OK, not the best game to get back in the swing . . .

Made the journey down to AZ . . .

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though I freely admit, M’s Spring Training was not the only thing on my mind . . .

After many months of house sale/house purchase, moving into a rental and finally, moving into our “forever home” and out of storage ~ all during one of the coldest winters on record and so far, one of the wettest springs ~  I was ready for a little rest, relaxation and sunshine!!!

As it happens, I was with two gals from Seattle (one a non-baseball fan; one who likes, not loves it) and another who is a passionate Indians fan (she hails from Ohio) AND Padre fan (currently resides in SanDiego) so, all this to say I only managed to see ONE Mariners game . . . 😦

Mariners 2 | Padres 12

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which I can’t say I gained any sort of reasonable data from (other than, the Pads can hit ’em out when the wind is blowing 😉 )

Just a few observations/predictions . . .

  • MOST IMPROVED: the fact that (at the time of this game) Mike Zu was leading the team in walks, is a very good thing!
  • BEST NEWCOMER: have since heard an interview with Mitch Haniger and (with the notable exception of his love for ‘Bay area sports” – yuk!) he seems as advertised in both talent and like-ability 🙂
  • COMEBACK KID: as I’m sure others were – so excited when I saw Smiley in the WBC and now, he’s down with “soggy” arm – not exactly encouraging words from the Skipper 😦
  • TEAM COMPONENT IMPROVEMENT: speed and great outfield defense may actually be a thing this season
  • UNSUNG HEROS; I’m getting really good vibes about the bullpen (and that was even before we signed old friend Mark Lowe!)
  • ACE IN THE HOLE: and then there’s Felix – seems more motivated than ever before (down season last year when we finally had a little offense) – methinks he’s gonna do good 😉

 

One thing’s for sure . . .

craziness happens at ST for the previous WS winner ~ the line at the Cubs/Tribe game was insane!

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On a non-baseball note . . .

I highly recommend two restaurants: Indigo Crow (Cave Creek) and Dick’s Hideaway (Phoenix)

FOUR MORE DAYS ~ Go M’s!!!

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Is this thing on???

Been a long time, been a long time, been a long lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely time!

OK, not really lonely, just so many major events going on in my life the past year or so . . .

Not the least of which has been the joy of becoming a grandmother for the first time and the most recent of which was the huge life style change of selling our family home and moving to an island in the south Sound. My husband and I still have our same jobs but, wanted to downsize in anticipation of retirement but now, have an extreme commute. It’s all been good and all been worth it ~ just will take a bit of time to find a rhythm, adjust, adapt and fit everything in.

Can’t help but feel like a “bad fan” . . .

Not only for neglecting the blog but, also for my lack of keeping up with the news and notes on my favorite team. So, “whatever it takes” 😉 I vow to stay informed and provide some thoughts and feelings on a more regular basis from now on – starting tomorrow!

I’m currently in Arizona . . .

Needed a break from moving and unpacking so, decided to take a long “girls’ weekend”. I’m with more than Mariners fans so, we went to Giants/Padres yesterday, going to M’s/Padres tomorrow and Cubs/Tribe tomorrow night.

But, this trip is not only about baseball (gotta ease into it after so long) . . . .

So, it’s time for dinner and a casino 🙂

In the meantime, I’ll just leave this here . . .
(the view from out new home)

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one more sleep . . .

Due to the Seahawks super success of late (two Super Bowls in two years – one of each variety, the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat) I’ve found it increasingly difficult to switch gears from the frenzy of football to the everydayness of baseball. And, I’m sad to admit, I didn’t even follow Spring Training all that closely but, here’s what I know . .

Apparently, our little ole M’s are a “trendy pick” . . .

 

OK.

I’m ready now.

ONE. MORE. SLEEP.

It’s baaaaaak . . . .

And so am I!

OK – I admit. I feel a just a tad guilty.

A few months ago, I hung up my compass and pulled ashore from the Mariners seas in favor of soaring with the Hawks and the twelves for the winter. And, as chronicled in previous posts ~ what a flight it was! But, after an exhilarating fling with my “first sports love”, I’m back from the “gridiron giddiness” and ready to get back to my “true sports love” 🙂

heart baseball

Seems I’ve got a little catching up to do . . .

From what little I’ve heard, sounds like Mac is well-liked . . .
and, above all, respected. He’s not shy with the media or his players – has strong feelings and opinions and isn’t afraid to voice them. But, he want’s to keep things loose. He and Jack Z even visited with Pete Carroll at the Seahawks training facility during practice (hey – not everything can translate from the gridiron to the diamond but, doesn’t hurt to associate with those of winning ways 🙂 )

Lloyd McClendon

As for Robinson Cano . . .
I’ve heard snippets of interviews with Brad Miller, Kyle Seager and Justin Smoak and they all rave about him. Not only because they are thrilled to have one of the best hitters in the game on their side now but -to a man- they are impressed with his work ethic AND his willingness to share his knowledge and experience. I have to say, initially, I was less than thrilled with the prospect of that HUGE contract but, if he can play for the M’s like he did in pin-stripes and help their young hitters to improve and, maybe even entice some other high profile free agents along the way, through the years – then, it will be worth it.

hello cano

So, anyhoo, there was a baseball game today 🙂
The Annual Charity Game between the M’s and Padres at the newly renovated Peoria Sports Complex they share.

