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Around the seventh inning or so, I started preparing to write an intro to this post wherein I'd talk about how pathetic it is that I've already gotten accustomed to these frustrating losses. This was an awful, awful game, but almost certainly due to experience, I was over it before it even ended. It's sad, because the Mariners are still 12 over .500 and chasing the slumping Angels, but they've lost so often in recent years that it doesn't take much for me to slide right back into that comfortable, familiar numbness of despair. That's what I felt for a few innings tonight.

And then Eric God damn Gagne had to go and suck for once to keep me from having a standard peaceful evening. Nevermind the Pythagorean implications; I would always much rather lose by four than by one, because when you lose by one, in the end you're invariably left wondering how it might've been different had you not completely wasted a golden opportunity with the bases loaded in the first, or been CAUGHT NAPPING OFF FIRST BASE FOR THE LAST OUT OF THE FREAKING GAME. Richie Sexson's home run turned this from a game in which the Mariners were outclassed to a game they should've won but didn't, and that just makes it harder for us to swallow. Now this is going to be one of those days we reflect on at the end of the season if we miss out on the playoffs by one or two games. We already had enough of those, dammit. If you're going to lose, lose convincingly. It's easier on everyone.

(Jose Lopez is a fool. Could our middle infield be in a bigger tailspin right now? .258/.291/.323 combined since June 1st. Aside from the walk-off hit against Boston, I can't remember the last good thing either of these guys has done.)

Biggest Contribution: Jose Vidro, +20.3%
Biggest Suckfest: Ho, -40.0%
Most Important At Bat: Sexson funk blast, +11.9%
Most Important Pitch: Sosa homer, -23.3%
Total Contribution by Pitcher(s): -36.3%
Total Contribution by Position Players: -13.7%
Total Contribution by Opposition: 0.0%

(What is this chart?)

Texas Rangers announcers Josh Lewin and Tom Grieve recap tonight's ballgame:

