If you're getting tired of hearing about practice and yearning to hear about Practice, then have I got good news for you! It is not actually my news to report, but I will pass it along, like the loyal and underpaid middleman that I am. Friday, the Seattle Mariners will take a break from practicing how they field groundballs and look at Ichiro to take on the Seattle Mariners in a heated intrasquad contest. There's no love lost between these two sides, he says as if he has any idea what it means to not have lost love.
The sides have been given the imaginative names Team 1 and Team 2. The starting lineups and scheduled pitchers are shown below:
|Team 1||Team 2|
|Figgins 3B||Ford CF|
|Ackley 2B||Ryan DH|
|Wells LF||Ichiro RF|
|Smoak 1B||Carp LF|
|Olivo C||Montero C|
|Kawasaki SS||Seager 3B|
|Peguero RF||Liddi 1B|
|Quiroz DH||Rodriguez 2B|
|Saunders CF||Triunfel SS|
|Team 1||Team 2|
There's one more pitcher going for Team 2 than for Team 1 because Jason Vargas is supposed to throw two innings. I don't know what makes Jason Vargas so special but to be perfectly honest it's not like I know Jason Vargas very well. Maybe he did a neat thing. Incidentally, Matthew and I decided over the weekend that a good nickname for Jason Vargas would be Toni. I don't really remember why. Just putting it out there.
In the grand tradition of recent Seattle Mariners lineups, Team 1 looks to be throwing away the DH position. It's also going to be funny when Carlos Peguero gets completely exposed by prospects who have yet to see triple-A. It won't be that funny, since Carlos Peguero is a member of the Mariners organization and aw man, but it won't not be funny. If he hits a bunch of dingers instead then that will be something else. I like how Michael Saunders can't even get out of the ninth slot in a lineup with Guillermo Quiroz and Munenori Kawasaki in it. Team 2 is also throwing away the DH position because what's fair is fair. I wonder if when the Mariners were signing Darren Ford, they told him he might get to lead off. That would be a sneaky trick.
Because this'll be the Mariners' first actual game, expect to see a lot of play-by-play tweeting, even though it isn't an actual game for real, or even an exhibition game. It's a step below a game that doesn't matter. But it's a step above not a game at all so the play-by-play will probably annoy me and warm me at the same time. I mean, at least people will be hitting real pitches and fielding real balls in play. Unless nobody manages to hit any of the real pitches. I don't know, maybe they're really rusty.
We've been slogging through almost-almost-almost baseball. Friday brings almost-almost-baseball. That will lead to almost-baseball. And that will lead to baseball. And that will lead to disappointment. And that will lead to the offseason, and that will lead to almost-almost-almost-baseball. It's probably better not to think too hard about all this.