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Top 50 Mariner Moments, 2007: #35

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June 10th: JJ gets Terrmel Sledge to pop out, putting the finishing touches on his third consecutive one-run save against San Diego.

Box score & PBP

Game thread

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I rate this highly in honor of the fact that never again will I have to go to Petco Park and overhear the following conversation:

SD Fan 1: I can't believe we're losing to the Mariners.
SD Fan 2: It's not over yet. Who's their closer?
SD Fan 1: How the hell should I know?
PA Announcer: Now pitching for Seattle, #20, JJ Putz.
SD Fan 2: ahahahahaha
SD Fan 1: Putz!
SD Fan 2: You've gotta be kidding!
SD Fan 1: This guy's such a putz.
SD Fan 2: No way we don't come back against this guy.
SD Fan 1: LET'S-GO-PAD-RES!
SD Fan 2: Smash this putz!
SD Fan 1: ahahahhahahahah
SD Fan 1: putz

Instead - thanks to JJ - I expect to hear more of:

SD Fan 1: I can't believe we're losing to the Mariners.
SD Fan 2: It's not over yet. Who's their closer?
SD Fan 1: How the hell should I know?
PA Announcer: Now pitching for Seattle, #20, JJ Putz.
SD Fan 2:
SD Fan 1:
SD Fan 2: Oh yeah.
SD Fan 1: fuck all

Three straight games. Three straight one-run leads. Three straight saves. Over the weekend, JJ faced ten batters, of which five struck out, one walked, and zero hit the ball out of the infield. 31 of his 45 pitches were strikes. It was as dominant a weekend as a closer could ever have, and it was after Sledge's pop-out that I found myself standing slack-jawed in the left field bleachers, wondering if he'd ever make a mistake. It didn't even feel like such a thing was possible.

Slowly but surely, people are beginning to realize that JJ Putz is not a man to be laughed at. He's actually just the opposite.