Saturday, May 01, 2004
Here it goes. Who would you rather have as your #1 starter in October?
Jack Morris or Dave Stewart?
Leave your comments in the box below. You can't go wrong with either of those guys.
Anyway, thinking about that got me to thinking, why not get a two-choice thing and put it to the readers? Hence, this...
I'm going to call it Either/Or. I'll put out two choices up, you can pick one, and for any reason at all. You can say "that guy had better stats," or "I just hate that guy," and you can fill the comment box to your heart's content one way or the other. In a perfect world, it's fun interaction. If it doesn't fly at all, then it may or may not come back, depending on our whims.
Now, your first edition of Either/Or...
Rob Deer or Gorman Thomas?
Let the hijinks begin!!
I saw bits and parts of the game, and I was waiting most of the game for the Tigers to at least tie it, which they did. I was watching the TV broadcast (where the graphics people were not posting the score constant in the early innings, which really threw me off) when they brought up something I never knew about Jason Johnson. They pointed out the square thing that is attached to the back of his belt. It's an insulin pump which regulates Johnson's blood sugar. A catheter apparently runs through to his thigh. My only thought: "that's gotta hurt like hell." All that leg motion...I don't know how it can't hurt like hell. Maybe that's why Johnson has kind of a pause in his motion at the height of the leg kick. Anyway, just one thing I didn't know about Jason Johnson, and I don't know if I could play and deal with that at the same time.
As an aside, I learned from KING-5 tonight that apparently Lou Piniella has Type II diabetes. Also mentioned was that he quit smoking cold turkey before the season. Get well, Lou, or as well as you can possibly be with Type II diabetes.
To the game, how good were the starting pitchers tonight? Both were great, though Freddy Garcia was the better pitcher. Freddy was throwing the heavy ball all night, throwing 114 pitches over 8 innings. Nitpickers will hack away at his four walks, and I could be one of them, but it's too late at night for that.
Julio Mateo only pitched a third of an inning, and as I've brought up here before, had tons of experience last year in long relief facing hitters from both sides of the plate and was quite effective. So why not leave him in? I'm never going to feel good with Mike Myers or Ron Villone on the mound, and there's nothing that can be done about this until both are off the team.
Ichiro actually did something, leading off the game with the home run. What did he do in his other four at-bats? I'll let Jeff tell you. The offense once again managed to screw Freddy, though a Raul fly ball that went over the fence bailed the Mariners out. Seriously, did anyone think that was a home run on contact? That looked like less of a home run than the game-winner that Eric Chavez hit inside the LF foul pole off Kazu Sasaki in Oakland, probably in 2002.
Gameball: Freddy Garcia. Who else? Eight innings, 1 run, 4 hits, 4 strikeouts, 4 walks, 114 pitches; a strong start.
Goat: John Olerud. 0-for-5, a strikeout, and he strands two. Just when we thought he might have a chance at turning the corner...
Franklin. Bonderman. Tomorrow.
Month hits (change)
December 6800 (up ~66%)
January 7900 (up ~16%)
February 5420 (down ~31.4%)
March 7130 (up ~31.5%)
April ~7100 (down ~0.42%) (stat counter blows up for over a day)
Into the very merry month of May we go...
Friday, April 30, 2004
Thank you, Bob, for showing some fire. We salute you.
So what if it was Raul Ibanez who hit a 2-run home run in the top of the 10th.
So fricking what.
The fact of the matter is, Freddy Garcia got screwed again. WHERE WAS THAT POWER WHEN FREDDY WAS ON THE MOUND, RAUL??? C'mon folks, do you really expect David or I to give Raul any credit? That day will come if he can hit a home run that MATTERS. Say, Game 7 of the World Series?
Freddy pitches 8 strong innings, giving up just one run on four hits. Way to go, Freddy. His ERA is now down to 2.27. It's a shame that this inept offense can't buy him a win. The LOOGY, or in my words, a POS, Mike Myers, gets the victory instead. It's unjust.
Oh, and Bob Melvin got ejected. That's great. I can't wait to see it on Baseball Tonight. He probably made a fool out of himself, but hey, the man got ejected. Encouraging.
The Mariners end the month of April with an 8-15 record. Ryan Franklin vs Pasco native Jeremy Bonderman tomorrow afternoon at 1:05 Pacific.
Freddy deserves a drink or two tonight. No word on whether he and Carlos Guillen will hit up the Motor City tonight...
Thursday, April 29, 2004
I was finally able to log in for the first time in a couple days and see how many hits we were getting, etc. Seeing as to how it was nearly 9pm, I correctly assumed we'd be up somewhere around 190-200 hits for this time of the day. I logged in and checked the totals, and we were at 32 hits for the day. Thirty-two??!!
I looked through the timetables to see what the heck was going on. There was a 29-hour gap in the timetables, which greatly detracts from our totals. There was another one-hour gap in there somewhere, so with 30 missing hours, and with the 240 or so hits we were averaging per day in the month, I'll tack on 300 to our hit totals after tomorrow night.
Ah, the wonders of free hosting, etc. This was quite the gaffe though, something I'd never experienced using the stat counter since last November.
And we're STILL getting Google searched by people wondering whether the LeBron James PowerAde ad is fake or not. IT'S FAKE!!
Anyway, this post is mostly for Jeremy and I as we wade through our monthly hit totals. Go about your Thursday nights, please.
Eric DuBose not surprisingly continued his dominance over Mariner hitting that reaches back to the stretch run of last summer. Joel Pineiro was tagged for five runs, two of which were scored by the bullpen, and zero runs would have scored in that 4th inning if Bret Boone cleanly fielded the double play ball off Miguel Tejada's bat.
All in all, just another day of a Mariner starting pitcher getting screwed, and the offense not coming back, or at least not coming back when it mattered.
On other days, the starting pitching sucks, and the lead is rendered insurmountable by the offense. Not today, though.
top 1 -- Ichiro 2-0...3-1 BB; Aurilia 1st-pitch 8; Boone 2-0...2-2...full 1B LF; Edgar 2-0...2-1 6-4-3 DP
bot 1 -- Roberts 1-1 1B RF; Mora 0-2...1-2 broken-bat 1B LF; Tejada 0-2...1-2 swing K; Palmeiro 0-1 U3; J Lopez 2-0...2-2 look K
>> So, Ichiro leads off with a walk and doesn't take off. Dave Niehaus thought he might take off on 2-2, but he hasn't caught on yet. Edgar hit into a double play, and nothing happened. Joel Pineiro showed some toughness in the first, letting the first two aboard before slicing through Miguel Tejada, Raf Palmeiro, and Javy Lopez.
top 2 -- Spiezio 1-0 8; Ibanez 1-2...2-2 4-3; Cabrera 1-0 5-3
bot 2 -- Gibbons 1-2 swing K; Surhoff 1-0 6-3; Matos 0-2 1B CF; Bigbie 1-2...2-2 swing K
>> The Mariner offense did absolutely nothing. Pineiro slipped only once, allowing the two-out hit to Luis Matos.
top 3 -- Davis 0-1 3; Winn 2-0...2-1 9; Ichiro 3-1...full 6-3
bot 3 -- Roberts 1-1 1B CF; Mora 0-1 2B LCF gap (weird route Ibanez?); Tejada 1-1 Boone (muff) IF 1B (BAL 1-0); Palmeiro 0-1 1B RF scoreboard (BAL 2-0); J Lopez 0-1 E5 (BAL 3-0); Gibbons 0-2 swing K; Surhoff 1-1 8 (backward!!) (BAL 4-0); Matos 2-2 swing K
>> The Mariner offense once again did absolutely nothing. Unlike the first inning, Joel couldn't get away with letting the first two runners aboard, but he had no help from his teammates. Tejada hit what should have been a double-play ball to Bret Boone, but Boone slipped and muffed the ball as Brian Roberts scored. Palmeiro then nearly hit one out, scoring the second Baltimore run. The a ball off Javy Lopez' bat when square through the legs of Scott Spiezio at third. Frankly, I'm surprised Spiezio hadn't had a couple of those already. Rich Aurilia got his brutal play out of the way in the first few games, it seems like. Another run came in on a sacrifice fly that could have been a lot more, as Randy Winn got crossed on the BJ Surhoff ball and nearly had it fly over his head.
