#24EVER ~ the ceremony to celebrate an unbelievable career

What a night, what a career, what a celebration!

Saying the Mariners do ceremony well is a serious understatement.
So easy to get engrossed in the moments, the memories and the emotions that you can almost forget that after the celebration, there’s still a baseball game to watch 🙂

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prepping for the ceremony

The M’s pulled out all the stops, deservedly so, for Junior . . .
from the 24 in center field, on either side of home plate and even flying in the sky to baseball 24’s in person (Rickey Henderson and Tony Perez) and other famous 24’s on the video screen (Jeff Gordon and Kobe Bryant)

from fellow Seattle Hall of Famers (Steve Largent, Cortez Kennedy, Spenser Haywood and Gary Payton) to all of the current M’s wearing backwards caps and 24 jerseys during batting practice to video tributes from none other than Hank Aaron and Willie Mays and the announcement that Junior’s sweet swing will be immortalized in the form of a statue outside Safeco Field next season ❤

And, of course, Junior added an impromptu touch of his own with a call to Mr. Mays 😉

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And then, the culmination, Junior’s daughter Taryn helped unveil the ultimate 24

 

I thoroughly enjoyed it and am so thankful I got to see it in person with my Dad!

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tweets of the celebration . . . 

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Disappointment and Progress | Home Highlights

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1-3 vs. the Orioles
3-1 vs. the Rangers


Bright Sights…

~ Jarrod! a one-hitter at the O’s and a nice start vs. the Rangers
~ One of the greatest moments so far this season was Franklin’s 8th inning 3-run homer that ended up winning the 1st game against Texas (Felix’s reaction in the dugout was absolutely priceless)
~ Speaking of Felix – super, super performance – becoming and ACE before our eyes
~ Erik seems to be getting better – didn’t quite get through 6, but progress made
~ Jason actually did well vs. the O’s (a point forgotten in the despair of the loss) he was in trouble every inning but battled and battled (and battled himself right down to AAA)
~ Definitely some clutch hits and great defense enjoyed on the home stand

Bleak peeks…

The bullpen virtually imploded in the 2nd and 3rd games against the O’s – here’s hoping it was just one of those “blips” that pens go through (as they did end up rebounding nicely vs. the Rangers) and that with a little rest over the ASB they will come back with a vengeance

And, maybe add to their helmet collection helmet collection…

And the brigade of Spartan helmets above the bullpen bench did their job to perfection.

Spartan helmets?

The Mariners’ often-goofy band of relief pitchers has acquired an assortment of props for the pomp and ceremony that takes place nightly in the bullpen. Among them are three Spartan helmets.

When Johnson’s long fly carried over the fence to break a 1-1 tie, the ball bounced off the roof of the bullpen bench, which in turn caused one of the helmets to fall.

Crisis? Hardly.

“Nothing hurt,” reliever Chris Jakubauskas said. “That’s what it’s there for.”

Come again?

Basically, the helmets are placed in a spot on the roof over the bullpen bench so they overlook the field. In a symbolic way, they attract all that’s good for the Mariners and repel evil.

Fun Group 🙂

One broom, one duster | Home Highlights

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3-3 from the Snakes
2-3 from the Pads


Bright Sights…

~ Junior’s flair for the dramatic
a 3-run shot that tied a game vs. the D-Backs in the 8th inning – a game the M’s would eventually win) and a solo shot (in a losing cause) vs. the Padres that was the 5000th in M’s franchise history
~ Ichiro = hot, hot, hot
he continues to lead the majors in BA on his way to another 200+ hit season. He also recorded the 1900th hit in his major league career
~ Russell continues to muscle
picked up right where he left off after returning from his grandfather’s funeral
~ So far so good, with the bat AND the glove for Wladdy filling in for Endy
~ Starters, for the most part were bright – Jarrod had two QS (and actually got one win!), Felix was Felix, Jason was good again and Brandon’s making baby steps in improvement
~ Bullpen was sure and steady as per usual

And look, ma! An 11+ run differential for the home stand 😉


Bleak peeks…

~ losing Endy (due to the outfield collision) for the season
~ losing Yuni (just when he was improving a few things) for a couple of weeks to hamstring strain


