This post isn't about Adam Jones.
I'm just kidding it totally is
September 12th: With the M's trailing Oakland 5-4 in the bottom of the eighth, Adam Jones leads off with a pinch-hit solo bomb to knot things up.
Moments In History That Almost Never Happened:
-the US Supreme Court case of Lawrence v. Texas
-Hitler living to 51
-Falklands War of 1982
-the second annual Troutfest
-the Mitsunobu reaction
-production of the Viennese romantic operetta The Merry Widow
-the Xin Dynasty
-Adam Jones taking Elfin Embree deep to right-center
Originally, it was supposed to be Jeremy Reed. With the difficult Santiago Casilla on the hill and Jamie Burke due up, John McLaren went to his bench for the first lefty he could find. The problem? Bob Geren anticipated this and had Embree warming up for just such an occasion. As soon as Reed was entered into the game, the same was done for Embree, presenting McLaren with a predicament: let Reed hit anyway, or waste him for the rest of the game by pinch-hitting someone else?
Fortunately it was September, and with expanded rosters this wasn't much of a predicament at all, not even for John McLaren. The answer? Waste Reed and grab a righty. While Reed took off his helmet and hit the showers after an exhaustive night of work, Adam Jones stepped up to the plate and, on the sixth pitch of the at bat, launched a 94mph fastball at the belt deep into center field.
When the ball first left his bat, no one was really sure. It looked well-struck, but it didn't look that well-struck, and as Jeff Davanon gave chase I crossed my fingers that he wouldn't pull some ex-Angel pixie dust out of his cooter and make a tremendous catch on the track. But Davanon stopped short of the wall, and sure enough, the ball didn't. It came down in the first row, and as Jones rather honkily pumped his first while rounding the bases, I began to wish that I were watching with a group, so I could look them all in the face and say "I told you he could do that." Kind of like how The Holy Publicist must've felt after Lazarus. For possibly the first important time in his Major League career, Adam Jones' ability stopped being theoretical and started being real. It was fulfilling, for all of us. Even if it did come right on the heels of the most demoralizing slump in franchise history.
While the game didn't really mean anything, the Mariners would go on to win it an inning later, and Jones was rewarded for his heroics by sitting on the bench the next night. But, if nothing else, at least this time he had something to smile about.