Yesterday the Seattle Mariners lost to the Texas Rangers and it was not awesome. But then tonight, the Seattle Mariners beat the Cincinnati Reds and it was awesome. In space of a traditional recap, I'm going to have brief conversations with all the Mariners who played in tonight's game, because I have a makeup 4th of July party to go to.
1. Brad Miller: Hi Brad. I love you. Here's the thing. We had a really good shortstop once, and then he left us for a bunch of money like we were just dirt in a bag. We try to make fun of him every time he comes back to town, but it doesn't really matter, because he went to a good team and even though he is kind of a jerk, history will say that he won this round. But see, this is where you come in. Tonight, you hit a leadoff triple--your career first--and followed it up in the 5th with another triple. You also don't wear batting gloves and look like you are playing baseball from 1859. See, when you want to get people to know who you are in this sport, you need two things: 1) a marketable tick, like wearing stirrups and long sleeve shirts, or a huge-ass batting helmet, or not wearing baseball gloves. 2) actually do stuff in the game. Tonight you did stuff, and it looks like you actually know how to do stuff. Please keep doing stuff. We love you.
2. Nick Franklin: Look, Nick, I don't know if Eric Wedge told you to stay in or if you were trying to be all tough, but cut it out. You hit a 2-run homer in the 1st inning to put the Mariners on the board, and Twitter blew up with people declaring this the official end of the Bavasi and Zduriencik car crashes. That might be hyperbole, but the point remains: We need you. Don't blow this. What are they gonna do, replace you with Dustin Ackley? You and Brad Miller, at least tonight, looked like the future a lot of us have been waiting for for a long time. We can live with 8 innings of replacement to have that.
3. Raul Ibanez: Its been a bit of a rocky road this season between us, but you know what? No hard feelings. You are doing some cool things this year, and the simple fact that you are on pace to beat a record set by Ted Freaking Williams is exciting, and there is a part of me that wouldn't even mind seeing you back next year, as long as you don't cost gobs of money. The reality is that you probably shouldn't be playing every single day like you have been, and today is a perfect example of that. You're old- you have aged like the finest of liqueurs and you don't pull out the most expensive bottle to drink from every night. There were no fireworks tonight, but I'm eying that expensive, shiny gold bottle on my shelf out of the corner of my eye. I'll see you in a couple of days. And when it happens, it's going to be wonderful.
4. Kendrys Morales: I don't know man, whatever.
5. Kyle Seager: I have a hard time getting excited about you anymore, Kyle, but not for the reasons you might think. See, you usually show up and hit a couple singles and dive to stop some gap hits each game. You've been consistently worth around 3 WAR as the Mariners' everyday third baseman--not bad for a 3rd round pick. Today you got outshone by some of the other young guys, but you still did some great stuff. Also don't leave.
6. Mike Zunino: Man, I'm not sure you should be here, and that opinion isn't shared by everyone. But you've put up well with a premature call-up, and you look a whole hell of a lot better behind the plate than Jesus Montero. You went 0-3 with a HBP tonight, but some of the other guys picked up the offensive slack. That's okay, because I think a lot of your impact tonight was felt in places that can't be easily measured or quantified- I'm sure if we talked to Aaron Harang, he would mention your pitch calls, your framing, your quick ability to get behind a sloppy pitch to stop it from going to the backstop. I think your bat is going to come around, and when and if it does, you are going to be a favorite of a lot of young Mariners fans. Till then, I'll take days like today.
7. Michael Saunders: I'm not sure who was happier to see your home run in the 2nd inning today, you, or those of us who have been patiently waiting for you to be the Condor we saw at the beginning of the season. You're kind of a mystery at times, and have shown some pretty bleak hitless streaks so far this season. But you've never looked totally lost, and moments like yours tonight help remind us that you have the ability to be right in the clubhouse with the rest of these young guys when they finally come around. No hard feelings about last night. Keep doing you.
8. Dustin Ackley: I only have one Mariners bobblehead, and it's you. Look, I'm just as frustrated as you are. But I'm just about ready to drop that thing off at Goodwill.
9. Aaron Harang: I hope you enjoyed your night, and I also hope that some club looks at you as a cheap pickup next year. Maybe they could sign you to a couple years/couple million, and you could round out a .500 club's rotation and put out a few more good years throwing baseballs in the major leagues. Tonight helped keep your name in the books- your 6 hits over 6 innings was manageable, but you put up a great 2.94 xFIP in your return to your former home ballpark. But seriously, I say again: I hope SOME OTHER TEAM signs you to a a couple years/couple million, and you could...
10. Endy Chavez: I still can't believe you are back on this team, and I have nothing else to say about it.
11. Yoervis Medina: Who came up with Funky Cold Medina anyway?
12. Charlie Furbush: Or "The Bush." I'm a fan of facial hair, but man...that's just something else. Still, it was great to see your two strikeouts tonight.
13. Oliver Perez: What are you? Your past two outings have been absolutely, violently dominant, and tonight was no exception. You struck out Jay Bruce, Todd Frazier, and Derrick Robinson on 11 pitches and got the save. A lot of people think you are going to be traded in a couple weeks here, and wherever you end up, you are going to go into the playoffs, I think. I'll miss you a bit, but not a ton, because who three years ago would have thought you would be a dominant late reliever? When you came to Seattle, I just kind of thought "oh...um...alright?" It's been fun. Go get a ring.
14. Shin-Soo Choo: Stop wearing a Reds uniform. What are you doing? Bavasi isn't here anymore. Come back. Please.