Sunday, August 29, 2004


If someone had gone to the ballpark today and stayed there from the first pitch to the end of the second game, that person would have been at the park for just short of 7.5 hours. That, my friends, is a looooong time. It didn't help that the first game took forever and that the second game went extra innings.

Once again, Bobby Madritsch's turn had come up in the rotation, as he was once again leaned upon to save the bullpen on the heels of the six innings it had thrown in the first game of the doubleheader. Also, one game is still in the works for Sunday, and the Mariners probably need some arms to be rested for that game, with the off day mercifully coming on Monday.

Bobby held up his end of the bargain. The Mariner bats did not. Not early enough for Madritsch to get a win, at least.

And as my complete aside for the night, I hate the computer at this house. My six-year-old Win98 piece of crap that I had back at school gave me less trouble than this supposedly better three-year-old WinXP thingy. I could try to tell a long story about this, but I'll just say that I've typed the bulk of this recap THREE TIMES. Given the usual lengths of my recaps, that takes a long-ass time. Multiply that by three, and you've got what I've gone through tonight. And Notepad doesn't give me cool shortcuts for bold/italicize/link.

TOP 1ST -- terrible inning
It looked bleak for Madritsch at the start. A 23-pitch first inning indicated this, as a single-double-double combination plated two runs to start, and Joe Randa scurried home from third on an obligatory Miguel Olivo passed ball on ball four to Abraham Nunez (KC 3-0). Angel Berroa then singled before Alberto Castillo bounced into a weird 5-4 double play.

BOTTOM 1ST -- come on, y'all
Jimmy "Pedro" Serrano has his way wit the top of the Mariner lineup, getting Ichiro (whiff), Randy Winn, and Raul Ibanez in order.

TOP 2ND -- decent inning
Madritsch allows only the leadoff single to Ruben Gotay, who is eventually doubled off on a DeJesus 4-6-3 GIDP to end the inning.

BOTTOM 2ND -- come on, y'all
Bret Boone gets a one-out single, then lays down the beach blanket until Bucky runs out there with his mitt during the changeover.

TOP 3RD -- decent inning
Madritsch has his 3rd inning look a lot like his second. His only baserunner (Joe Randa) reaches on an infield single, but is erased from the basepaths on the next play, a 4-6-3 double play off the bat of Matt Stairs.

BOTTOM 3RD -- minimal damage
The damage here was all with two outs. Ichiro legged out an infield single and stole second on the 3-0 pitch. Winn walked on the next pitch, rendering the stolen base somewhat moot. Ichiro reached third on a wild pitch to Ibanez, and scored on Raul's single (KC 3-1). Bucky flew out to center to end the inning.

TOP 4TH -- fighting out of jam
Granted, the jam here was all with two out. Castillo drew a walk and Gotay was beaned. Madritsch got Alexis Gomez to whiff and end the inning.

BOTTOM 4TH -- minimal damage
Nothing here except that Jolbert Cabrera hit a two-out solo smash to left (KC 3-2). No runs would be scored for a long time, as pitching was the name of this game.

TOP 5TH -- decent inning
Madritsch weathered the leadoff walk to DeJesus, who was eventually nailed by Olivo trying to nab second. Madritsch cut down Desi Relaford swinging and got Randa to fly out to Spiezio in foul ground.

BOTTOM 5TH -- come on, y'all
Ichiro and Winn hit back-to-back singles with one out. Ibanez fouled off seven pitches (six with a full count) en route to a 12-pitch at-bat that resulted in a lineout to rightfield. Bucky flew out in foul ground to the first baseman.

TOP 6TH -- 1-2-3
In his easiest inning yet, Madritsch mowed down Stairs (flyout), Nunez (whiff), and Berroa (popout to second) in order.

BOTTOM 6TH -- ho, hum
Dennys Reyes took over for Serrano, who had thrown 96 pitches and was in line for the win. Reyes mowed down Bret Boone swinging, and then Scott Spiezio somehow bunted himself aboard, only to catch the front end of a Cabrera 4-6-3 double-play ball.

TOP 7TH -- decent inning
Madritsch, coming into the inning with 93 pitches thrown, allowed a Castillo leadoff single. Olivo flashed the arm once again, nailing Castillo trying to steal second. Madritsch took care of the rest, catching Gotay looking and getting Gomez to whiff once again.

