This is a blog where people can talk about the Seattle Mariners. If you are not interested in talking about the Seattle Mariners, feel free to venture out to other places on the internet or even LL's off-topic thread of the moment if you wish to discuss non-Mariner topics with other Mariner fans. If you are, however, here to read the recap of tonight's game, please continue to do so, below:
Well, today the Mariners lost, and they lost hard, hard, hard. They lost like when you first start skateboarding--or think you can skateboard--and you go up on the big bendy wood ramp thing and then you fall and hit your face and there's blood everywhere, and you go home and your mom is like WHAT WERE YOU THINKING and you're like I'LL BE FINE I SWEAR but you won't, not at least until another few years pass until you can actually do this shit safely with practice and protective gear because you're 12 years old and go inside and play video games or something, for crying out loud.
No, today the Mariners were tied and then they were losing and then they were tied and then they really, really, really lost--I mean bad. The game sat tied at three from the fourth inning through the next three hours, and then it got bleak, and it got bleak fast. So fast, in fact, that I don't even want to talk about it. But I have to talk about it, because I like baseball, and the Mariners are my local connection to the sport at its highest level. In addition, people on this site are true fans, not of the bandwagon type. You know, none of those losers over at twitter dot com, or anything like that.
So what did I end up doing? I crowdsourced this mess. I decided that we are going to share recap duties on this, one of the stupidest baseball games of the year. It wasn't only going to be my words describing Mike Montgomery lasting only four innings with five hits, three runs and four walks today. No, because today I planned to spend Saturday night with the Mariners--(but) instead they played while I was at work, found a spectacular new way to lose, and now all I have is a beer. A beer to tide me over to the fact that this team blew a chance to WILD PITCH THE WINNING RUN ACROSS THE PLATE and instead lost by EIGHT an inning later. That doesn't make any sense, except it totally does. I mean, these are the Mariners, after all. So I let the collected community of LL help me describe this madness.
So, okay, let's see here. Today Mike Montgomery managed to kind of settle in and do his thing, throwing a whopping eight pitches in the first before running into a reviewed tag play on a third-out pickoff throw to first to end the second inning. The pickoff, which nabbed a walking Adrian Beltre thanks to the dutiful hand of Jesus Sucre, took something like eighteen minutes to review, leaving Montgomery out there naked and alone and very curious what why something that appeared so obvious even to ROOT's cameras was taking so long to verify. But alas, time, accuracy, runs, outs--all numbers. Who really gives a shit in the end anyway?
The out was finally called, and MiMo escaped to the third without a single hit given up, which was great. He's only been on this team for a few months now, after the surprisingly equal Erasmo Ramirez trade, and although he's been here a while, (he) seems to like stirring pots. It's a great place to be when you're keeping runners off base, but then suddenly, with three runs across the board, you have to realize that even the luckiest rookie's luck is going to run out, eventually. Here's what the fourth inning looked like--not the strike zone, not the infield. Just the stuff that happened, terrifyingly, horribly, so bad that it makes you want to seek a reply, fail(ed) because you've been watching the 2015 Seattle Mariners. If only you knew better, friend.
Yikes. But then, surprisingly, the Mariners got all 3 back only a brief moment later. Nelson Cruz had opened the game with what is now his 18th-consecutive game with a hit, which, holy shit, talk about a reply fail during last season's free agency period by Jack Z. But alas, here we were, in the fourth inning, watching baseballs leave the left hand of Rangers' starter Martin Perez.
First, a double by the hot bat of Nelson Cruz. And, I mean, seriously, let's talk about this for a second:
nelsun crooze is gud pic.twitter.com/bgDvEdwKP2— Jose Rivera (@notjoserivera) August 8, 2015
Do you realize just how insane this is? A Seattle Mariner, in a lost season, has been hitting .428 for nearly a month with 11 home runs. He's done all this despite having very little run support or "lineup protection," and he continues to show no signs of aging or slowing down despite being on absolutely the wrong side of 30. If he was even giving half of what he has given this season, his contract may be a bargain, and with first base ostensibly open for a returning Mark Trumbo, Cruz could slot in as the most successful DH this franchise has seen since Edgar Martinez, right in time for a rebouncing team to take efficiency on as a mantra in a matter of months with no extra money spent whatsoever. Dear Penthouse Forum: I never thought I'd be writing to you like this. I can't stop thinking about Nelson Cruz.
But alas, it wasn't all Nelly providing a punch in the fourth, even though I'd take nine of his at-bats one after the other. They've done studies on the Mariners you know--they say that 70% of the time they lose...every time. Well just tell that to Robinson Cano and Jesus Montero, who hit back-to-back singles to put the Mariners on the board for a run, which was quickly followed up by Mark Trumbo's first sacrifice fly as an M (holy shit um, oh no) and the tying run off the bat of Brad Miller a second later. And right then, the Safeco crowd went wild--violently cheering a lost cause like a capsized ship that managed to save one, two, three rescue boats in the midst of the madness. And I can hear you, I know.
