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9/30: Open Game Thread

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First Pitch: 7:05pm PDT

OAKLAND ATHLETICS           SEATTLE MARINERS

                    

Ellis 2B Ichiro RF Kendall C Betancourt SS Kotsay CF Ibanez LF Chavez 3B Sexson 1B Kielty RF Beltre 3B Payton LF Dobbs DH Hatteberg DH Lopez 2B Johnson 1B Bubela CF Scutaro SS Wilson C ----------                  ----------

Saarloos (10-8, 4.10)       Moyer (12-7, 4.41)

Chalk Kirk Saarloos up as one of my guys most likely to take a huge ERA hit in 2006. Groundball rate and home ballpark aside, you can only keep a 4.10 ERA with as many walks as strikeouts for so long before bad things start happening.

But who the hell cares about Kirk friggin' Saarloos? Today's our chance to give one final sendoff to Dan Wilson, whose nice guyness should earn him one hell of an ovation. He was a rare breed of catcher, developing quickly and stalling at 28, a guy who was underrated in his brief peak and overrated for the rest of his career. But none of that matters now, not tonight - regardless of what Wilson may or may not have contributed to this team over the past few years, he was always a great, loyal person who loved Seattle, and who deserves the love he gets in return. Just like when Ichiro broke Sisler's record about a calendar year ago, I'll be standing and clapping in my dorm room.

LET'S GO MARINERS!