In tune in June | Home Highlights

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Home Sweet Home

2 of 3 from the Orioles
2 of 3 from the Twins

I’m not sure if having the best record in one-run games (15-12) is a GOOD thing or a BAD thing. All I know is that with the amount of Tums I’ve consumed in the late innings recently, I’ve surely compensated for any calcium deficiency I might have had 🙂

When one ponders upon the multitude of times that just a couple more runs would have been the difference between W and L, it is indeed exasperating. But, but this rosy one also sees it as hopeful ~ for as bad as the offense has been, it only needs to be a little bit better to make a HUGE difference. (provided that the pitching can stay the course – and that may be a tall order)


Bright Sights…

  • After losing 6 of 9 series in May, the M’s are off to a winning start in June, having won their first 2 series of the month and posting the 2nd highest BA and SLG so far in June.
  • Overall team ERA of 3.74 is good enough for #1 in the league
  • FEWEST runs ALLOWED in the league
  • 2 pitchers in the top ten in the league in strikeouts (Felix #5, Erik tied at #9)
  • 2 players in the top ten in the league in average (Ichiro at #1, Russell at #9)



Bleak peeks…

  • In April, the M’s had the highest BA w/RISP in the AL – it is now the lowest (.234)
  • FEWEST runs SCORED in the league
  • The ERRORS continue to mount – 45 is the MOST in the AL

Exciting bookends, middle, not so much | Home Highlights

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BoSox and Halos and Giants, oh my! (5-5)


ROSY RAPTURE

left bookend of the home stand the Sox…
~ great to take 2 of 3 from the Bostons (and I got to see both wins in person!!)
~ whodathunk the the combination of Vargas, Olson and Jaku could hold the Sox to only 11 runs and get two team wins? Way to step up!
~ and talk about shutting the door via the pen … ZERO runs given up by the bullpen all weekend!
~ game one: Ichi two homers and Yuni two walks – likely never to happen again 😉 ~ game three: 9th inning victories are fun and exciting!

right bookend of the home stand the Giants…
~ game one: best of both worlds, Randy pitches well and gets to pay his respects to the fans, but the M’s win
~ game three: Felix was more like Felix (though he had one rough inning) and nice to see Jr. and Adrian’s power displays (and Yuni walked twice more!)
~ series win = always good



PALLID PONDERINGS

Halos in the middle…
~ the hitting finally shows up (in the first two games) but then the pitching falls A-part
~ Ichi hits lead off home run in the third game of the series on Wednesday and the M’s would not score again (shut out on Thursday) until the bottom of the 6th vs. the Giants on Friday

Only 8 wins so far in the month of May and no back-to-back wins for the entire month.

First losing homstand proves exciting but costly | Home Highlights

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A’s and R’s (2-3)


ROSY RAPTURE

A+ for excitement…
~ 4 out of 5 games decided by one run
~ wins in the 9th are fun (especially when the winning run scores on a single after a 14 pitch AB)
~ wins in the 15th are pretty exciting too (especially when the tie is broken three times!)

Some of the positive pitching numbers…
~ second best ERA in the AL (3.79)
~ fourth highest number of K’s in the AL (184 – 14 above league avg)
~ fourth fewest number of BB’s in the AL (86 – 7 below league avg)

Some of the positive batting numbers…
~ leading the AL in BA w/RISP (.312)
~ second lowest strikeout total in the AL (148 – 29 below league avg)


PALLID PONDERINGS

Bats need to get a little battier…
~ 25 runs isn’t bad, but just a couple more runs and it’s easily a 4-1 home stand As for the pitching
~ third lowest BA in the AL (.261)
~ last in the AL in BB (73 – 24 below league avg)

DL stints all too common…
See previous post – let it not be a trend

color me perplexed…
~ Jarrod and Erik have AWESOME outings each going 7IP w/ at least 6 K’s and only 1ER) yet in both cases the team came away with the loss
~ Silva, Jaku and Felix all struggled in varying degrees from mightily to just not quite right, yet the team won 2 of those games