And look, You're right. Nobody should ever support their team when they're not in a playoff race. How utterly silly we are! See, it was just after this moment here that Lloyd decided to pull Montgomery despite the fact that he had only thrown 82 pitches and it was the fifth inning. His rocky fourth certainly had something to do with it, but after a quick minute--and a surprisingly successful outing from the recently shaky David Rollins, Lloyd was already down a reliever, and it was looking dicey as ever for the rest of the game. But how many more innings would they be able to pull out of a top hat like a rabbit?
Despite all of this, one fact remains: the bullpen continues to be a concern. Even when we realize that, put it in our notebooks and make sure we remember it, it would do good to tell ourselves that That's good to know. I was also trolling my own use of numbers--I've actually been lurking for over a year now and it's really one of the best communities you can find anywhere. Which, ha, what a hilarious thing to say about the Mariners bullpen. OF COURSE we should be worried about inning numbers. OF COURSE it isn't one of the best communities, although you can bet Tom makes a good whiskey sour now and then. Something in this might be disingenuous, but here we are regardless.
The next couple of innings were nothing doing, although thankfully Mayckol Guaipe delivered a pretty solid seventh inning after Rollins was relieved of duty. And then, the Mariners were given one of their best shots to capitalize on something to break the tie and take the series from the Rangers. Mark Trumbo lead off the inning with a walk once Rangers' starter Martin Perez was replaced by Sam Dyson, who promptly found trouble locating the strike zone despite the fact that the person at the plate had walked only 21 times before on the entire season. Now, although a lesser manager might have used an actual outfielder to pinch-run for Trumbo, McClendon's game management genius suffers no such limitations. Of course, a lesser manager might also have simply started Smith in LF, failing to appreciate the creative genius of filling the outfield with infielders.
That is why seconds after Trumbo's walk, Lloyd threw Logan Morrison out there to run for Trumbo, meaning he would finish the game in right field while Seth Smith, pinch hitting for Jesus Sucre would sneak his way into the lineup in the eighth after the Mariners once again failed to score a run, putting Brad back at short and benching Marte in a game that might have been nice to see a few more at-bats. And you had to wonder what was going on there, in the box next to the broadcasters containing a shining bald head of the bureaucrat font-criticizer. One, next to it, probably had someone hopped up on Coors Light wearing a bib of nachos while screaming AND IF YOU EVER PUT YOUR DAMN HANDS ON MY WIFE AGAIN, I'll...and yet right next to them was The Man, hoping equally for traffic to clear out before the ensuing Taylor Swift concert and for his latest prospect to do something despite being benched only seconds earlier.
You see, Jack Z believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter--tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther...and one fine morning, we will all end up face down in a swimming pool while that ominous wooden optometrist's sign swings in the early breeze, whispering, like the Great Leader himself once said, you're fired. It was only a dream, and although he may have something else to say about himself, the truth of the matter is that 3/22 is all that is required to make a horrible baseball game. Just ask Chone Figgins, Jack.
Still, it was here the ninth inning, and the Mariners had nothing doing. Fernando Rodney surprisingly escaped the eighth inning while only allowing a single baserunner, and there was no stress, literally no stress! I realize that's almost as insane as saying something like CapSea is the most handsome member of Lookout Landing, but you have to trust me here that this actually happened. So on to the ninth they marched, but then, there--down the path they walked, blissfully unaware of the nightmare around the corner.
In fact, once they headed to extras, you kind of had to expect something at least palatable. Tolerable. Acceptable. Instead, what we got was this:
Yes, that. For you see, The Mariners opened the tenth with a towering warning track fly ball from Seth Smith, straight into the awaiting arms of Rangers' rookie Ryan Strausborger, and whatever, this stupid team is cursed and whatever. But then--something changed--and for one moment, a moment as thin as the threads of ethereal hope that are currently (barely) holding Guti's hobbled frame together, the moment where a falling fly ball clanked impotently off Stausborger's glove, Mariners fans felt a fleeting hope.
Smith was on base! A chance to walk it off like they had been waiting for since forever! A chance to win it! And then they quickly struck out. Yep, two quick outs, to all but ruin Smith's chance to score. If you can believe it, well then Yup, you're a Mariner fan. (Your(e) supposed to say "I know.") Honestly though, It was really something else, and while even this luck doesn't quite add up to wins (No! It makes dollars!), it, I guess, adds up to an encouraging situation every now and then, with your one good guy on and your two good guys swinging at nothing in particular. It could have been your new rookie OBP guy, but hell, when you run your bench out in the seventh, you don't really have much to answer for now do you? Sometimes all you really need is Ketel Marte, but this time the Mariners could only offer Mike Zunino.