BOTTOM 7TH -- ho, hum
Reyes mowed down Olivo, Ramon Santiago, and Ichiro (whiff) in order.

TOP 8TH -- 1-2-3
Madritsch ended his night with his easiest inning. DeJesus flew out, Relaford was caught looking, and Randa bounced out to third. Madritsch finished very strong on a night where it started off pretty grim. He left the game behind and on the hook for a loss if the Mariners failed to come up with any runs. His line: 8 innings, 3 runs, 7 hits, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts, 115 pitches. Everyone hates walks, sure, but the career high in strikeouts was definitely a plus for Bobby tonight. What happened to Bobby's walks? One was erased on a double play, one was stranded, and one was caught stealing. Madritsch faced three batters in each inning except the 1st and 4th. Of course, only a couple of those 3-batter innings were 1-2-3, as many had runners getting nailed or double plays.

BOTTOM 8TH -- I hate this team
Randy Winn bounced a ball to Relaford at third, who made an errant throw to first. Winn stood at first and watched Raul Ibanez go down swinging after being ahead 3-0. With Bucky up, Winn apparently was picked off of first, but time had been called before the move was made, and everything was put back where it was. Play resumed, and the same damn thing happened. There goes your tying run, Bobby. Bucky whiffed to end the inning.

TOP 9TH -- decent inning
Against the Royals, things like a decent inning involving Shigetoshi Hasegawa are possible. Shig allowed only a two-out Berroa double in an otherwise nondescript inning.

BOTTOM 9TH -- minimal damage
Madritsch would thankfully be taken off the hook in the 9th. Boone led off with a double, and didn't try to take off for third this time like he did in the first game of the doubleheader. Boone pulled up a lawn chair while Bloomquist came through with a clutch whiff. Cabrera then doubled Boone home to tie the game at 3-3. Olivo was put on base (memories of two home runs the night before were etched in Tony Pena's mind). Edgar then flew out to short and Ichiro was caught looking.

TOP 10TH -- decent inning
More Hasegawa, more pins and needles. Still, Hasegawa did much like he did the inning before, only allowing one baserunner, but not having it get nito scoring position this time. Yes, 'twas a harmless one-out Guiel single.

BOTTOM 10TH -- come on, y'all
Jaime Cerda comes in and cuts through Winn, Ibanez, and Bucky in 1-2-3 fashion. Yes, kids, that's extra inning baseball.

TOP 11TH -- 1-2-3
Cha Seung Baek, recalled just hours before, became the pitcher of record, and cut through Randa/Stairs/Nunez with ease.

BOTTOM 11TH -- ho, hum
Bloomquist drew a one-out walk and moved to second on a two-out single by Olivo. Lopez whiffed to end the inning. The Mariners had been Cerda'd.

TOP 12TH -- decent inning
Baek allowed a one-out single to Castillo, who rolled out the Barcalounger and watched Gotay whiff and Guiel get caught looking.

BOTTOM 12TH -- some damage
Yes, it was Matt Kinney's turn to enter the game, you know, the guy that broke Justin Leone's fingers. Ichiro legged out an infield single. Winn got a hold of a 2-2 pitch and drove it out and down the line to rightfield (SEA 5-3). Ballgame.

Hey, the Mariners sweep a doubleheader. At least there's a tiny bit of something to cheer about. I was going to say Ichiro didn't do much, but it looks to me like he had a quiet 3-for-6 outing, which is quite good for him. When he got aboard in the 12th, he became the first Major League player to have three 50-hit months in his career. You definitely can't argue the Japanese League-against-MLB card for this record, this one's fair and square no matter how you look at it.

Gameball: Cha Seung Baek. He gets called up, pitches two pretty quick and painless innings, and he gets his first Major League win. 2 innings, no runs, 1 hit, no walks, 2 strikeouts, and 21 pitches for the Korean.

Goat: Bucky Jacobsen. 0-for-5 with two whiffs. Bucky got both sides of the fence today, with the big mash in the first game, and this 0-fer in the second game.

Gobble. Franklin. Tomorrow.

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