Number 21

I am not reading anything else about yesterday’s failure to launch. Occasionally when I’m not completely sure of what I want to say, I take time to comb over other blogs and news articles and see if anything analysis-wise piques my interest, or maybe shakes me out of any shock I might feel after a game like yesterday’s. But I’m not going to do that this time.

So it was a disappointing game. I don’t know if I would have felt the same way if I had actually been there, but I was sitting in an office 21 stories above the street, and less than a mile away, listening to events unfold on the radio; so it was really just depressing, not exciting, hearing at-bat after at-bat against Phil Humber wasted. Humber threw less than 100 pitches over 9 innings. I didn’t see this game, and work got in the way of me trying to multi-task as far as truly hearing the radio a lot, but based on that information, I would assume that the Mariners batting lineup were just hacking at anything that was thrown to them. The fact that Humber gave up no walks further drives that home. So regardless of what Eric Wedge said during this interview, the fact of the matter is, our batting order lacked discipline in a way that I’m not sure I’ve ever seen before. Humber wasn’t doing anything original. He threw 97 pitches, about 2/3 of those for strikes. That’s pretty normal. I know I’ve made jokes about this in the past, but was this really a game that was a victory for Humber, or was it simply yet another defeat in a long list of Mariners defeats? Maybe you could say a little of both, but I’m not so sure that’s true.

If I had been there, I probably would have cheered Humber on towards number 21. Or at least sat in stunned silence as it happened and waited around after the game to take a lot of pictures, like so many other people did. It was history being made, after all, and it’s fun to see baseball history being made, right?

I really don’t want to get down on the Mariners this year. Not yet. But so far I feel like I’ve been more annoyed with baseball than having fun with it. And the fact that I am annoyed makes me more even more annoyed, until I am this massive ball of annoyance, and then I just don’t feel like I’m having fun anymore. This team is a team that I don’t hate. I’ve even been liking Chone Figgins so far this year, and that’s treading some dangerous waters. I don’t even really mind Miguel Olivo, not technically. But we can’t keep walking down this path.

In the last post I made, I was talking about being apprehensive about this season. I don’t know if it’s just what’s happened to me so far with the home opener, or if it’s what I’ve been reading online or talking about with people in daily life, but I am getting the distinct feeling that a lot of fans are just as concerned about the season – this early in the season – as I am. Even though this past Friday was my do-over night, there was just something about the vibe in the stadium that felt a little off to me. In spite of the loss on Friday, I had a pretty decent time, stayed warm, even got some fish and chips, and Tom seemed to enjoy himself too. But the general atmosphere of everything seemed sort of off to me. There is something I can’t quite place my finger on, but watching the Mariners play is sort of becoming a chore.

Yeah, it was only one game yesterday. And the day before. And the day before that. It is hard to gain perspective when perspective involves so many losses so soon. So I just went to the standings listings, hoping to gain some perspective. Here it is. Maybe I shouldn’t be so down on the Ms after all. I mean, we’re level with Oakland, and we’re ahead of the Angels by a half a game. If the Angels lose to the Orioles and we can pull one out today against John Danks…oh, dear….

I don’t want to end this on a bad note, so I have some pictures from Friday night’s game, a game during which Tom and I never made it to our seats because we were watching things from the Lookout Landing over left field, then towards the end from the main concourse over right. I never had to put on all three jackets, and the sunset was beautiful even if the game being played on the field might not have been. I talked to a White Sox fan who shortly lamented the loss of Mark Buehrle to the Marlins, then echoed my general sentiments about the transitional phase of the Sox to a group of younger players. It was a good night, really.

Hector Noesi in the wind up.

An as-yet unidentified Sox player getting a small lead on Justin Smoak.

Brendan Ryan and AJ Pierzynski, who I think I’m just going to lay off of for a while. I am not a fan, but he doesn’t deserve most of my ire, and I’m not entirely sure why I harbor any ill will against him. Rumors, maybe.

Miguel Olivo, hacking. The ball is already in Pierzynski’s glove.

Dustin Ackley, taking.  I have seen more Ackley jerseys at the stadium already this year, which makes me very happy. I hope he lives up to the amount of love that fans have already started to give him.

Hisashi Iwakuma getting ready to fire one off. I was happy to see him in the game.

Jesus Montero, getting ready to swing.

Ball in the dirt.

I appreciate any patience readers can provide with me while I get the feel for the new camera. It’s coming along nicely though.

Tomorrow, if the weather holds up, I am going to see a baseball game. My original plan was to drive myself and my friend Justin up to Everett to see what I thought was a UW Huskies game against a smaller Seattle college. Justin is finishing up his degree at UW currently, so I thought it would be fun. It turns out, however, that I got the schools mixed up, and it’s actually the Cougars, not the Huskies that will be playing up at Everett Memorial Stadium. I got a bit of scorn via text message from Justin, but that is what you get from someone whose state college days are long behind her, and who has a trade degree from Edmonds Community. All was not lost, though, and it turns out that the Tacoma Rainiers are playing a game against the Fresno Grizzlies. I wish it was the Las Vegas 51s, but beggars/choosers/ etc. So hopefully the weather stays nice and I will get my first visit to the newly-renovated Cheney Stadium.

In the meantime, however, the weather is nice today, so I’m going to spend it outside some, maybe watching, but most likely  listening to a little Mariners baseball, and enjoying what are supposed to be above-70s temperatures. I will look forward to my next visit to Safeco Field, which is happening on the 4th of May, Justin Smoak Train Night! Mostly, I will just continue hoping for the best for my Ms and believing that things will get better. It’s still early in the season, after all.


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2 Responses to Number 21

  1. Blaine Wright says:

    Megan, by the end of the game I was rooting for a perfect game. I mean, what would one hit or walk have done for us at that point?

    So far the season has gone about like I thought it would, though I thought Ackley would be hitting better, around .300 or over, and stealing more bases.

    I think this is another rebuilding year and I don’t know why people expected the Mariners to be contenders. I also think that if some of the young players don’t come through by the end of the year with their bats, we could see some trades next off-season even if it means trading one of our young pitching prospects.

    My last comment is simply that Olivo is bad, but he’s not the reason we’re losing. Also I’m not convinced that Jaso is a great upgrade either defensively or offensively compared to Olivo. But the games where we have a DH hitting around .150 just make me realize how bad we are.

    This last game felt like we swung at everything outside the strike zone and took everything that was over the plate. Everytime a hitter showed patience by not swinging, it turned into a strike anyway.

    Please take lots of pictures in Tacoma. I’ve never seen the old or new stadium. Your pictures really bring the blog to life.

    • Megan Shear says:

      Oh yeah, sure – don’t get me wrong, the no-hitter thing was entertaining, but the fact that we’ve only won one game out of the past 5 we’ve played is a bit discouraging. I think that things would have been different had I been AT the stadium. It’s just hard to generate that kind of excitement after I just woke up, I guess.

      I’m not blaming Olivo, but I know a lot of people are. When things start off like this, people are looking for a singular thing to pin blame on, and right now it’s him. And when you’ve started to notice a player’s weaknesses, it’s really hard to get out of that rut of noticing even the smallest infraction, something you might let another player get away with.

      And I will definitely take photos in Tacoma; I am reaaaally hoping the weather holds. Thank you for the compliment. 🙂

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