top 4 -- Aurilia 2-0...3-1 8; Boone 2-0...3-1...full swing K; Edgar 2-0 F9
bot 4 -- Bigbie 1-0 8; Roberts 2-0 1B CF; Mora 2-0...3-1 1B LF (Roberts out 7-6-2 at plate); Tejada 2-0...2-2 4-3
>> Eric DuBose reached the zenith of his performance here, as Edgar's flyout marked 10 straight Mariners he'd retired. The only positive in the 4th was the Ibanez/Aurilia/Davis relay play to gun down Brian Roberts at the plate. Its still 4-0 instead of 5-0!! Yaaayyy!! Ah, the joys of being a fan of the 2004 Mariners.
top 5 -- Spiezio 2-0...2-2...full BB (DAMN close); Ibanez 0-1 2B LF soft; Cabrera 2-0...2-1 4-3 (BAL 4-1); Davis 0-2...1-2 U3 (BAL 4-2); Winn 0-1 9
bot 5 -- Palmeiro 0-1 4-3; J Lopez 1-0 5-3; Gibbons 3-1 BB; Surhoff (sketchy 1-1 pickoff move) 2-1 5-3 (Spiezio nearly throws into RF)
>> Scott Spiezio probably should have struck out looking on a full count. Nonetheless, the Mariners went on with their "big inning," driving in two runs with the ever-potent RBI groundout. Two in scoring position with nobody out, and those two get in. I guess it's something. Scott Spiezio nearly threw a ball into rightfield when forcing out Jay Gibbons at second. It was the most sketchy day out of any of Spiezio's defense days as a Mariner.
top 6 -- Ichiro 1-0 5 (1-for-11 in series); Aurilia 0-2...full broken bat 4; Boone 0-2...1-2 swing K
bot 6 -- Matos 0-1 up box 1B CF; Bigbie 1-0 4-6-3 DP; Roberts 1st-pitch 4-3
>> The top of the Mariner order did absolutely nothing. Joel Pineiro got the help of a double-play ball to ward off the leadoff single by Matos.
top 7 -- Edgar 1-0 4; Spiezio 1-2...full BB; Ibanez 0-1 9; Cabrera 1st-pitch 1B CF; Davis 0-1 5-4 FC
bot 7 -- Mora 0-2 (PUTZ, MYERS WARMING)...2-2 1B LCF; Tejada 0-1 1B CF; MYERS IN; Palmeiro 2-2...full BB; PUTZ IN; J Lopez 0-2 FC 6-4 (no DP, BAL 5-2); VILLONE IN; Gibbons 0-1 1B CF (BAL 6-2); Surhoff 1-2...full BB; (JOSE BAUTISTA PR J LOPEZ) Matos 1-0 1B CF (BAL 8-2); Bigbie 0-2 look K; Roberts 1-0 1B LF (BAL 9-2) Matos run down 7-5-4-6-5
>> Spiezio drew a one-out walk and Jolbert Cabrera got aboard with two out. Bob Melvin didn't pinch-hit for Ben Davis, which may or may not be odd, depending on who you ask. Then again, it's the Mariner bench. How much better could it be? And you probably wouldn't send Dave Hansen up there against the lefty DuBose anyway. Pineior was trotted out there for the seventh. He gave up two singles and was yanked. If I were Joel, the last thing I'd want to see would be Mike Myers coming in after me with two of my runners on base. Myers didn't let Palmeiro get a hit or a homer, but that's because he walked him. Instead of being the LOOGY, Myers instead was the L0OGY (zero for letter O). JJ Putz came in, got ahead of Javy Lopez 0-2 and forced a ground ball, which wasn't quick enough for a double play, and the Orioles led by three. Putz was pulled for Ron Villone, and Villone lit the house afire, as he surrendered a triple-decker sandwich with singles as the bread/buns and walks inbetween. On the last single, the 9th Baltimore run scored and that weird 7-5-4-6-5 rundown play nailed Matos between 2nd and 3rd. What Melvin was doing with all the pitching changes in this inning, I'm just not really sure. It may or may not have made sense, but it seemed very extraneous.
top 8 -- RYAN IN; Winn 1-2...full...BB; Ichiro 1-2...(FC E3 Palmeiro off helmet, Tejada's cheek, BAL 9-3); LUIS LOPEZ IN SS; Aurilia 0-2...(1-2 close)...full BB (pitch was there); Boone 0-1 2B LF (BAL 9-5); (Niehaus' Ryan no-pitch win story) Edgar 2-2 look K (Edgar almost argues up/away); Spiezio 2-1 6-3; Ibanez 2-0...3-1...full swing K
bot 8 -- GUARDADO IN; Mora 0-2 shallow OF 4; L Lopez 3-0...full...7; Palmeiro 2-0 (Niehaus about the bat again)...3-1...full look K
>> The Mariners mounted yet another False Hope Comeback (TM), spurred by Winn's leadoff walk and Ichiro's almost-double-play ball that Palmeiro threw off Winn's helmet and off Tejada's cheek, forcing him out of the game. Winn scored on the play to bring the Mariners within six. Aurilia took a couple really close pitches that he probably should have struck out on, but he walked. Bret Boone roped a double down the line to drive in Ichiro and Aurilia. Dave Nieuahs told the story of how BJ Ryan managed to win a game a couple years ago without throwing a pitch. Edgar then mini-argued a called third strike, which he thought was high and away. Consider it makeup for that Aurilia at-bat. Spiezio bounced out and then Ibanez lost a favorable count to whiff. As for the bottom of the 8th...you can't convince me that Eddie Guardado "needed work" in a game down by four runs in the 8th. Ridiculous. I think it's a waste, bringing all these guys into a game for the second time in the series, with a weekend series at Detroit next on the bill. Granted, the Mariners haven't had too many save situations to get this guy into, but for me, this is one of those situations where you brought a billion arms into the game already...did you really need to bring another one in? Would it have killed Bob Melvin to have Ron Villone to throw just one more inning?
top 9 -- JULIO IN; Cabrera 1-2...1B RF; PH HANSEN 0-2 7; Winn 2-0 (indiff Cabrera 2nd) 4-pitch BB; Ichiro 2-0...2-1 7; Aurilia 2-2...(WP Cabrera 3rd) full swing K
>> Jorge Julio was having some control problems, but got through it. There was a leadoff single and a 4-pitch walk to Winn, but when you've got vintage Ichiro and a struggling Rich Aurilia, no sweat.
Gameball: Joel Pineiro. He didn't deserve this. Boone boots a ball (no error given though), Spiezio has one go through his legs, and it all goes to hell. Other than that, he pitched a pretty good game.
Goat: Ichiro. I had to. He was a spectacular 1-for-13 in the series, including an 0-for-4 walk in the park today. We've seen years where there's been First-Half Awesome Ichiro and Second-Half Brutal Ichiro, but this year, Ichiro seems to have skipped the Awesome part and went straight to sucking hard.
Well, y'all, the last day of April is tomorrow. The Mariners are 7-15. Is anyone looking for better uses of their time out there? Is anyone just being evil and looking to see which new way the Mariners will pick to lose that night's game?
Brutal overtold joke of the night: Heard on the PA at the Safe: "would the mother of nine kids please come to Guest Services and pick them up? They're beating the Mariners."
Scott Spiezio is batting .340. The Mariners' winning percentage is .318.
Garcia. Johnson. Tomorrow.
Garcia. Guillen. After the game. The Friday night crowd in downtown Detroit is forewarned...
[Edit ~5:35p -- To keep with the theme, Matt Thornton was sent down and Joseph Jason "Horse Hung Harry" Putz was recalled from Tacoma and pitched today. Just had to let you know.]
I'll leave the rest to Dave Pirner and crew, aka Soul Asylum...
They say misery loves company
We could start a company
And make misery, Frustrated Incorporated
I know just what you need
I might just have the thing
I know what you'd pay to see
Put me out of my misery
I'd do it for you, Would you do it for me?
We will always be busy, making misery
We could build a factory, and make misery
We'll create the cure, we made the disease
Frustrated Incorporated, Frustrated Incorporated
I know just what you need
I might just have the thing
I know what you'd pay to feel
Put me out of my misery
Suicide kings and drama queens
Forever after happily making misery
Did you satisfy your greed, get what you need
Was it only envy, so empty
I'd do it for you, would you do it for me?
