So this evening I had originally planned to go to Safeco to see the Orioles; but then last Thursday’s Rainiers game was announced and it was either watch history or watch one of my favorite teams who will continue to visit Safeco and will in fact visit one more time this year. Obviously, I decided on history; but would still prefer to be at the park rather than watching this game from my couch.
I went to the Red Sox game yesterday with Eric, and while I was indeed surrounded by Red Sox fans (I chose to wear Mariners gear, a rarity for me; but since Eric was wearing his Pedro Martinez jersey, I wore my JJ Putz), but they were very nice Red Sox fans, and we even traded light chatter here and there throughout the game. Nobody was excessively drunk or loud or obnoxious to me or the handful of Mariners fans sitting in section 182. Outside of the fact that I neglected to bring sunglasses because I was assured by the weather report that it was not supposed to be nice at all, and outside of the Mariners losing thanks to Eric Wedge putting Brandon League into another very high leverage situation, I had a decent time. Oh, and I ate way too much, but that’s a story for a different time. Suffice to say, if I never see another sweet potato fry, it might be too soon.
The Brandon League thing is just…sad. That is the only word I have for it. I was able to get a few photos of League sitting in the dugout after surrendering the winning hits to Boston, and I had to delete them. Aside from the fact that they weren’t as clear as I would have liked, they were just too depressing to keep. After he was pulled from the hill in favor of Lucas Luetge, League walked back to the dugout. One of the staff patted him on the back as they passed each other, but that was really the only communication League received from anyone in the dugout. He said on the lower part of the bench, and just…sat there, looking exhausted and dazed. I didn’t see anyone talk to him or even come near him. The dugout is a public space more or less -there are certainly people sitting closer to it with a cleaner line of sight than I usually have – but I felt like I was seeing something I shouldn’t. It felt like a little piece of me died, seeing that kind of disappointment and frustration in a person. I don’t know why Wedge put him in there. I think a lot of fans wonder why. Had he left Wilhelmsen in for an inning or two more, and the Sox not scored that run, maybe the offense would have woken up a bit and taken advantage of Vicente Padilla in the bottom of the 10th. Maybe, what if, perhaps…all I know is that League certainly seems to have a better time when the pressure isn’t on, and because his trade value has pretty much vanished, I would imagine, I don’t know what his future holds for him. I also know that as a fan, getting angry or upset about it doesn’t do any good; because I can guarantee you that nobody is as angry or upset about it as Brandon League. Whatever the problem is, I hope the flame is just flickering in the wind and not about to be extinguished. I know baseball players don’t last forever, I just hate watching that happen, if that is what this is.
On a happier note from yesterday’s contest, if you haven’t seen this already – and I would hope you have – Munenori Kawasaki tried to keep things light during the low-scoring game by mimicking the dancing groundskeepers dance moves during a break in play. I may have been exaggerating a little when I said to someone online yesterday that Kawasaki is my favorite Mariner ever, but he certainly does rank up in the top five, and he hasn’t even been here for an entire season. I just love that he is living the dream here in Seattle; hell, I love that he even has a dream here in Seattle! Lookout Landing is of course on top of the .gifs of Kawasaki; I am of course not on top of anything news-y.
Chris Davis just took Hisashi Iwakuma over the wall to put the Orioles ahead. I didn’t need to read it, but Matthew’s breakdown of how this series is projected to go is not surprising. And in the end, this is one of those series where I’m just not hurt either way because the Ms are not in contention this year. If there was more of a chance of playoffs, I might be more inclined to care that we weren’t hitting and that Steve Delabar was just brought back up, and that George Sherrill was out early, and Franklin Gutierrez may never see Mariners playing time again at the rate things are going. As it is, I’m just going to sit here and watch two teams I like play a game of baseball. Getting upset over this is not going to change a thing. So as not to end on too sour a note, here is a picture of Brendan Ryan’s facial hair getting sassy at Will Middlebrooks.
EDIT: WOW 7th and 8th innings tonight. Holy home runs!