Lewin: Fun contest tonight between the Rangers and those Mariners from Seattle.
Grieve: You know what I like about Seattle?
Grieve: That Space Needle.
Grieve: Get to the top and you're practically having dinner on the moon.
Lewin: I was thinking about the moon just the other day.
Grieve: It's been a bright one lately.
Lewin: What's the Spanish word for moon? 'Lunes'?
Grieve: I think that's Monday. It's 'lun-'...'lun-'something. 'Luna.' It's 'luna.'
Lewin: That's right, 'la luna', the moon. Like 'lunar'. It's not one of those weird masculine-feminine-sounding Spanish nouns, is it?
Grieve: I don't think so. 'La luna' sounds all right to me.
Lewin: Yeah well that Carrie Underwood sounds all right to you too, so we can't really put stock in that.
Grieve: Haha!
Lewin: Incidentally I heard this song the other day, 'Whine Up', by Kat Deluna or something or other.
Grieve: Is that so?
Lewin: Yeah, I was in the store with my daughter. Really catchy, one of those songs that just makes you move you know?
Grieve: So what is that, 'Kat Moon'? 'Kat of the Moon'?
Lewin: Yeah, 'Kat of the Moon', I guess.
Grieve: You can get some wild names down there. de la Rosa, del Toro, de la Fuente...
Lewin: What would you do if I came to work one day as Josh of the Mountains?
Grieve: I'd wonder how this guy I'd never heard of got into the booth!
Lewin: Haha!
Grieve: Kat of the Moon.
Lewin: What was it that jumped over the moon? The spoon?
Grieve: No, the spoon ran away with the dish, didn't it?
Lewin: Wasn't that a movie? Way back when, The Dish and the Spoon? Something like that. One of those short films, short animated films from back in the 30s or 40s.
Dead Air:
Dead Air:
Lewin: Couldn't be the spoon. How would a spoon jump? 'Spoon' rhymes with 'moon'.
Grieve: Wasn't it the cow? The cow jumped over the moon?
Lewin: Yeah, the cow! The cow jumped over the moon. Ah baby mystery solved, haha!
Grieve: I remember when I was a kid I used to wonder why a cow would ever jump over the moon.
Lewin: Maybe he just wanted to get a closer look at all that cheese.
Grieve: You know who makes good cheese is Wisconsin. Back when I played I'd always look forward to those games in Milwaukee because there was some good cheese wherever you turned. Cheese and sausage.
Lewin: It's a wonder you were able to maintain your girlish physique.
Grieve: I'm telling you, I always hit well in Milwaukee, too. I always hit there, but then when they'd come to Texas I could never do anything, because it was like, where's the cheese! I miss the cheese!
Lewin: Haha, the things that ballplayers think about.
Grieve: Something about that stuff just elevated my game. I probably could've played longer if I ended up in Milwaukee, just because I'd have been happier, you know? I always hit well there, I could've extended my career. Being happy, being content, it can keep a player going.
Lewin: Yeah, I hear you. Y'know, that Kat Deluna-
Lewin: That song, 'Whine Up'. That doesn't make sense, does it?
Lewin: I mean I was talking to my daughter about this, apparently the whole song's about a dance. But 'whine', y'know, that doesn't refer to any kind of movement or dance that I know of.
Lewin: Maybe she didn't want to infringe on Gwen for 'Wind It Up', I dunno. Similar themes, I guess, but I'm sure Gwen would've understood.
Grieve: Why don't you ask our guy working the seats?
Lewin: That's a great idea, let's go right to him. Hello? Hey?
Guy Working The Seats: Hey Josh, Tom, it just so happens that I'm here with a group of high schoolers who came down to Arlington to celebrate summer vacation!
High Schoolers: :assorted screams:
Guy Working The Seats: I've been talking to them about the conversation you guys were just having and it seems one of them might have an answer for you. Becky?
Becky: :screams:
Guy Working The Seats: So what's this 'Whine Up' thing all about, anyway?
Becky: Ohmygod 'Whine Up' is like the baddest summer beat everrrrrrrrr!! and I love you Kat Deluna!! Me and my friends whenever the song comes on we're like "Oh my God!! Yeahhhh!!!" :assorted screams:
Guy Working The Seats: So it's this big hit now?
Becky: Ohmygod, it's like you do this dance, and it's to the song, and it's just the best!
Lewin: Well there we go.
Grieve: There's your answer, 'Whine Up' is a big hit.
Lewin: I'll have to learn that dance and bring it to the booth sometime.
Lewin: Air guitar Jerry Remy eat your heart out!
Grieve: Haha!
Lewin: I was talking to Jerry just the other day, and I asked him, "how come people still call Boston 'Beantown'?"
Lewin: Nobody really thinks 'beans' anymore when they think about Boston.
Grieve: "SamAdamstown" doesn't really have a good ring to it.
Lewin: Not only isn't it relevant anymore, but I'm pretty sure "Beantown" has its origins back in the slave trade. That molasses Boston was getting in the triangular trade, y'know, they'd cook beans in it, and I think that's where "Beantown" got started.
Lewin: Doesn't that just - isn't that something you'd think they'd want to distance themselves from?
Grieve: Well at some point I think things are just set in stone. Nobody thinks about why they call it Beantown, they just call it Beantown.
Lewin: Like the New York Metropolitans, I suppose. The name isn't really current, but no one has a problem with it.
Grieve: Of course I doubt many people even know it's the Metropolitans, I think people just know them as the Mets.
Lewin: So what do you call people from Beantown? Beaners? That hardly seems appropriate.
Grieve: I think we just lost half our audience, haha!
Lewin: You know what drives me crazy about those baked beans?
Grieve: The meat.
Lewin: The meat!
Grieve: That meat is...man, it's something.
Lewin: All the little tins of baked beans say "real meat inside" and then it's like, that little chunk of pork that's a terrible cut.
Lewin: Is it there for flavor? Tradition? Is it like Beantown, where it's been accepted for so long that you can't change it anymore?
Grieve: I always just pick it right out. I don't know anyone who actually eats that little bit of meat.
Lewin: I'm going to start my own baked beans company. They're going to come in jars, not tins, because nobody likes using can openers anymore. And the jars are going to say "no meat inside at all," because I think the meatless baked beans market needs to be tapped into. There's potential there.
Grieve: I know I'd buy a few jars. As long as you didn't do anything to them!
Lewin: Haha! No, they'd be terrific baked beans.
Lewin: Real baked beans with secret hobo spices.
Grieve: You've got my mouth watering already. I guess that'll have to be an offseason job.
Lewin: I'm going to do it, I'm going to make baked beans.
Lewin: Some people brew their own beer, I'm going to make my own meatless baked beans.
Grieve: I hope this doesn't go anything like your last project. The neighbor's kid is still picking splinters out of his leg!
Lewin: Haha! No, this one's legit.
Grieve: Too legit?
Lewin: Too legit.
Lewin: And the Rangers beat Seattle 8-7.

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Doubleheader tomorrow, with Feierabend/Rheinecker going at 2:05pm and then Feierabend promptly getting demoted in time to activate Mark Lowe for the second game, which'll be started by Jarrod Washburn. I've always held out a little hope that Texas' starter in the second game - Kam Loe - would turn into Jake Westbrook, but instead it appears that Jake Westbrook has turned into Kam Loe, which is good news for the Mariners' playoff hopes but bad news for my wanting to see more extreme groundballers getting a little respect. Turns out that when people say you need to know how to miss bats, they're not messing around.