to suffice. Once again, ESPN Seattle would rather have shows on about basketball teams in other cities and the football offseason than Spring Training baseball, so unless I want to watch GameDay (not particularly), it’s the Cougars playing California for me. We’re in the home stretch though, only 4 more days until Actual Baseball starts, then we can all collectively exhale.