Taking the series from Canada

We got to the Jays’ Ricky Romero early in the game tonight with yet another home run dealt by Ryan Langerhans. I’ve always been a Langerhans fan, but I am starting to become more settled into that line of thinking lately. I have also come to the conclusion that I prefer Michael Saunders in left field over Milton Bradley…I think I might have actually come to that conclusion last year, but both players have spent a lot of time so far this season reminding me why. I am still completely into Milton Bradley succeeding, but he seems to have a mean case of the Rauuuuuls in left, and it is obvious that there are catches that Saunders would make that Bradley simply doesn’t, or can’t. Despite this, I still get upset when someone in the bleachers taunts Bradley for just about anything, regardless of whether or not they’re a fan of the team, and regardless of whether or not he’s done something wrong within the context of the game. Despite all the drama, he’s still wearing a Mariners uniform, and I support him in the same way I supported Miguel Batista when he was here – a little grudgingly, and at a distance. But still, yay, support!

I’m not saying anything everyone else doesn’t already know here, but Michael Pineda is just stellar, and if he’s not getting attention on a national level yet, I have to think he might be soon. Tonight he was mixing in a lot of curves and changeups along with his 4-seamer, a little more pitch diversity than maybe we’ve seen before? I may be wrong, but it feels like it. I know it’s been said before, but Pineda really does look like a Felix Jr out there, and tonight he really rocked it – confident, hat cocked to the side, calm and collected as he did his job. He and Miguel Olivo worked very well together. Pineda was still throwing fire in the top of the 8th, and soon after his first out, he was only at 100 pitches. But he was getting tired by then, and walked Yunel Escobar. After giving up a single to Edwin Encarnacion. After giving up a 2-RBI hit to Corey Patterson to run the score 3-2, Pineda was pulled to a rousing standing ovation to the 15,000 or so crowd in attendance.

Pineda was replaced by Chris Ray, who got Jose Bautista to pop out to Justin Smoak in foul territory. Smoak collected himself in time to gun it to Miguel Olivo, who used his entire body to ram into Corey Patterson at the plate, in time for the out. A lot of people on Twitter didn’t see too happy about this in light of Olivo’s passed ball before Pineda was pulled, but I rather enjoyed it. Again, a lot of people have history with Olivo that I simply don’t have, so I’m afraid I don’t have the desire to be negative about him, nor do I have the numbers to complain. He did GIDP to end the 8th with the Mariners having a one-run lead and the bases loaded, but I guess I’ve simply become accustomed to that sort of thing around these parts. Maybe I’m still high from the win last night, and the good start today.

As our interim closer, Brandon League was brought in for the 9th, and quickly took care of Adam Lind with a flyout. Aaron Hill popped one up into foul territory that fell into the capable glove of Justin Smoak right near the dugout fence. JP Arencibia was up next, and League wound up dealing 4 pitches to him, the last of which was a changeup that Arencibia swung at, after fouling two. Oops. Mariners win 2-3, taking the series from the Blue Jays. I am very pleased.

So a few things that I wanted to mention in the last post but didn’t…

Milton Bradley’s earplugs. I get the distinct impression that there is some sort of theatrics being associated with this. Am I wrong? Over the past 24 hours or so, I’ve been trying to bring myself to care, but I just can’t. If he doesn’t want to hear the fans – ours and the opposing team’s – ripping on him all game long, I don’t see why he should have to. If the earplugs work for him,  he should wear them, even if they’re only to send a message to the people in the stands that think their insults are making a difference.

Adam Moore. I don’t have the words to properly convey the sadness I feel over the fact that Moore’s surgery was more involved than they initially thought it might be. I wasn’t happy about losing him for a short time, because maybe a little Adam Moore is better than no Adam Moore at all. But now no Adam Moore is exactly what I’m getting. And no Josh Bard, either – Chris Gimenez was called up to replace Moore in favor of Bard, and even though I like Bard, I’m not so naive to think I know better than the organization here.  Either they want to see more Gimenez, or he’s simply more solid at the Triple A level than Bard has been, so the choice is obvious.

Lastly, the Orioles are still in first place by a game or two (seriously, I can never remember how to figure that out). Hold me, I’m scared. I’m sure that the Yankees, who are starting to creep up the ladder, will eventually overtake them, but for now, I can relax and enjoy it. The Phillies are also first in their division, and Arizona isn’t doing great, but they’re not doing terribly, either. It’s not huge consolation for the Ms being in last place, but it – and the Mariners win tonight – will have to do for now.

And that’s it, it’s bedtime. Tomorrow will be nice; listening to baseball on the radio while at work makes the work day go so much faster. And I get dinner with friends tomorrow night without fearing that I’m missing something spectacular on the field. Wednesdays can be awesome. Please, Jason Vargas, make it super sweet!

 

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