Then, there, with two outs and one on, at Safeco field, Rangers' manager Jeff Banister decided to intentionally walk Nelson Cruz. And then intentionally walk Robinson Cano. In a tie game. In extras. On the road. Justin Smoak may be hitting Grand Slams on a playoff bound Blue Jays club, but with both of those players earning hot, fresh Seattle dollars we have to, each of us, convince ourselves: We won the trade!
Suddenly the bases were loaded, and there he was, newly rejuvenated and redeemed Jesus Montero, stepping to the plate to win the got dang game for the Seattle Mariners of Washington State and to seal his career once and for all as the savior of the people.
He watched as a ball sailed past him, out of the strike zone. Working the count, he thought to himself, ready for his moment of glory. And then, needlessly, on a ball at the edge of the plate, Montero swung like a furious kumquat (In that he did not, because kumquats don't swing). 1-1.
But still, it was going to be the most beautiful moment of the season but well, you see, Harry Chapin wrote a wonderful song once, and he called (it) "30,000 pounds of bananas." The song is 11 minutes long, because he doesn't know how to end it. In fact he creatively extends the song in new and interesting ways, to take it to 11. Just like the Mariners today. They didn't know how to end it, but somehow took it to 11 in spite of themselves. Jesus Montero did not win the game for the Seattle Mariners.
But first, poor sandy.hawkins.583 was watching all this madness, apparently popping vicodin or something, taking place in the worst case of Audience participation since 10 cent beer night back in the good ol disco days. For you see, poor sandy recalls that (they) were somewhere outside of the 10th inning, on the edge of Safeco when the drugs began to take hold. She says, "I remember saying something like: I feel a bit lightheaded. Maybe you should watch. Suddenly there was a terrible roar all around us, and the sky was full of what looked like huge bats, all swooping and screeching and diving around our seats, and a voice was screaming; Holy Jesus. What are these goddamn animals? Huh! Huh! Huh! Fucking seagulls."
She continues: "Uh...Never mind. It's your turn to recap. No point in mentioning these seagulls, though. The poor bastards will see them soon enough." Poor Sandy was only 47 years of age, and if it wasn't the constant threat of the seagulls finally getting to her, it was Jesus Montero, up to bat with the bases loaded, needing only a passed ball to win the game. Of course, that didn't happen. "There's always the 11th," Montero thought, as he watched strike three sail past his knees. The Mariners would give up eight runs seconds later. Even the birds were upset, Kyle Seagull few alway and never came back. There is no point to any of this.
Seconds later, The Rangers brought the score to eleven in the eleventh, and even No. 11 couldn't work his miracles on this one. That's because Intentionally given the chance to win in the 10th, (the) Mariners eight away by the Rangers in the 11th, and the whole intentional walk thing....worked. I mean, can you believe it? Apparently good teams intentionally walk the winning run to this base, but the Mariners decided it would be much more fun to let the rangers score eight runs off the arm of Rob Rasmussen, who, whatever it was a nightmare you weren't even watching anymore now were you.
You really had to ask yourself, ask everyone at that moment: Why are you guys still invested in this team? I mean, I don't blame those who have given up. The season was over a month ago. Actually, I believe the season ended when Cruz hit a home run 50 straight games at the beginning of the season, and we did nothing with that (note:??????????) I know everyone here likes the game of baseball, but only sadists would continue to watch this snuff film over and over again (other note: dude fuck, I'd love to stop but this is my job, jerk). Go outside, get some ice cream, play with your children, visit your parents, find a new hobby, get shit-faced, have fun (yet another note:FFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUU).
Some might argue--Why did you post on this site that supports a team you are saying we are too invested in? Well, it's because we watch, we still watch despite knowing it's only digging our own graves in the before we even expire. But yet...there, in the end, we were left only with the futile struggle, and broken dreams. It was over, and to be honest, to tell you the whole stupid truth of the thing--the most damning thing of all is, I think I can live with it, and if I had to do it all over again, I would. Except for Skeebs' blueberry scone thing.
Special thanks to everyone who commented to help me write this recap, which ended up being 3,000 words and I'll never do this again, but it's precisely this kind of thing you do when your team is bad. That's We Can't Suck Forever, alchemist muffin, FlannelBacon, PyramidHeadFeveisen, The Typical Idiot Fan, David Skiba, cornholethatdog, Chris Strickley, Pacific Northwestern Vagabond, ChristianMoak, SheerApplesauce, Andrew_Rice, M'sFanatic, beastwarking, KumaSmash, CapSea, newday98074, Hey guess? mmm... on tare 0.63 (what the fuck?), Jared S, BurienBochte, sandy.hawkins.583 (hope you're okay), kathow, Absent9Times, ThundaPC (where you been?), Drunk Viking, and zipper7. I should have just written 500 words with some screengrabs.