---Soul Asylum "Misery"
In related news, I need somebody to shove.
-- About the ball not bouncing the Mariners' way, Bill thinks it's fake. The Mariners flat out aren't playing well enough to win. The league snuck up on them and they haven't tried to aggressively fill their weaknesses. This is what happens.
-- A series win in Baltimore was really important. The Orioles improved, but they're not elite. The 3rd inning was telltale. Pineiro pitched winning baseball. He could have given up 1 run going into the 7th. He looked great, but the team didn't help him. Boone kicked the Tejada double play ball, Spiezio had the ball through his legs...one run should have scored, but no more.
-- Taking umbrage with Ichiro is pretty fair right now. When he's not hitting like he's able to hit, he doesn't have a Plan B. Ichiro walked in the 1st, didn't run (steal), Edgar hit into a DP, inning over. He has to impose himself on the pitchers, take chances, and force pitchers to throw over a little more. The league knows where he likes the ball; they've caught on. He needs to be a more effective leadoff hitter with a higher OBP. He needs to get some help, info...we've got Julio Cruz in the booth (does he do Spanish radio telecasts?) and Paul Molitor in the dugout, so he could pick their brains...
-- (After Groz/Gas asked if Lou could reach Ichiro in a way that Melvin can't...) It's hard to put a finger on Ichiro's dropoff from first two years. The info I've heard is that the steal sign has been given and he hasn't gone. He tried to steal 3rd in the 8th with the game out of reach. He's not taking the game to people, and that's gotta improve. He doesn't think they have an answer in the leadoff spot (i.e., shakeup) if it's not Ichiro.
-- They need to get leads early, but Bill doesn't see them putting the game in motion when the game's close. They're really pressing to score runs. Boone's biggest swing isn't enough right now. He needs to stay within himself. He doesn't have enough support, so he whooshes. Bill thinks the starting pitching's gonna come around. If there's a move that can be made, Eddie would be much more valuable in an Arthur Rhodes-type role if Soriano closes. Then you'd move off Myers (cut him loose). What other choices do you have unless you make a trade with someone out in centerfield?
Krueger thinks Guardado should take a Rhodes role...I'd be more in line to put Soriano and/or Blackley in the rotation if Meche and/or Franklin fall off (in Meche's case, if he keeps doing what he's doing).
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
Kobe Bryant having the little girl sit in his lap (on his knee maybe) during the postgame press conference just SMACKS of what Jason Kidd did with his son...you know, back when he was trying to repair his image after that whole wife-beating incident? Point is, I know the jury's out on Kobe (a matter of fact, it hasn't even been selected yet), but this is just a blatant way to take advantage of the mere presence of a child in an attempt to piece together one's shambled image.
Kobe, you may have won in the series against Houston tonight, but you've already lost in the court of public opinion. And remember, Vanessa's going to want another fat rock if you're found guilty.
Total aside here, but I'm sensing that I use way too many run-on sentences in this here blog. Thoughts?
Most people out there do realize that it's going to take way more than one win (and a team-bonding dinner the night before) to show that the Mariners may be righting the ship.
Tonight, some familiar things showed up for the Mariners: the starter did great, but the offense and the bullpen didn't hold up their end of the bargain. Oh yeah, the Mariners stranded 18 baserunners.
Unlike the Rangers and Francisco Cordero did the night before holding a one-run lead in the bottom of the 9th with the bases loaded and nobody out, the Mariners and Shigetoshi Hasegawa got into a bases-juiced-and-no-outs scenario in the 8th, spearheaded by a Miguel Tejada double (that's what MVP players do...). Raf Palmeiro was walked so he couldn't do damage and also to put the double play in order. However, that doesn't do much if you walk the next hitter (Javy Lopez). Then came Jay Gibbons. I like Jay Gibbons as a player, and I've remembered him the last couple years as the bright spot on a couple of bad Oriole teams. You don't hit 23 bombs and drive in 100 runs last year by sucking. You probably do it with half your games in hitter-friendly Camden. Still, this guy's 27 (younger than Ibanez) and is making $2.6M (less than Ibanez). Just sayin'. Anyway, Gibbons drove in the go-ahead and insurance runs, Randy Winn tried to throw home to nail the second runner, but the throw was cut off (can't remember by who, probably Olerud) and Javy Lopez was nailed going to third. Through this weird twist of fate, Randy Winn got the outfield assist, probably going in the book as 8-3-5.
As for Jamie Moyer, he gave us another dose of sanity, much like the winning result of yesterday's game did for the psyche of the Mariner fan. Moyer made the fans at least temporarily erase some doubt in regards to his non-sharpitude (it's non-word day) of late. Okay, so Moyer did give up four walks, so he's still trying to get sharp. But he did two things the Mariners needed tonight: he kept the game close and gave the Mariners a chance to win, and he ate up seven innings, which the Mariners badly needed after Bob Melvin used everyone in the bullpen last night sans Matt Thornton.
I could stick Shigetoshi Hasegawa with the goat, and though it'd be more than defensible, with the brutal bases-loaded-nobody-out situation he helped facilitate, it'd just be too easy for me. Gameball first though...
Gameball: Jamie Moyer. I really couldn't go with anyone on the offense here, and thought it's way too easy to pick Jamie, he was good tonight. Seven innings, a run, 3 strikeouts. He issued four walks, but he also held the formidable Oriole offense to four hits. He did this on 110 pitches.
Goat: Ichiro. 0-for-5, stranded four runners. He did absolutely nothing to detract from David Locke's piece that ran this morning. Ichiro is batting .264 at the moment. He hit into a fielder's choice with the bases loaded in the 4th to strand three runners and stranded the leadoff walk (Olerud) in the 6th.
The Mariners sit at 7-14. They seem to really like this .333 mark. You know, it's sickening to think that if this team somehow reeled off seven straight, they'd still only be at .500. Yikes.
Can you say nine-inning lunch tomorrow?
Pineiro. DuBose. Tomorrow.
Also, he's not exactly at Ahoy! anymore either...he's now running under the name Nice Guys Finish Third, which I liked since the first time I saw it a few months ago.
It's probably safe to say Paul is now the master of his domain.
Well, I guess there's two good things that can come out of this...
1) Doc Rivers is no longer an ABC analyst. Thank god for that.
2) The Celtics decided that hiring Paul Westphal simply wasn't the right thing to do.
Anyways, what the hell is Danny Ainge doing to this once-proud franchise? I even heard a rumor that Paul Pierce could be shipped off to Chicago. Why? This can't be for real, can it?
But don't expect me to feel sorry for Boston fans. Oh no, y'all still got those two Lombardi trophies.
Add one more song to the worst songs ever list...
Jessica Simpson's butchering of Berlin's "Take My Breath Away". Talk amongst yourselves.
Tuesday, April 27, 2004
A: The other starting pitcher sucks too!
For all of the struggles Gil Meche had tonight, he somehow only gave up two runs. Matt Riley was less-than-spectacular as well, though two of his runs scored with Rodrigo Lopez on the mound in the Mariners 4-run 4th, which got them a 5-2 lead.
I was at the Tav here in Ellensburg watching this all happen over a Super Mother burger with fries. In the time I was in there, the Mariners managed to build themselves a 5-2 lead, and then blow said lead as Julio Mateo got lit up some.
Try as they might to lose this game (and boy did they ever in the Oriole 8th), the Mariners pulled this game out. It looked bad in the 8th when Ron Villone let the first two runners aboard (including walking the 9 hitter) with the Mora/Tejada/Palmeiro coming to the plate. But the Mariners just had their bit of luck tonight. Hasegawa and Myers aren't going to slice through these three hitters every time out (I think Tejada is 7-for-13 against Hasegawa and now Palmeiro is 4-for-11 against Myers), but they did tonight. Well, Guardado had to get that final out because Tejada wasn't really sliced through as much as nailed by Hasegawa (what was up with Tejada getting plunked twice tonight?).
I wasn't into this game quite as much as the others, and hell, I probably needed a break from the all-outitude of the crazy-long recaps. But I still don't know what the hell the roles are in the bullpen, though I think Mateo might be a righty long man, and Ron Villone may or may not be the lefty long man. This might change in a week, though.
