I spend a lot of time analyzing, questioning and otherwise pondering my own sports fandom, so it's no surprise to me that I've led off my first two Editor's Picks posts with articles that explore the Mariners fan experience. Nathan Bishop, perhaps the most perfect example of the tortured-yet-unwavering fan I've personally encountered, walks the line between self-loathing and unbridled optimism like only he can as he kicks off the 2013 season.
There are a lot of hacks, bull-shitters and know-it-alls doing their best to give the world of prospect writing a bad name, so I am incredibly grateful to have Rick Randall alongside me here at Lookout Landing. Rick has emerged over the past couple years as one of the good ones and I will be eagerly counting the days leading up to each of his bi-weekly columns. In this one, he explores the spring impressions left by some of the Mariners' top prospects, including Brandon Maurer, Brad Miller, Julio Morban and others.
I've worked closely with many of Lookout Landing 2.0's contributors but I had no idea what to expect from Stephen Cheatum aka ArrwCtchr. He applied to SB Nation before I was officially on board, and was referred to me by them as, basically, a guy who makes GIFs and might be willing to do some sort of "GIF of the Game" feature. OK, that could be cool. But then he debuted with a post that wasn't just GIFs, but GIFs used in a very interesting and entertaining way backed up by some writing chops I wasn't expecting. A couple weeks later he breaks out a 1,000-word exploration of Justin Smoak's swing adjustments. Awesome.
The FanPosts here may be best known for the Off-Topic threads, and lately for sea-townie's tremendous Beer Series Pairings, but one thing I'd love to see is more community members adding original Mariners content. That section of the site is completely underutilized as a platform for talented writers looking for a significant audience. Thumbs up to Pacific Northwestern Vagabond for his well-researched retrospective of obscure Mariner outfielder Butch Huskey. Great stuff!
- Justin Smoak and the Kinetic Chain by Stephen Cheatum
- The Lure of the Dinger by Patrick Dubuque
- The Dawn of a New Something by Nathan Bishop
- Six Minor Degrees of Brian Sweeney by Patrick Dubuque
- The Safeco Field Experiment by Scott Weber
More picks: 3/23-3/29