Many years ago, I spent a summer interning for a publishing house in San Francisco. It sounds incredibly cool, but let’s just say that I did not pursue work in that industry after I graduated the following year. The real highlight of that summer was living with my mom’s long-time (we’re talking 50-some years now) best friend, her husband and their precious six-year-old son. Outside of competitive cycling, they weren’t major sports fans but it was early in the Golden State Warriors dynasty, so everyone in the Bay Area was reasonably attuned to basketball. I, of course, could not tolerate the thought of a child raised without baseball, so began to
indoctrinate teach him about the game. He loved Buster Posey, and gleefully referred to the Mariners as “the Marinaras,” and when Franklin Gutiérrez hit a grand slam one afternoon I scooped him up and we spun around the kitchen shrieking with joy.
“That made you really happy!” he marveled, ever astute. Then he paused, a thoughtful look on his little face. “Go Marinaras!!” he bellowed.
On my last day that summer, I took them all to a Giants game - his first baseball game. I have no idea who they played, which team won, nor anything that happened on the field, but we sat way up high, with the wind whipping at our hair, and laughed and cheered until the very last out. It’s a memory I return to often, for both the warmth and love it brings me and the reminder that, records be damned, the game itself can still carry magic. This weekend, that little boy, always wise beyond his years, brought us all to tears with his speech as he became a Bar Mitzvah.
This is all a long-winded way of saying I’m sorry for the delay on this highly sought-after content.
Record for the week:
Goodness, it really didn’t feel like that.
Okay, it really did feel like that.
Player of the week:
Though he still had a bit of an up and down week, I’m giving this to Jesse Winker, who looked like he was enjoying himself on the field again for the first time since...the Twins series? Winker is, by all accounts, one of the most well-liked guys in the league and it’s been particularly hard to watch his affable face so visibly struggle. But his exceptionally poor fortunes seem to have made a turn for the better this last week, and he’s currently (as of 5/18) rocking a nine-game hit streak. It was particularly fun for him to right himself in New York, where he has a long history of goofing on Mets fans.
Play of the week:
Say what you will about Cal Raleigh’s struggles in the box (and we as a site really should dig into that some more, mental note to self), but he had a solid week behind the plate, including this extremely satisfactory play to get former AL West pest Mark Canha.
At-bat of the week:
A rare non-Mariners ABOW, but Pete Alonso’s ninth inning at-bat on Sunday was unequivocally the peak of this week. They intentionally walked Francisco Lindor to load the bases with two outs, and Diego Castillo v Pete Alonso was a matchup that made me nauseous even after I knew how the game ended. But Diego survived both the inning and Jesse Winker’s enthusiasm.
Nemesis of the week:
Mets fans who so voraciously booed the Mariners. They’re...the Mariners. Come on, honey.
Favorite Mariners content:
It hasn’t been often in the last two decades that the Mariners have had the opportunity to play the villains, but it’s so fun when they do. Kate Preusser wrote deliciously about baseball and wrestling and how good it can feel to be bad.
And, at the risk of being gratuitous in sharing my own work, a moment of appreciation for this community and the lively comment section of my piece on disappointment in the team’s front office. It was thoughtful, civil and engaging, and I’m always grateful for the conversations we’re able to have here (or, as is perhaps more often the case, the conversations I’m able to snoop on here).
Favorite thing I ate while watching/listening to a game:
The cold brew I drank during Saturday’s game. The coffee itself was nothing special, but for two glorious hours I got to sit by a pool in the 73 degree sunshine and it was transcendent. I get the appeal of California now.
Bold prediction for next week:
I feel foolish even thinking this, but will the Boston series be the one where the M’s offense gets their groove back? Between the opponent and the ‘lil bandbox field, it certainly seems like it could be...
At this point, the Mariners are two games in to a three-game series in Toronto, which will be followed up by four games in ye olde Fenway Park. Seattle has now dropped to fourth in the division, and they are, frankly, a little too close to the cellar-dwelling A’s record for my comfort. We’re approaching the tail end of May and though there’s still plenty of time left in the season, the M’s have done little to set themselves up for late-season success.
This week in Mariners history:
May 10, 2015. Of course it was against the A’s.