Gameball: John Olerud. 3-for-5 on a night when every Mariner who stepped to the plate got a hit. He raised his average to .254.
Goat: Gil Meche. I usually don't try to pick an easy or obvious goat or gameball, but I wasn't fully into the game tonight. What I do know is that though Meche kept it close in the early innings somehow and in a sense gave the Mariners a chance to win, this bullpen may be jacked for the rest of this series. Matt Thornton is the only arm in the pen that wasn't used tonight, and that doesn't bode well when Freddy Garcia is the only one in the rotation right now that won't surprise anyone if he goes seven innings. With the other four, it's hit or miss so far this season, and Moyer's had one good outing this year (the rest being crap). Moyer goes tomorrow. I'll keep bringing this up until/if Moyer comes back around again: is he getting burned by QuesTec???????
Before I end this horribly disjointed recap, did anyone catch Francisco Cordero and the Rangers getting out of that bases-juiced-with-nobody-out situation in the bottom of the 9th? Al Soriano made two nice plays, going home on a grounder for the first out, then starting a 4-3 double play to end it. Wow.
Moyer. Ainsworth. Tomorrow.
[Edit Wed ~5:15a -- it occurred to me this morning that my method of usage for the word "jacked" probably isn't very universal. Some people may have had trouble associating the use of the word with the context of the rest of the paragraph. My usage of "jacked" is meant to mean "messed up" rather than "amped up" or "hyped up" or "more than ready for what's coming next." Yes, with the twisted and weird street lingo that I grew up around (I'm a scrappy boy from the Bremerton "ghetto"), "jacked" can mean something bad. To anyone that couldn't match "jacked" with the rest of that paragraph, I can see how you did, as the inspiration to right the wrong hit me early this Wednesday morning.]
Limp Bizkit "Behind Blue Eyes"
Was Roger Daltrey that hard up for money? You know, I would think that integrity would be worth a lot more than dollar signs. But I guess I was wrong.
The Who are one of the greatest bands of all-time. "Behind Blue Eyes" was one of the best songs of all-time. However, Fred Durst decided he wanted to take a piss on it. That pisses me off.
Kittie "Run Like Hell"
I want to run away and crawl into a hole when I hear Kittie's version of the 1979 Pink Floyd classic "Run Like Hell". Same case as The Who's "Behind Blue Eyes". For years, Pink Floyd wouldn't let any bands cover their work. This changed in 1999 when a supergroup known as the Class of 1999 performed "Another Brick In The Wall" on The Faculty soundtrack. The Class of 1999 featured the late Layne Staley, Tom Morello, Martyn Le Noble and Stephen Perkins. At least they had talent.
Kittie has no talent whatsoever. Next.
Ace of Base "Beautiful Life"
My life isn't as beautiful when I hear this song.
This was a bad trend during the mid-1990s. European dance groups. Good grief. I can't go on about this.
The Wallflowers "One Headlight"
Jakob, you aren't nearly as talented as your father.
This song represents all that is bad with FM Adult Contemporary radio. I've never been a fan of AC Radio and it's because they play crap songs such as "One Headlight".
And speaking of terrible AC Radio songs...
Donna Lewis "I Love You Always Forever"
Folks, I cannot express to you how much I hate this song.
This song is arguably the worst song I've ever heard. Yes, even worse than "Who Let The Dogs Out". It's just bad.
Enough of the bad songs for now. I'm sure I can think of more. But not right now.
Because let's be honest, there are a lot of bad songs out there. Sad but true.
"Sad But True", however, is a great song.
---The San Jose Sharks are for real. Enough of this "well, the Avalanche are flat" bullcrap. You want to know how you can beat the Avalanche? GET PHYSICAL. It's obvious to anyone that if you pressure Peter Forsberg, he will fold and make stupid penalties. I hope the bastard goes back to Sweden next year. Quit bitching, Divesburg!
Back to the Sharks. I predicted the Sharks to win the Stanley Cup, with Evgeni Nabokov to win the Conn Smythe Trophy. It's not over yet, but the Sharks are clearly the best team in the Western Conference right now. Patrick Marleau is on fire. Vincent Damphousse has scored a goal in each of the first three games of the Colorado series. Everything has gone right for the Sharks so far. They can sweep the Avs Wednesday night in the Pepsi Center.
---Jolbert Cabrera in center field tonight??? I have nothing more to say about that.
---The Black Eyed Peas "Let's Get It Started" promo on ESPN/ESPN2 is by far the most entertaining moment of the NBA Playoffs right now. However, if there had to be just one slight change to it, I would have Stacey Ferguson shake her ass more. Forget the Ice Man George Gervin and the other guys...when I think of BEP, I think of Stacey. Who doesn't? And by the way, the real name of the song is "Let's Get Retarded", but for corporate purposes, it's "Let's Get It Started".
---SportsCenter is crap. I'm just not a fan of Stuart Scott and Scott Van Pelt dropping their alma maters all over the viewers, that's all. For the record, Scott went to North Carolina and Van Pelt went to Maryland. I don't fear the turtle, bitch.
---I do fear the fact that Rafael Palmeiro will hit at least 2 home runs this series.
---The Seahawks didn't have a bad draft at all. If DT Marcus Tubbs doesn't have to go up against any players who played at Arkansas, Oklahoma, or Washington State, he should be fine in the NFL. And if LB/S Michael Boulware can be as good as his brother Peter, then the Seahawks are really in business.
---However, I would have really liked the Seahawks draft even more if they were able to select DT Vince Wilfork. That guy is a monster. And he's now in New England. Yikes.
---I hope Eli Manning enjoys the swamps of the Meadowlands. The Chargers may be terrible, but I'd still rather live in San Diego than New York/New Jersey.
---Ben Roethlisberger will be a better NFL quarterback than Eli Manning. Say goodbye, Tommy Maddox, XFL MVP.
---Somebody go up to Mel Kiper, Jr. and mess up his hair.
---I'm shivering over the thought of hearing Ichiro being mentioned in the same sentence as Tony Womack. I'll end this by saying that I wish Vladimir Guerrero was Japanese.
---Damn you and your daily doubles, you brigand! Same goes for David for mentioning Limp Bizkit's version of "Behind Blue Eyes". I guess I'll have to strike up another post of bad songs. I forgot a couple, so that will come soon.
--The Los Angeles Times reported that the Dodgers asked William Hung to be their "rally monkey". He refused because he wouldn't get paid.
You know, when Hung was introduced to America on "American Idol", I couldn't believe what I was seeing. He was so horrible he was hilarious. But the time has come for this guy to go back to Berkeley and enjoy his college life.
The fact that KOCH and Fuse offered him a record deal is just pathetic. It's spitting on all the unsigned talent out there who have been working their asses off for years for that big break. But I applaud Hung for getting that dollar dollar bill.
I would love to make some good money right now, but not at the expense of being a bad singer. Hung has no idea that the people who are buying his albums and watching him perform are making him out to be nothing but a joke. Hell, isn't he supposed to be a smart guy? After all, he does attend Cal.
---Genevieve Gorder is hot. She just isn't getting enough attention as far as our blog stats go. Paige Davis is great too, but she's no Genevieve.
---Richie Sexson has 9 home runs on the season. He hit a 503-foot shot off of the Cubs' Carlos Zambrano in Arizona's 9-0 win. However, he won't be a Mariner next season, so I'd rather not waste my energy.
Too bad, so sad.
---More bad music coming up. You know it.---
In yesterday's posted lineup, Jolbert Cabrera was listed as the center fielder in place of Randy Winn. Melvin wanted to get Cabrera's right-handed bat in against the left-handed Riley. Since Riley will pitch tonight, it's likely the Mariners will get their first look at Cabrera in center.
Two things that come to mind about this...
>> Randy Winn is horrible right now
>> Oh man, this bench is HORRID. As if having Quinton McCracken starting for an injured Raul Ibanez wasn't bad enough, we have to live with the idea of starting Jolbert Cabrera if Randy Winn is sucking and/or injured??
