I’d like to start off with a tribute to one the greats who passed away Tuesday evening. We’ll miss your yogiisms and your fantastic baseballin’, Mr. Berra. RIP Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra #8.
The Yogi Berra quote above is something that I would like every Mariners fan to remember. As I’ve always said, baseball is about the experience and moments like the one I talk about below are what make a game, week, month or season memorable. I ask that you read these moments below and remember that we still have a week and some changes left to make more memories. I know Mariners baseball is almost finished for the year, but until then.. It ain’t over. Win or lose, enjoy it every last-minute you can. Yogi would want you to.
The second half of 2015 has been an odd one for the Mariners. August and September has seen the likes of Robinson Cano turning in the offense performance we’d hoped for all year, Nelson Cruz hitting his 40th, 41st AND 42nd home run(s) of the season and old faithful Kyle Seager has been Kyle freakin Seager and we love him. Second half ball has also seen the likes of Jack Zduriencik finally getting relieved of his duties (!!!!!). Believe me when I say that I am most DEFINITELY in the majority when I say this was a long overdue move by Mariners leadership. Who knew how the ending of that era would bring such relief and uncertainty at the same time? The answer is this: we all knew. Every last one of us. Jack Z got fired on August 29th, and the Mariners? Well the Mariners you see have gone 14-9, and if that is any indicator of our future without Jack Z, I am a damn happy woman.
With that being said, since we have approximately 10 games left in this season I’m going to talk about a few of the last few games these 2015 Mariners have played. This season has had it’s share of fun moments, but this last week has been FULL of the moments that give all the feels. Just for the hell of it, I’m gonna start off with September 16th, 2015 a.k.a (unofficial) Kyle Seager day.
September 16th, 2015 – Mariners v. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim:
As many probably remember, this is the day that our dearest of dears Kyle Seager got plunked in the back by Angels starting pitcher Jared Weaver. Weaver is then subsequently ejected by the home plate umpire. Within this whole episode Kyle decides to throw a couple of choice expletives at Weaver and my GOODNESS it was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. 99.999999999999% of the time, Kyle is a great person and professional. He does his job, does it well and does not seem to make a peep about it, and this team knows it. The look on every face on the Mariners bench when Seager got hit was all “COME AT ME BRO”. I loved that. Kyle dropped a whole lot of f-bombs at Weaver and that definitely made everyone’s inner five-year old jump with glee. However the point I am trying to make is that no matter many bummers this team/season has endured (getting intentionally HBP for example), this team always has seemed to be there for each other. It is easier to have team spirit when you’re winning (like we have been the past month or so), but it’s extra special to have it while you’re losing (like we have the majority of the season). I’ve said it before and i’ll say it again… This team is special, and if there is anything that they know how to do – it’s stand up for each other in the good times AND the bad. Except next time Kyle gets hit (intentionally as hell) that bench better be empty. Here’s a picture of Nelson slamming his bat straight in the ground:
I’d imagine that went something like this…
Kyle: *Walks away* Handle my light work, Nelly.
Nelson: *Imagining his bat is pounding Weaver’s head into the ground* NO HURT SEAGER, GRRR.
FINAL SCORE: Mariners 3, Angels 1
September 20th, 2015 – Seattle Mariners at Texas Rangers
This is another one of my favorites from the week. We clinched a series win against a Texas team that had just claimed the AL West title from the Houston Astros (hahahahaha). Hey, if the Mariners aren’t making the playoffs this year I’m okay with them being a spoiler for the AL West. However I’m still unerringly hopeful for them to make the playoffs by divine baseball gods of Yogi Berra intervention. In all reasonable probability, we will not be playing after October 4th, but I am a Mariners fan and “reasonable” is not a word in our vocabulary.
This game was enjoyable for many reasons: we walloped the Rangers 9-2, one of my family members is a devout Rangers (and Cowboys fan but that is a WHOLE different story) and I am thoroughly delighted every time we beat Texas. Also because it was #FelixDay and watching Felix and Adrian Beltre playfully bicker all game should be reason enough to watch a Felix/Texas match up.
Felix had just fielded Beltre’s comebacker and proceeded to throw the ball back to him. The expressions on everyone’s (including Beltre’s) face is downright comical. Makes you wanna snap your fingers and say, “oh NO he didn’t!” Needless to say, Felix was good enough. Except that scary moment where he exited the game for “precautionary” reasons on his elbow. Luckily, unlike many other Felix starts, the boys put on a bat show and got him enough run support to exit the game comfortably with a 5-0 lead. Kyle Seager was his usual self “deeeeep in the heart of Texaaaaas” (no really if you look at his numbers in Texas, he’s the next triple crown winner) and went 3-5 with a 2-run RBI double in the 5th and Franklin Gutierrez and Robbie Cano hit back to back home runs. That was fun boys, that was fun.
FINAL SCORE: Mariners 9, Rangers 2
September 22nd, 2015 – Seattle Mariners at Kansas City
Another offensive out pour is what makes this a memorable game for me. 5 home runs hit by Mariners batters. FIVE. Robinson Cano had two, including an absolute bomb for his longest home run since 2013. Kyle Seager hit another home run, 25th on the season (tying his career mark), and Brad Miller and Jesus Montero added to the home run barrage. It was almost like the pre-season predictions were coming true right before our eyes, but the difference is that is late September and not April 8th *cue the violins*. Nonetheless, you can tell that there is nothing but fun times on that field. We are in a good place right now, and I know to the cynics out there it may seem like this is the same old spiel. Good things are coming, and that is something that I firmly believe. If you don’t believe me here is a distraction of a couple of grown men hitting a ball with a piece of wood, and me celebrating it because it is really hard to hit a tiny white ball 400+ feet, okay.
FINAL SCORE: Mariners 11, Royals 2
September 23rd, 2015 – Seattle Mariners at Kansas City
Robinson Cano gets his 2,000th career hit. Not an easy thing to do, and a feat that 85% (this is by no means an accurate number, just know most players don’t have successful 10year+ careers) of players will never accomplish. This career milestone coming the same season he became the first player to hit 30 doubles in their first 11 seasons. Nice job Robbie *Lloyd McClendon voice*. If you forgot about this commercial from the beginning of the year, here ya go. We salute you.
This game ended in a loss, but if you remember anything the great Yogi Berra taught us… No matter how much you want to give up hope on the team, the season or what have you, remember that it’s not over until its over. #GoMariners
FINAL SCORE: Kansas City 4, Seattle 3 (10)