Tonight was a meaningless baseball game for two teams whose seasons had already ended before tonight's start. The Mariners won this meaningless game. Kyle Seager, Yonder Alonso, and Jacob Hannemann hit home runs. Hannemann's 404 footer was his first at the major league level. Edwin Díaz pitched beautifully, Dan Altavilla less so.
I'm not sure what else there is to say. The ends of things have always made me melancholy, baseball seasons particularly so. Days, weeks, months, and years are often conceptually meaningless in our minds, but somehow the arbitrary time periods of sports seasons encourage us to consider the past with greater clarity.
Tonight, on the eve of our farewell to baseball, Andrew Albers lasts 4.1 innings and gives up three home runs; I watch him and recall his Mariners debut, on the Women in Baseball Night, when I looked around the 'Pen during the panel and felt an unequaled sense of pride and camaraderie. Mitch Haniger goes 5 for 5 tonight, but all I can think about is the game against Texas when Guillermo Heredia homered, and Haniger made a game-saving catch, and I believed in every choice I had made. Nelson Cruz waits at home plate for a victory hug, after Seager mashes a three-run homer, and I take a moment, amidst all this self-indulgent reflection, to appreciate that I've spent the past three years cheering for one of the most fun players in baseball. Alonso homers immediately after Seager, and I flash back to his home run on Lookout Landing Night, and the giddiness I felt in seeing my name on a list with Jerry Dipoto. It's the final series of the season, which prompts me to think about the first series of the season, when the Mariners crumbled against the Astros and I pondered the frivolity of baseball at my grandfather's bedside, as his rattling breaths fought to obscure the play-by-play.
Tonight wasn't a ball game that I'll remember for years to come, but my memories of these last six months will always be influenced by the memories of this baseball season.
Tomorrow night the 2017 Seattle Mariners will play their final game.