Monday, April 26, 2004
So I tried to go to the Twins website and see if I could get some info on the new turf. I didn't see any, but I did get the stadium history page. Here you learn things like how the roof is 1/32" thick, that Mark McLemore robbed a home run off Chili Davis when a ball went off a speaker, and that Rob Deer popped out twice to Greg Gagne with the balls hitting the ceiling and coming down.
Also at the Twins page is what they hope to be the new ballpark. I went through the artists' renderings, and it doesn't look too bad. In that part of the Midwest, there's sure to be a retractable roof, and there is one in these drawings. It'd be kinda weird if it worked, seeing the Mariners on TV on road trips and knowing the Twins wouldn't be in the dome anymore with Bob Casey's voice echoing off the walls, seats, and roof. "Centerfielder Kirbyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy Puckett!!!!" My lamentations over the sad decline of post-baseball Kirby Puckett are reserved for a post somewhere in the future.
One last thing about the Toronto/Minnesota game...the Blue Jays' road tops are brutal. They have to go with a darker shade on those numbers, because that light blue isn't very discernable from the road gray of the rest of the uniform on television. They can go with a black or navy blue number with the bright blue as trim, I won't mind. The point is, I can't identify players from far away on television, and it probably isn't better from far away at the ballpark either.
The 8pm PT SportsCenter was a waste of an hour today. It just reminds you of how dependent they are on baseball, because without a full slate of games tonight, we were treated to...
>> the first twenty minutes centered around Kerry Collins leaving the Giants and Eli Manning being thrust into the spotlight. TWENTY FREAKIN' MINUTES.
>> showing the Pistons/Bucks meaningless Game 4 before showing Colorado/San Jose Game 3 highlights. As you already know, I think the Stanley Cup Playoffs are infinitely superior to the NBA Playoffs, especially with the NBA Playoffs in their current state. The NBA really messed up when they extended the first round to a best-of-seven format DURING THE SEASON last year. How much more likely is an upstart team going to upset a higher seed when they have to come away with four wins instead of three? Who knows. What I do know is this...all rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs are head and shoulders above the dragged-out wake-me-when-it's-over NBA Playoffs
>> Quarterback JP Rosman being followed around with a camera on his way to combine workouts, etc.
>> Some weird thing (short film) called "The Scout" which is apparently part of a new thing called "ESPN Shorts." What was this? Doesn't this belong with that ESPN Original Entertainment stuff?
I guess I just miss SportsCenter, that's all. Luckily, they probably can't hit rock bottom like they did when they had Freddie Prinze, Jr. conduct a Sunday Conversation. That's something I like to forget.
A shakeup or major changes now would be looked on as panic, and we're not panicked," Melvin said. "We have guys we count on, we have to rely on our guys and expect them to fill their roles."
And those who might expect Melvin to erupt can think again. While he chewed his players out in a previous closed-door meeting, he won't take his frustration out on umpires as Piniella did on occasion.
He stayed in the dugout Saturday when Willie Bloomquist was called out on a bang-bang play at second.
"I thought he was out," Melvin said. "No one in the dugout even blinked, so I'm not going to go out and just vent.
"I'm not going to manufacture an incident, go out and scream. I'm in a tough position from the guy (Piniella) who preceded me. When you follow someone who is the way he is, there are expectations, especially after his success.
"But I don't believe you can be someone you're not."
Basically how Locke responded can be summed up in two thoughts --
>> Melvin, your team SUCKS. You BETTER be panicking.
>> SHUT UP. There's nothing you can do about the manager that was there before you, so SHUT UP. This is a loser's mentality if there ever was one.
Then Locke later brought up how Ichiro is off right now, and where he goes, the team goes. Locke then said that if Ichiro keeps putting up "Kenny Lofton- or Tony Womack-type" numbers, then Ichiro's 4-year $44M contract he signed in December may be one of the worst contracts in Mariner history. While I'm not sure if I'd go quite that far, I will say that we were definitely complaining about the dollar amount last December. I'll end this paragraph by saying that I wish Miguel Tejada was Japanese.
Locke also made some casual observations in the Seattle area. He said he came up to a group of guys and asked how the Mariners did, though he already knew. They chuckled at the Mariners' losing, something Locke found "bizarre." He said he's seen situations with a bad team where the fans are angry or frustrated with how their team is doing, but he's never seen something where people chuckle and laugh at the misdoings of the team, as if in a "I told you so" or "serves 'em right" kind of reaction. Quite frankly, I'm not going to lie to you, but I was laughing deliriously when Adrian Gonzalez' home run (the third of the three straight) sailed off his bat, and I was yelling "GO GO GO!!!" once Kevin Mench collected his final hit, hoping it would go into the gap. Why? I guess I really hated the offseason. I guess I'm just finally fed up to the point where I don't even care what happens anymore. In some ways, it's a win-win situation, because if the Mariners win, great, but if they lose, then HAHA!! It's kind of sick to know I can root for the team and still pull for everything to blow up in the faces of Bill Bavasi and Howard Lincoln.
Locke also put out these numbers...
>> If the Mariners played 93-win baseball (percentage-wise) the rest of the way, they will win 82 games
>> If the Mariners played 100-win baseball the rest of the way, they will win 88
Ah, yes, it's Monday night...
...and the Colorado Avalanche are DEAD. It was unjust in the first place that they got past the first round against a Dallas team that basically laid down for them when Vancouver lost a hard-fought series against a gritty Calgary team. Say goodbye to the 2003-2004 Colorado Avalanche. Damn, the Sharks look good.
Monday night continues...
"Semi-Charmed Life" Third Eye Blind -- Most of these songs are going to be songs that I hated since the first time I'd heard them. This is number one. Radio overplay, a catchy chorus. The most sickening part? You knew a bunch of teenagers and pre-teens loved the song for its bounciness, catchiness, etc., and lots of parents probably bought the Third Eye Blind album for their kids. Did you ever listen to the lyrics in this song? Crystal meth is involved. I wish I was lying. I didn't even get on my rant about the DJ at the Safe either...
"Fly" Sugar Ray -- If you'd heard a Sugar Ray song called "Mean Machine" back around 1994 or '95, you would have known that Sugar Ray was a fast and hard-rockin' band. I remember hearing the hype of the End DJ before this song was played, calling it "the song of the summer." I'd had expectations built up from "Mean Machine" and was anxious. Then I heard this steaming pile of crap. I've heard from other people that the rest of Floored is a lot like a speed metal record, but "Fly" pigeonholed the band.
"Iris" Goo Goo Dolls -- Speaking of pigeonholed, this one drove the nail into the any hopes of the Goo Goo Dolls not cranking out sappy singles for the rest of their existence. One can argue that "Name" off A Boy Named Goo planted the seed for "Iris," but one song got the Dolls on the map, and the other one got the City of Angels soundtrack and the overload of overplay. Ladies love the song. Of course they do. But there were certain small things I liked about the Goo Goo Dolls, and whiny sappy poppy acoustic ballads were not one of them. As an aside, my favorite songs of their breakthrough era were "Naked" and "Long Way Down." Sue me.
"Hey Baby" No Doubt -- What the hell was this? I watched No Doubt blow onto the scene with the "Just a Girl"/"Spiderwebs" phase and grew sick of them easily. Needless to say, some people knowing about their pre-major label days were screaming "sellout" like mad. Then they took a few years off, and I thought Return to Saturn actually showed them somewhat maturing and growing as a band. Then "Hey Baby" came out. I like what guitarist Tom DuMont did in that song. Oh, wait...was there guitar in that song, or was it just keyboards and beat boxes? Anyway, I imagine I'm not reaching too far by saying this one song may have alienated the second fan base that they cultivated (the first being that pre-popularity crowd) over the years. Overplay made the song worse, and the video made it ten times worse. If there's one thing this song did, it cemented the fact that No Doubt is Gwen Stefani's band, rather than No Doubt being a band that Gwen Stefani is in.