Mariners 7 | Padres 1
Seems things went pretty well for the M’s first dip into spring, not so much for the Pads . . .

Welcome Back Baseball!!!

(I really did miss you, even though I had a tremendously delicious distraction for a time 😉 )

Russell and the trophy | Paul Sancya, AP

 

Tomorrow, Cactus League play starts in earnest.

g74 | look, runs we’ve been craving! look, it was all for naught.

Mariners 9 | Angels 10

Normally, we’re mourning for Felix and his lack of run support.
Not so tonight – the bats did just about everything they could – staking him leads of 7-0, 8-1 and 8-2 only to see it evaporate 8-7 by the time he left the mound after the 5th. Good things tend not to happen when your ACE has a very bad night and your bullpen is all kerfuffled because your closer is outta whack and other young arms are struggling.

ON THE MOUND
Seems Felix used up his allotment of good games vs the Halos this season (ONE). They are indeed his nemesis. Of course, by the time I settled in to watch the game, it was the bottom of the 5th – that was the part where Felix gave up SEVEN consecutive hits (homer, single, single, single, homer, single single) and FIVE runs. The very unhappy Felix totals . . . .
FIVE innings ~ TWELVE hits ~ SEVEN runs ~ SIX earned ~ ZERO walks ~ TWO strikeouts

} Danny did sort of his usual thing – allowed a run (the tying run at the time 8-8) and struck out THREE

} Carter was unable to record an out in the 8th (also gave up a tying run 9-9)

} Yoervis came in to a tie game with a runner at 3B and no outs and they were able to get TWO outs at the plate but then he WALKED in the go-ahead run . . . argh!

} Ollie came in and struck out Hamilton for the last out of the 8th

AT THE PLATE
Unfortunately, I missed all the good stuff . . .
you know, the part were the M’s scored EIGHT runs in the first FOUR innings.

Overall, certainly no complaints about the offense
~ Kyle’s on fire! FOUR hits (including a double and a homer) THREE runs & THREE rbi
~ Raul with TWO hits and TWO rbi
~ Nick just keeps on getting on . . . ONE hit, ONE walk, TWO runs
~ good to see Michael S with a couple of hits including a double
~ Henry & Justin were the only ones without hits, both walked and Justin scored (and it looked like he m i g h t have hit one out in the top of the 9th

IN THE FIELD
* web gem by Brendan in the 8th – bases loaded diving stop and then throwing home from his knees video
* a nice catch by Michael to rob Boujos of extra bases (returning the favor) and an outfield assist from Raul
* also a couple of throwing errors (Felix and Henry) and a wild pitch

tweets of the game . . .

Wrapping up the Spring

M’s finished Cactus League play at 16-9, second place behind the A’s

from my AZ trip last year

Their offensive percentages were pretty impressive ~ M’s rankings for all of MLB this spring…
~1st in BA
~1st in OBP
~1st in OPS
~2nd in SLG

The actual number of runs, hits, doubles triples and homers wasn’t too impressive, but…
the fact that they played about 7-8 games less than most teams contributed to that

Then there was the pitching …
a scattering of good individual performances but, short of Felix, needs a little polishing

Individuals that shone in the springtime sun (rankings includ Cactus AND Grapefruit Leagues)…
~Kawasaki 1st in BA .455
~Kawasaki 2nd in OBP .489
~Seager and Ichiro 8th and 10th respectively in OPS (1.116, 1.113)
~Liddi was named the Peoria Sports Complex Rookie of the Year
~Montero, Kawasaki and Peguero tied for the team lead in RBI (13)
~Felix 4th in WHIP 0.86

As for the M*A*S*H unit…
~Adam Moore went 0/3 with Tacoma in his first game action since rehabbing his wrist
~Carp and Guti are continuing their rehab in Arizona and appear to be on schedule

st 27 | the FINAL spring tune-up

Mariners 7 | Rockies 2

Good on ya, Hector!
One of the best performances of the spring … 7IP – 7H – 1ER – 0BB – 3K
and good thing to – his next stop? Arlington.  Where he will make his Mariners debut vs. the Rangers and none other than the much hyped, Yu Darvish.

BP up/down…
~ George was up to his old spring tricks, giving up a run in 1/3 of an inning
~ Delebar and Luetge combined for 1.2 scoreless

Hits, hits and more hits!
~ all but a couple of starters had at least one hit and those that didn’t hit walked (four total)
~ how ’bout Figgy?!? TWO, count ’em TWO run-scoring TRIPLES!
~ Ackley and Jaso each had doubles (Jaso, btw, was 3/4 with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored)

And that’s all she wrote…
season RE-starts for real in Oaktown on Friday!!