When considering the level of communication and contact that modern technology allows, it's somewhat remarkable that anyone messes up plans made in advance. In each of our hands, I'm assuming since you read this site, rests a device that can instantaneously shoot a beam of something to space only for it to return to Earth, delivering a message to someone anywhere else on the planet. Imagine trying to describe what smart phones do for us to someone who was panning for gold in the Yukon. They literally couldn't use the phone the frostbite would be so bad.
Despite this incredible level of interaction we are all now capable of, we all have friends who are rather flaky. See, ease of use does not translate to perfection of action. Sure, you made plans for happy hour on Wednesday two weeks ago, but guess what, Johnathon always has "something" coming up at work. We know the truth. He's just a little sleepy. We let ourselves get away with more social miscues due to ease. It's so simple to shoot off a text that says, "Next time I'll be there."
For the better part of six months I lived in Australia sans cell phone or really anything that could contact someone beyond words exchanged and made as plans. This was the way things used to work. If someone who had claimed they were showing up to an event didn't make it, we searched for them because they may have died. Well, if we were in those times, we would be scrambling all over Melbourne because the Mariners told us that they'd meet up with us at Dooley's Irish Bar three hours ago and I guarantee they are laying in a ditch somewhere near Footscray.
Tonight, faced with an opportunity to still win a series that would have monumentally positive effects on their season, the Seattle Mariners once again shied away in the limelight. Taijuan Walker, the only one of the "Big Three" currently pitching for the Big Squad, came up on the mound to right last nights loss. He failed to do so. Tai only lasted three full innings, giving up five earned runs on six hits while only striking out two. The real sore thumb is that he managed to give up three home runs in his three innings. This isn't the sort of team where "turning it over" to the bullpen results in a generally positive outcome and the M's were forced to do so with six innings left to play.
Four pitchers whom I learned existed less than a month ago pitched a cumulative third of this game. Between Tony Zych, Logan Kensing, Jose Ramirez, and J.C. Ramirez, three innings were pitched and only two more earned runs were given up. Perhaps this is a silver lining after all! It is something I believe I mentioned in a recap early on in April, but this season has really been a different vibe all the way through. When was the last time we had a squad with an overly potent offense and a pitching staff that just bled and bled and bled until there was nothing left? I remember hoping for a squad more on this side of things than what we once had. I don't know what I want anymore.
As seen above, Shawn O'Malley had a few nice plays in center field, but this may be due to the fact he was flanked by Stephen Romero and Mark Trumbo in a game with minor playoff implications. It's a confusing time of year. Some good news is that with the score at 8-4 in favor of the Rangers, Robinson Cano launched a ball over the wall with Romero on. For a few, fleeting moments in the 8th, it felt like we were in it just down by two. The shot was Cano's 15th, passing last years total and that has to be something nice to think about for a few seconds. Another interesting factoid would be that Mark Trumbo, Jesus Sucre, and Jesus Montero all chipped in with two-hit nights. You read that sentence in late September of 2015. The Trumbo Jumbo now has a 10-game hitting streak going.
Some bad news is that Safeco churned out a season-low attendance tonight just above thirteen-thousand. Also evidenced on the site here simply by game thread participation, people are tired. There's only so many times you can get another "maybe" from Johnathon and keep inviting him out. We get it, man. There's something else you'd rather be doing.
What I'm trying to get at is that the Seattle Mariners, if defined by one person in your phone book, is that person who is always a "maybe". They're a flake. Every time they come close to competing, they turn abruptly the other way. Of course, there is a minuscule chance they still make the playoffs and tie this series, but that's what there has always been. The entire season has been accompanied by the sound of the door in the hallway slowly squeaking shut. You could still make that elevator but you better sprint. Do you want to be that sweaty for your meeting?
You own a cell phone. Show up for something. We'd love to have you come and hang out.
(psst...we are not alone in terms of preseason World Series odds)
I miscounted and didn't realize the Padres were #10. So yep—7 of top 10 and 6 of top 8 will miss the playoffs. https://t.co/pgW13LD2dB— Colin O'Keefe (@colinokeefe) September 9, 2015