My job is still pounding me into the ground, and I am still struggling with work/life/whatever balance. It probably won’t be remedied any time soon, but as a result, I chose to go for a walk on Alki last night, rather than stay indoors watching the Mariners play the White Sox in a first of three. Houston Astros series are also really hard to take, and this past weekend’s was no exception, so I felt like going outside (but still keeping an eye on things, because it’s necessary) and taking in the sunset and the sea air and just being outdoors away from most social media and the TV. It was nice. When we got back to the car, though, I turned on the radio to what turned out to be the top of the 9th (and then quickly the bottom of it) of the game, and it was just barely past 9PM! When the Mariners started to load up the bases, I was just pulling in the driveway, and we got out of the car and ran into the house to change the channel. You know, just in case. And there were men on after a Kyle Seager RBI single, and there was a run plated after an entire game of being shut out, and as Adam Lind stepped to the plate, the broadcast immediately reviewed the last time Lind was up in the bottom of the 9th with a run deficit. A Wade LeBlanc start against the Cardinals, a game I was at. I didn’t believe what happened then, and I still don’t believe what happened last night, because they were the same exact thing; an Adam Lind walkoff dinger. Maaaan is baseball weird sometimes.
So keeping that in mind – and because I’m a little tired and don’t feel like going anywhere – I stayed at home and watch game 2 of this series. As I started writing, the score was 1-0 on a Brett Lowrie solo home run, and it was the top of the 4th. So things could’ve been worse. Newly-barbered Wade Miley was gracefully holding his own against the Chicago White Sox at that point.
I went outside to pick some beets from the garden on a commercial break, got distracted by the state of things due to neglect of the yard, and missed Robinson Cano’s tater to tie the score. Figures, right? But a tied game is certainly better than the alternative, and hey, I got some weeds pulled as well. In the top of the 5th, Miley got Todd Frazier to foul out over the stands and third baseline, and Kyle Seager went for it, tumbling over the wall and into a small family of fans; and when I say “small family” I mean three children. Everyone lived to tell the tale, and Seager got the first out of the inning. The second out went to Robbie Cano, and Miley did battle with Avisail Garcia prior to giving him a base. Garcia got a broken (or thrown) bat single, and Dioner Navarro (who is in Chicago now?! When did that happen??) eventually struck out swinging to finish that half of the inning.
Leonys Martin was caught out at first, then Daniel Robertson popped up to shallow center, and the ball bounced before JB Shuck could catch it, even though he put forth a good effort. Shuck wound up somersaulting on the grass, righted himself to get a glove on the ball as Robertson attempted to get a double, and threw the ball to first base; but the throw went wild, and Robertson used the error to take his double anyway. Shawn O’Malley got a walk, and the White Sox pitching coach paid a visit to the hill to speak with starter Jose Quintana. Quintana’s pitch count was climbing into the 80s; he remained in the game to face Franklin Gutierrez. Gutz sacrificed a ball to the right fielder, and Robertson tagged up and moved to third. O’Malley stayed put, and with two outs, Robinson Cano stepped back up to the plate. But you know how it is with the Mariners sometimes; Cano collected two strikes before swinging at a ball low and away. Men on, opportunity squandered.
Adam Eaton was called out on strikes in the top of the 6th, and let everyone know he didn’t like it; the microphones everywhere picked up his very animated “Fuck!” as he walked back to the dugout. Tim Anderson broke his bat into two large splinters for a single, and Jose Abreu followed that up by grounding into a double play. The White Sox made Wade Miley look pretty good this evening. The Mariners were up then, and Nelson Cruz swatted a 94MPH fastball thrown inside to shallow left field for a base. Dae-Ho Lee – who has been having some trouble lately – was strikeout number 7 on the game for Jose Quintana. Chris Iannetta walked, and the Quintana got another mound visit from his pitching coach. He then loaded the bases by plunking Leonys Martin in the back of the elbow; on his arm guard, but you could hear it over the broadcast and it sent Martin to the ground briefly before he took his base. Ouch. With the bases loaded, Daniel Robertson flew out for the final out, after taking a ball that was very far outside.
Melky Cabrera started off the 7th inning by hitting a solo shot into the visitor’s bullpen, a hit that was caught by LHP Zach Duke, who waved his hat at the crowd. Tom Wilhelmsen started to warm up in the Mariners’ side of the ‘pen. Miley allowed two runners on, and that was it, after 6.1 innings, our starter was relieved of his duties. And then the wheels came off the bus. The Sox small balled us into another run on Wilhelmsen’s watch, score 3-1 Chicago.
Hat-tipper Duke came in to relieve Quintana, and the remainder of the game was uneventful, outside of a challenged call against Dae-Ho Lee at first, where Jose Abreu tagged but did not actually tag Lee for an out. Replay showed that the only part of the glove that might have touched Lee was a stray lacing, but if that’s the criteria being used by MLB, that seems problematic. The call was sustained amid boos from the 25,000+ people in attendance. Joaquin Benoit worked slowly as usual in the top of the 9th, and then gave up an HR to Todd Frazier with men on, tipping the score to a disappointing 5-1 in Chicago’s favor. And then 6-1 in Chicago’s favor, while I was just proofing my tenses on this post. This last run came in under the watch of Mariners reliever David Rollins. Carson Fulmer came in, wiggled his glove around (this is apparently a thing he does during his delivery), and took two outs from the Ms almost immediately. Adam Lind came into an extremely low leverage situation, and leveraged his way into a groundout at first.
This was the game I chose to stay home and write about. The Mariners are now 47-47.
Well, Felix is back on the mound for tomorrow’s 12.40PM start, so that should be a positive, right? Right?!