Dodgers Take Series, Mariners Make History

During Friday’s game last week, I should have been sitting here with the computer and GameDay open, ready for anything. But there is only one series this year in interleague play that truly interests me, and it wasn’t the Dodgers. It probably should have been. Coming into this series, I really wasn’t sure what to expect. The Dodgers have the best record in all of baseball, and I was very much aware of this going in; but we’ve taken series from other good teams this year, so why not LA? So instead of planting myself in front of the TV, I invited some friends over, and we had dinner with them and chatted, rather than paying full attention to the game. Like in baseball, sometimes it’s the luck of the draw. I chose poorly. It took six members of our pitching staff to no-hit Los Doyers, but if my memory serves, the event of combined no-hitting has only happened 10 times in all of baseball’s history. The Mariners offense, for their part, got on run in. That probably should have been a harbinger for the rest of the weekend, but I’ve been trying to take a strictly wait-and-see attitude due to the nature of our away games on the last outing.

Yesterday’s game was really fun to be at, and really fun to watch for at least one inning. Sometimes you have to take what you can get. The weather was kind of that hot/cold thing Seattle does with the sun jumping in and out of the clouds, so one minute I was regretting not bringing a jacket, the next I wanted to peel off the two thin layers I was wearing and go play in a sprinkler. Another hazard of the day game, I suppose.

I met my friend Cynthia near the entrance to The Pen and wandered around to see what we could see. It was Little League Day yesterday, so there were a lot of kids wandering around with parents and chaperones in tiny copies of big league uniforms, or the unis of whatever city-supported team they were part of. There was no batting practice, and the field was roped off so that everyone could walk around the warning track and take pictures. During this time, a familiar face with two tiny companions could be seen playing on the grass, while fans walked around them, seemingly oblivious to their presence…

And while that was happening, another familiar face was taking some throwing practice in the grass a short ways away…

We went to grab some lunch and by the time we came back, Blake Beavan had started warming up as well.

And since I decided on the fly to see what kind of close-ups I could get, you get this photo, too…

Miguel Olivo was catching, of course, but the only complaint I have about that as far as photography is that I already have a ton of photos of him, and none of either John Jaso or Jesus Montero.

And at that point, I got a little crowded out by autograph seekers and other fans. I sometimes wish I was more aggressive as far as standing my ground; but I have a good camera, and most of the people around me yesterday were attempting to get shots with their cell phones. It’s much easier for me to get decent photos than I would imagine it is for them. So out of the kindness of my heart and a very strong innate desire to avoid confrontation, we went up to our seats after the National Anthem was not so much sung as belted out by a tenor-voiced fellow who surely must have been part of an opera somewhere.

As we arrived in our seats, the ceremonial first pitch was thrown, a local college softball team that had won a recent championship was introduced, the kid chosen to say it said “Play ball!”, and the Mariners came streaming out of the dugout to the strains of Soundgarden.

And we were surrounded by Dodgers fans…

This was taken right before Kyle Seager swung for the right field seats, in what would be one of our only two runs in yesterday’s game;

Of course, everything fell apart right after that. Beavan just lost it (if he ever had it to begin with, poor guy), and the Dodgers batting lineup gave the Mariners a talking-to about what happens when you have no control over your pitches. Andre Ethier in particular, really sat us down and gave us a stern lecture about pitching a 91MPH fastball to him after you’ve already thrown 50 pitches in less than two innings. After that happened, Cynthia and I decided to console ourselves with some frozen yogurt and Dippn’ Dots. The Dodgers are why I’m fat. Jerks.

The Mariners situation did not improve. Chad Billingsley pitched a solid 7 innings, allowing us only two hits. The innings pitched by the Mariners on Game Day look like a really needlessly complicated math problem. Two innings here, a partial inning there, ERAs all up in the fours and fives…it just wasn’t good. A little work in the 9th against Shawn Tolleson was fancy and looked like the Mariners had finally shown up to play baseball, but it was too little too late, and we lost to a chorus of Dodger fans cheering and giving their team a standing ovation, as they rightly should. I chalked it up to a day at the park, and took my slowly-getting-pinker face to my car and drove home.

I was going to post a picture of Miguel Olivo swinging, but it appears I have used up my media space for this site, which is cause for alarm, as it appears that an upgrade is horrendously expensive. I will check into it and hopefully all will be fixed by the time I can bring pictures here next. Not a great surprise for a Monday, I don’t think…

I am not really looking forward to this upcoming series with the Padres, but it will be nice to get back to the park again on Thursday, my next scheduled trip. I plan to spend today doing some yardwork, listening to some ESPN, and grabbing a friend from the airport later. It’s unfortunate that we lost this series, but really cool that history was made, and of course we just “reset” tomorrow at 7pm against San Diego. Happy Monday!

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