A spring that began with such promise has taken a nasty turn, as the Mariners sealed their third consecutive Cactus League loss on Friday afternoon by falling 3-1 to the Reds. The game only took 136 minutes, as opposed to the normal 180 or so, but while fast baseball can be fun baseball, this was miserable baseball, because not only did it not matter for a hill of beans, but to me those 136 minutes felt more like 136 Julian years. People will argue that baseball is a game meant for the radio, and I'm not saying they're wrong, but baseball is not a game meant for the radio when you're just sitting down doing nothing. Baseball on the radio should be enjoyed either (A) while doing stuff around the house, (B) while driving in the car, or (C) while at the very least sitting next to a fire that you occasionally poke with a thing. Maybe I should have driven around.
This game was too dull for a bunch of bullet points, so let's see what I've got. Once again, there's no big story, but the biggest story would be Doug Fister kind of scuffling, I guess. Fister threw strikes but allowed too many hits in three innings, and says that his release point isn't where he wants it to be just yet. That's nothing to worry about now, and honestly it wouldn't be anything to worry about in two or three weeks, but what it is is a sentence with words.
Aaron Laffey made his debut in the sixth and threw a scoreless inning against five players who have never played in the Major Leagues, working around a well-hit double and a hit batter. I'm trying not to read too much into the PITCHfx data right now since I don't know if it's trustworthy and it's too early in camp for pitchers to be at 100%, but it's worth noting that Laffey was throwing so slow that Gameday classified almost all of his fastballs as sliders. It's also worth noting that one of these two players has a last name of Laffey:
Josh Lueke worked a flawless inning, getting two grounders and a strikeout. The work at the plate was just depressing, as the Mariners pounded out all of five hits and zero walks. Dontrelle flipping Willis even threw two perfect innings, which should tell you something about the bats this afternoon. What a show.
In the top of the seventh, the Mariners replaced four players with two Mikes and two Joshes. In the bottom of the seventh, the Reds replaced two players with two Devins. That was seriously one of the most interesting parts of the game.
Back at work again tomorrow, again at 12:05, again on 710. It's Erik Bedard and the Mariners against Jeanmar Gomez and the Indians. A good nickname for Jeanmar Gomez would be "Pants Ocean". Jeanmar "Pants Ocean" Gomez, that's what I say.