As an aside, Gwen Stefani edged out Mandy Moore in KJR's Bigger Dance on the Mitch Levy show. Mitch went off yesterday about how some guys in the sales department were accusing him of fixing the competition for Stefani. Mitch had a quick rebuttal to this. He asked, "was I not the person that, after Stefani was announced at the selection show, said 'since when did we allow men into the competition?' " Mitch also said that Stefani had "a cleft chin bigger than Kirk Douglas.' "
"Last Kiss" Pearl Jam -- So I might be skewed already because I despise last-two-albums Pearl Jam and greatly am skewed in favor of first-three-albums Pearl Jam. Ironically, three of my favorite Pearl Jam songs were not on any of their studio albums ("Yellow Ledbetter," "State of Love and Trust," "I Got Id"). This was not one of them. This was a remake of some old song, and it was sold for benefit. I can't argue with the selflessness of it, I guess, but the song itself...ughh. It was grossly overplayed, a departure (not that I wasn't surprised) of everything I once liked about Pearl Jam, and the worst part was that they played it slower than the original version. They dragged it out. Just take what I'm saying in this paragraph and multiply the bad feeling by about 20, because I can't accurately convey my discontent for this song.
"One" Creed -- If Creed had a good album, the first one was it. However, if there was one thing Creed needed other than a different lead singer and a less predictable drummer (it's this open-hat left-hand thing after he hits the snare), it had to be a different producer, or at least one that could thicken their sound. They always sounded incredibly thin to me. It was never a wall-of-sound feeling with them, but rather a doorway screen. Horrible analogy. With the song "One," it was a stereotypical angsty half-yelling song...THEN there was the spacey part where they crank up the phase/sucking effect (I think the former term may be more accurate) and it seriously messed with my equilibrium. It's one thing to phase the guitars and mess with the sonic effect, but to do that with the drums too? I mean, you CAN mess with all of those and phase it, but they went waaaaay too far. The other thing to hate about Creed? There was also a song called "Unforgiven" on the same album. You heard it right, "One" and "Unforgiven" were songs on the Creed album. The only way this could have been more musically blasphemous would be if they covered the Metallica songs of the same names. And then there's that "are we Christian? Are we not?" thing. They would flatly deny it, but I'm sure they still tried to take advantage of that. And THEN there's the comparison Scott Stapp made comparing Creed with LED ZEPPELIN. I wish I was lying, but I heard the words right out of his mouth. When it comes right down to it, I hate everything about this band, and I hate Scott Stapp. That said, "Bullets" was their best song. By far.
"Glycerine" Bush -- If there's one good thing Rolling Stone has ever done, it was their article they had on Bush where the headline screamed "Nirvana Wannabes." I laughed. I cried. I hurled. This was the stupidest of the stupid when it came to Bush songs, and it didn't help that the musical black hole known as Gavin Rossdale was the only member of Bush involved in the song (unless Nigel played the violin or something). Anyway, it was just him singing with an electric guitar, with the backing strings section. If you ever hear the song again, don't get caught up in the mood...listen to the lyrics. Okay, may you shouldn't -- they'll drop your IQ by about 490 points. I kid you not. The lyrics make absolutely no sense whatsoever. At least in other songs the ineptitude of the lyrics can be covered with drums, bass, cymbals, etc., but in this song, the wounds are uncovered for everyone to see and hear. Eeeeeee-ject.
"Complicated" Avril Lavigne -- Okay, it's some skateboarding girl from Canada who can play guitar, who seems to have somewhat of a rebellious streak. Then "Complicated" comes out. I have a feeling the decision to make this a single falls on LA Reid (since ousted from Avril's label), but this is a good way to pigeonhole the young Canadian, and worse yet, give off exactly the first impression that she probably didn't want. Green Day waited until three albums into their major label era to release "Good Riddance" partly because they had built up their reputation and carved their niche over the two albums and tours beforehand and you knew what you were getting from them. With Avril, teenyboppers, trendies, and pre-teen girls alike are buying or have bought the album in droves, but they're going to be decidedly irked if Avril ever decides to grow up and get mean, which late teenagers do. Point is, this crew is going to expect songs like "Complicated" and they're going to be disappointed when they get something else. What it probably means is that Avril will mature as an artist and deserve more recognition when she in fact will lose it, something that happens all too often these days.
"Cant Hold Us Down" Christina Aguilera -- You see, I had a coworker the last two summers that played Star 101.5 in the warehouse all damn day and this song would play every 30 minutes. Yeah, the song with Lil Kim (bet she'll be treated nice if she gets thrown in jail) and Christina asking questions about why guys getting a lot of action are players and why gals doing the same are called whores. Whoa, mothers of America...hope your daughters aren't listening to this!! Also about the "whores" thing, this is probably unfair, but it takes a certain type of person to bring it up, let alone release onto the masses and onto a demographic of youngsters that just might look up to you. Look no further than here to get a review of Aguilera's latest album from one of my favorite music critics, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic.com. He's slammed bands that I love, so I think he's pretty fair.
"Behind Blue Eyes" Limp Bizkit -- Jeremy had erased this one from his mind, so he totally forgot about it. I'll let him have the floor on this whenever he decides to take it. It won't be the first time he's vented about this song on this site.
And the last one I want to vent about now...
"I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" Aerosmith -- There's an easy way to still like Aerosmith, and here's how you do it: ignore everything they did after 1994. You won't be disappointed. As for this song, it featured absolutely nothing in terms of anything I have ever liked about Aerosmith. No catchy riff, no Steven Tyler swagger, no cool guitar solo, nothing. But only in America can you have a musical climate so pathetic that a band with over 25 years of previous better material can have their FIRST #1 hit with this abomination of a song. To me, this is one of those songs where I could let it slide if Steve and Joe Perry recorded it and had some different backing musicians behind them...but the minute they slap that Aerosmith name on it, there's a certain expectation that I hold, and it wasn't close to being met with this song.
There's tons of other songs out there that really get under my skin, but they'll have to hold off for a later date because I am hungry at the moment...
I hope y'all are enjoying the rainy day recess, brought to you by our good friend Precipitation.
The Mariners have been outscored this year 25-1 in the second inning.
The Mariners have been outscored 38-9 in innings 1 through 3.
I'm brewin' up that song post...
To keep with this theme, the Mariners designated Kevin "The Jacker" Jarvis for assignment and recalled Matt "F*($ Stick" Thornton to the big club. I couldn't make this stuff up, but the generator can.
So, this will probably prompt me to construct my "songs I hate" list that I've been sitting on for days. Jeremy posted his thoughts a couple days ago.
I'm not sure what the night holds here, but that's half the fun. One thing's for sure: the Mariners won't lose tonight.
The question again: was Melvin being prodded above to use him? Either way, what was he doing in the situations he was in on Friday and Sunday?
If Melvin actually thought both situations were great for Jarvis to come into, who is he going to go to now?
I'm just glad it won't be Jarvis for the time being...
Sunday, April 25, 2004
On to the recap...
top 1 -- Ichiro 2-2...full...6; Spiezio 1st-pitch 8; Boone 1-2...2-2 look K
bot 1 -- E Young 0-2 1-3; Blalock 1st-pitch 5; M Young 2-2...(outside?) full 1B CF; Fullmer 1-1 FC 4-6
>> This was an easy inning for both Ryan Franklin and John Wasdin. Niehaus pulled up a stat saying that the Mariners had scored in the first three innings of a game only once in the last 11 games.
