[Ed. note: The next few series promise to be especially tough for the Mariners, not just because they play teams with good records, but because we hate some of these teams oh-so-very-much. From the “ugh, you guys again?” Astros to the
Yankees Aaron Judge and His Band of Bailiffs to the RED SAWX fans who crawl out of their chain Irish bars every summer to invade Safeco like nasally cicadas, levels of insufferableness promise to be at dangerously high levels over the next ten days or so; make sure you slather yourself in smug repellant before going outside this week. To really lean into the spirit of this, we at LL are doing “Hate Week.” Trades we’ve hated, players we’ve hated, aspects of baseball we are currently hating, nothing but a pure tidal wave of hatred. Misery loves company, so we invite you to get involved, as well, with your own spin on “Hate Week” in the FanPosts section. LLet the hate flow through you.]
Subject: How dare you?
Once upon a time, there was a happy little AL West division: Seattle, Oakland, Los Angeles/Anaheim/the pit in Southern California, and Arlington. It was kind of weird for a Texas team to be in the West, but at least Arlington is in a more Northern part of the state. While things expanded rapidly around the rest of the league, we kept it small, just the four of us. Then, in 2011, you let Jim Crane buy the then-NL Central Houston Astros, and two years later you allowed those same Astros to invade our division.
Houston is not west. Houston is more latitudinally similar to Kansas City, or the Twin Cities than it is to anywhere along the west coast.
Up until 1994, the Astros were in the NL West. While still not geographically appropriate, this was an acceptable solution, and is realistically where the Astros belong now. Let the Dodgers and Diamondbacks (??) feast on them for a while, and give the AL West the Padres. We've already been playing ridiculous "rival" games with them for years anyway.
At first, having Houston is our division was kind of fun, and silly. They were the Lastros, the guaranteed cushion at the bottom of the division. Then they revamped their front office, and started to become annoying. Like the small flies that buzz around your favorite hole-in-the-wall barbecue joint that almost certainly paid off its health inspector, the Astros became bothersome in 2015, but our own team was such a disaster that we didn't pay them much attention. In 2016 they were besieged by injuries and bad luck, but still managed to screw the Mariners over time and again. And in 2017? Ugh, I'm not even going to deign to discuss how horrid Houston and their dollhouse stadium has been. In overall games against Houston, Seattle has their lowest franchise winning percentage against any American League team, save for the large sample size Red Sox.
Not only are the Astros obnoxious to play, the schedule, thanks to you, is designed to ensure that we somehow manage to play them all. The. Time. How dare you inflict this locust-like team upon us?
A cranky M's fan
P.S. It's also exceptionally rude that your old Seattle Pilots team is leading the NL Central, and that this formerly bankrupt team now employs ex-Mariner/Korean "God" and current Very Fun Baseball Masher, Eric Thames.
P.P.S. Thanks for all the extra playoff spots now, though. We're going to try and take advantage of them this year.
*Allan, not Bud, because we sure as heck aren't buddies