top 2 -- Edgar 1-1 F3; Ibanez 0-2...2-2 9; Aurilia 0-2 look K (no argument)
bot 2 -- Dellucci 0-2...2-2 7; Mench 2-0 HR ~12 rows LF (now 3-for-5 against Franklin, 8 HR for Franklin...stat wrong?); Nix 0-1 1B CF; Barajas 2-2...(one foul nearly goes over top of foul pole) (lots of pickoff moves)...reaches low 1B CF (lots of fouls, quite a battle); Gonzalez 1st-pitch 2B CF (Winn TOTALLY should have had it, dropped it...TEX 2-0); E Young 1st-pitch 1B CF (TEX 3-0...runner held against Winn?!!); Blalock 1-1 1B RF (TEX 4-0, 6 straight hits); M Young 0-1 line 9; VILLONE WARMING; Fullmer 1-0 in diving 8
>> The Mariners bowed 1-2-3 to John Wasdin. Dave Niehaus showed more signs of senility, referring to Dave Dellucci as "Mike" Dellucci. Niehaus caught his own mistake, saying he may have known a Mike Dellucci at one time, and that he even had the incorrect name written in his scorebook. Niehaus then went on to refer to a Yankee pitcher named Ramon Vazquez, but he didn't catch that mistake (Javier as the correct Vazquez). Kevin Mench roped a fat 2-0 pitch about 12 rows above the wall scoreboard in left to give Texas the first run of the game. Rod Barajas engaged Franklin for a long at-bat that seemed to hang for a long time at 2-2 before Barajas reached down to poke a single into center. The Barajas at-bat seemed to me like the one that really unraveled Franklin. The next two hitters both swung at the first pitch and before anyone knew what hit them, two more runs had scored. Gonzalez' double was a ball that Randy Winn had hit his glove and drop just short of the wall. In this case, it's not a matter of saying Mike Cameron could have had that ball, it's a matter of saying anyone with a semi-sure set of hands would have caught that ball. Eric Young then hit a single where on run scored but the runner behind him mysteriously held at third on a ball to Randy Winn. You may never see that happen for the rest of the season. Hank Blalock then hit the sixth and final consecutive hit of the Ranger 2nd, giving them a 4-0 lead before Franklin mercifully got the next two hitters out, and Winn reminded us he does have some semblance of defense in him, diving in to glove a Brad Fullmer fly. Of course, there's a chance Winn may have misjudged the ball and moved a couple steps backward before charging forward and necessitating the dive. Horrible and mean thinking, I know.
top 3 -- Olerud 2-0 HR dug low RF; Davis 1-2...look K inside corner; Winn 2-2...swing K; Ichiro 2-2...(pitch almost there) full 4-3
bot 3 -- Dellucci 2B RF line; Mench 2-1 3B LF (TEX 5-1); VILLONE WARMING AGAIN; Nix 1-0 track 8 (TEX 6-1); Barajas 0-2...swing K; Gonzalez 0-2...full BB; E Young 0-2 HBP; VILLONE IN; Blalock 1st-pitch 1B RF (TEX 7-1); M Young 3-1 BB; Fullmer 1-0 spear line 6
>> John Olerud dug out a low pitch on 2-0 and showed us that yes, indeed there is a little power left in the tank. Ron Fairly called this "encouraging" because he got the bat head out in front instead of trying to go the ther way when he was ahead in the count. When Ichiro was up, Fairly noted that Ichiro is "so aware of pitches in on him right now" and that as a result, he gets out in front of the off-speed pitches. Ichiro watched a pitch on 2-2 that I probably would have wrung him up on. With the score 4-1, Dellucci hit a ball into rightfield that he got a double on, which I thought Ichiro wasn't quite going 100% on (this wouldn't be the first time in the game where I thought this was so); that ball didn't roll to the wall or get past Ichiro -- it was in front of him, for goodness' sake. Then a second straight weird play happened involving an outfielder (and third of the game) as Kevin Mench hit a ball to the track in leftfield; Raul Ibanez had the ball INSIDE his glove and dropped it, then banged into the wall (not sure if the tailbone was involved). I won't nail him for not catching with two hands due to how far he had to run and the speed of the play, but once again, a sure set of hands catches that ball. The plays involving Winn and Ibanez didn't look like very tough plays. This gave Texas a 5-1 lead and Laynce Nix drove in Mench with a fly ball to make it 6-1. Dave and Ron talked about how Franklin wasn't coming inside enough and the hitters were diving out for pitches low and away as a result. Dave Niehaus reminded us once again that baseballs in the Majors last an average of 4.5 pitches. After striking out Rod Barajas, Franklin went 0-2 on Adrian Gonzalez and walked him, then went 0-2 on Eric Young and beaned him before Bob Melvin came out with the hook. Yes, Ryan Franklin had absolutely lost it today. He said himself afterward that his location was never there. Any ticket recipients from Spiro at the game today went home disappointed. Ron "Vanilli" Villone came out and rubbed it in by allowing a Blalock RBI single and walking Michael Young before Brad Fullmer was robbed on a jumping spear play by Rich Aurilia.
top 4 -- Spiezio 0-2 U3; Boone 2-2...full 1B CF; Edgar 1-2 bat-shatter 2B LF corner (499th double, TEX 7-2); Ibanez 0-1 hard running 7; Aurilia 1st-pitch hard 1B LF; Olerud 1st-pitch HBP; Davis 1-0 9 -- Score one, leave three. Wasdin shows human qualities.
bot 4 -- Dellucci 1-2 3-1; Mench 1st-pitch HBP foot; Nix 1-1 HR CF sod farm (TEX 9-2); Barajas 1-1 5-3; Gonzalez 0-1 8
>> Niehaus began the 4th by asking Clyde the AFLAC duck if he was ready to eat some crabs in Baltimore. Edgar hit his 499th career double, which scored the Mariners' second run. the Mariners sustain something (albeit minimal) against John Wasdin, loading the bases with two out. We know how that goes, though. Kevin Mench was beaned in the foot with the first pitch, making Dave and Ron wonder whether he had a target on him because of his homer and beacuse of Franklin beaning Eric Young, etc. I'm guessing that wasn't the case, because Villone didn't go for an area above the waist. Laynce Nix then blasted one onto the sod farm in center to make it 9-2 as the rout was on.
top 5 -- Winn 1-0 2B LF; Ichiro 0-2...1-2 4-3; Spiezio 9 (Winn scores from 3rd, TEX 9-3); (more crew talk about needing to bunch up hits) Boone 1-0 1B CF; RAMIREZ WARMING; Edgar (Fairly: "look at this...some Texas gals...") 1-2...2-2 1B RF (loooong at-bat there); RAMIREZ IN (bitch move...Wasdin 1 out short of the win) Ibanez 1-0 6-3 -- Another single run...no two-out flurry. Two pitches to get one out for Erasmo.
bot 5 -- E Young 1-1 near-track 7; Blalock 1st-pitch F5; M Young 3-1...full...drop-down BB; Fullmer 0-2...1-2 4
>> Randy Winn led off with a double and scored on a Spiezio sac fly. Dave and Ron lamented more on the Mariners' ability to get one run here and there as well as their inability to not bunch their runs together. Such would hold true in this inning, an inning in which the camera operators got bored and showed five women in tank tops spelling out TEXAS, to which Ron Fairly said "look at this...some Texas gals!" Edgar had a long at-bat and singled, which chased John Wasdin, who left with two on and two out. Yes, Buck Showalter managed to screw John Wasdin out of a win, yanking him one out short of the required 5 innings. It's things like this that make me realize why I hate Buck Showalter as a manager. Wasdin wasn't even close to losing that game. A home run by Ibanez would have made it 9-6. THEN maybe you could pull Wasdin, but he still was in no danger of losing. Also, why the hell would you be in a hurry to use your bullpen if you're the manager of the Rangers? Anyway, Ron Villone managed to hold the Rangers scoreless for the first time since the 1st, which was a welcome change.
top 6 -- Aurilia 0-1 6-3; Olerud 2-1 4-3; Davis 3-1...full 1B RF; Winn 0-1 1B RF; Ichiro 0-2 1B RF (TEX 9-4); ALMANZAR WARMING; Spiezio 2-0 1B CF (TEX 9-5, 4 straight hits); ALMANZAR IN; Boone 1-2 1B RF (TEX 9-6); Edgar 0-2...2-2 swing K
bot 6 -- JARVIS IN...TOWEL!!; Dellucci 1-0 over-shoulder F5; Mench 1-1 1B LF; Nix 0-2...1-2...HR CF (TEX 11-6); Barajas 2-0 HR line LF (TEX 12-6); Gonzalez 1-2...2-2...1st ML HR RF (TEX 13-6, three straight bombs!!); NOBODY WARMING; E Young 0-2 near-track 9; Blalock 1-2...2-2 8
>> The Mariners mounted a little something of their own, managing to kick a field goal with 2 outs. Ben Davis got a hit (they took advantage of it too!) and so did Winn, Ichiro, and Spiezio, which chased Erasmo Ramirez. Bret Boone hit a single to rightfield to bring the Mariners to within three. Boone's hit was the fifth straight hit for the Mariner offense. So the Mariners come back to within three and given the "strength" of the Ranger pen and the success they had against the Mariner pen on Friday, surely you'd want a long relief man that could keep the game close, right? Does Kevin Jarvis fit this description??!! TOWEL!!! TOWEL!!! Julio Mateo threw THREE PITCHES the night before after resting on Friday. What happens next? Pure hilarity, of course! Kevin Mench singled, then Nix, Barajas, and Gonzalez all went yard, causing me to laugh deliriously in my Ellensburg apartment. After the Gonzalez home run (his first oin the Majors), no one was warming up and bullpen and it was apparent that Kevin Jarvis would be left out there to rot and save the remaining arms for the Baltimore series. After it was all over in the Texas 6th, Dave Niehaus said "the carnage is over." The three-run deficit and a small chance to win the game had gone up in smoke, becoming a SEVEN-run deficit instead. The rout was back on, and back for good.
top 7 -- Ibanez 0-2...full corner track 7; Aurilia 1-2...full 9; Olerud 2-1 F5
bot 7 -- M Young 1-1 9; Fullmer 1st-pitch 5-3; Dellucci 1-2...4-3
>> Ron Fairly took the radio play-by-play in the top of the 7th, leading me to believe Niehaus needed a bathroom break or a walk around the park to refresh his mind or something. In the 1-2-3 Mariner 7th, Ron told us how Carlos Almanzar is a licensed barber (family trade) in the Dominican Republic and that Carlos occasionally cuts the hair of his teammates, saving them money. At least I was able to take something out of the inning. Dave returned to the booth in the bottom of the inning. In the bottom of the inning, Fairly made a remark comparing the Mariners' struggles to those of the Yankees. I hardly believed that. Offensively, nothing happened in the 7th for either team.
top 8 -- Davis 1st-pitch 1B CF; Winn 0-2 swing K; Ichiro 1st-pitch 6-4-3 DP
bot 8 -- Mench 1-1 1B LCF (no cycle); Nix (WP, runner to 2nd) 1-2 U3; Barajas 1st-pitch F3; Gonzalez 2B RCF gap (TEX 14-6); E Young 0-2...1-2 swing K
>> Ben Davis managed to get his second hit of the game. Randy Winn made quick work of himself, then Ichiro got his 6-4-3 on. Niehaus noted that this was the second time Ichiro has grounded into a double play this year, today being the 19th game of the year. Ichiro grounded into ONE double play ALL of last year. Kevin Mench just missed the cycle but tore the Mariners a new one, going 4-for-4 in this game. He would score on a Gonzalez double to the wall in the gap that I thought Ichiro took a bad route on, looking like he ran to where the ball was rather than where the ball was going to be. In sum, I just think he could have gotten to the ball quicker. If he didn't want to, though, I can't blame him after Jarvis' doings in the 6th. The Mariner offense can put up runs, yes, but they're not going to put up a seven-run inning anytime soon with the way it's going.
top 9 -- MAHAY IN; Spiezio 2-1 IF 1B SS low throw not picked; Boone 1-1 FC 4-6 (no DP); Edgar 0-1 1B dinker CF MC CRACKEN PR; PH CABRERA 0-2...1-2...swing K; Aurilia 1-1 4 -- TEX sweeps SEA in Texas for first time since 1998
>> Ron Mahay came in to handle an 8-run lead. Some turbulence, but the job was done. Spiezio got aboard on what could have been an error. Boone beat out a double play, then Edgar singled. To prove that Melvin indeed didn't give a crap about this one, he put in Jolbert Cabrera to pinch-hit for Ibanez, who was 0-for-4 and stranded three on the day. Crap goes out, crap comes in. Cabrera struck out to make his average a nice .067. Rich Aurilia then flew out to second to mercifully end the game.
Gameball: Edgar Martinez. 3-for-5 with an RBI and his 499th career double. This wasn't too hard to choose.
Goat: Kevin Jarvis. Like I said, I wanted Julio Mateo to be that first guy out of the pen once the Mariners were down three. Jarvis comes in, gets Dellucci out, then surrenders a single and three home runs in succession. Can they cut this guy loose already? Is there really more value in having Kevin Jarvis sucking up a roster spot as opposed to, say, just about anyone else? Sure, Ryan Franklin sucked (royally) in this game, and quite frankly, Freddy's been the most consistent guy (scary, isn't it) in this rotation so far this year. The bottom line is, the game was still within reach going into the bottom of the 6th. This was almost a carbon copy of Friday's game. Mariners get within reach, Jarvis comes in (bottom of 7th down 7-5 on Friday), and it all goes to hell. THIS GUY SUCKS!!!!! Without looking back on recaps, I think Jarvis has blown situations like these at least four times this year. Just speculation, but for sure, he's blown two in three days (two outings in a row).
After 19 games of divisional play, the Mariners are 6-13. After cashing in on divisional opponents in April for the first three years of the unbalanced schedule, the Mariners crapped the bed this year but somehow find themselves only five games back of the division lead (Angels/Rangers).
To put it simply, the pitching doesn't show up when the offense is there, and the offense doesn't show up when the pitching is there.
The infield defense isn't looking quite as bad as it did the first couple games of the season, but the outfield defense hasn't given me any indication that it will get better. Today, everyone who said that Ryan Franklin would be worse off because Mike Cameron was no longer roaming centerfield for the Mariners were definitely given some ammunition today. Overall, the same people have been given ammunition quite a few times as a result of Winn's play in centerfield.
I think it was Bill Krueger a couple years ago that said the perfect bullpen is one where the pitchers know who's going to warm up right when the bullpen phone rings (i.e., without picking up the phone). I can't say the roles have been defined in the bullpen at all. There only seem to be two roles that are defined right now. If the Mariner offense just got done coming back to pull a game within reach, Jarvis is coming in. If the Mariners have a lead in the 9th, it's Guardado (boy, that hasn't happened often, has it?). Who knows other than this? If Melvin pulls the starting pitcher or makes a move in the middle innings, the only thing I know as to what pitcher is coming in is "not Guradado." Granted, the return of Soriano should alleviate the situation a bit, but does Bob Melvin know what the hell he's doing with this bullpen?
It's 19 games into the new season...does anyone like The New Bob Melvin?
As an aside, the Baseball Tonight panel of Ravech, Kruk, and Reynolds all agreed that the Mariners are indeed "in trouble." Agreed. Ravech also said at one point "I don't know how you could argue that the Mariners are a top team in the West right now." Also agreed.
What happens next? Well, the Mariners just got done facing the team with the highest batting average (coming into today) in the AL. Coming up? Four in Baltimore (4th in AL batting average), three in Detroit (3rd), and three at home against Minnesota (2nd, NOW FEATURING TORII HUNTER!!).
Meche. Riley. Tomorrow.
My recap should be up within the next few hours...
Now, courtesy of this site, I give you the Oz Prison Bitch names of your 2004 Seattle Mariners. Order coincides with the Big Board. I'll warn that since these are Oz prison names, the language (though the straight curse words are masked) may be a little strong for those not liking strong language. I like to refer to the blog as PG-13 or "no worse than the raciest thing you'd see on Letterman" most of the time, but this may or may not be a small notch above that. Not by much, though.
Dan "Snaggle Tooth" Wilson
John "The Wood-meister" Olerud
Bret "Bitch Ho" Boone
Scott "Wish Bone" Spiezio
Rich "Fruity Pebbles" Aurilia
Raul "Fruity Pebbles" Ibanez (looks like we're testing the limits of the database here)
Randy "The Wood-meister" Winn (once again...)
Ichiro "Ugly Skank Bitch T^*t" Suzuki
Edgar "Juicy Ass" Martinez
Ben "Finger F*#@er" Davis
Willie "Herr Homo" Bloomquist
Dave "Ox" Hansen
Quinton "Twinkle Toes" McCracken
Jolbert "Ass Muncher" Cabrera
Jamie "#*$ Guzzler" Moyer
Joel "Towelboy" Pineiro
Freddy "Sweet Lips" Garcia
Ryan "The Crack Killer" Franklin
Gil "Shower Stalker" Meche
Eddie "Boy P#($y" Guardado
Shigetoshi "One Nut" Hasegawa
Kevin "The Jacker" Jarvis
Julio "Turd Tapper" Mateo
Mike "Salad Tosser" Myers
Ron "The Harpoon" Villone
Rafael "The Fist" Soriano
There you have it -- the Oz Prison Bitch names of your 2004 Seattle Mariners. I hope you enjoyed it.