The regular season kicks off, but the Mariners have already suffered multiple casualties.
Our trip around the big-league divisions continues with a look at the top prospects of the AL West.
Offering at least one reason to tune in to each potentially talent-challenged team when you’re flipping through your MLB.tv options this season.
David Robertson battles a staircase while other players nurse their respective wounds.
A.J. Burnett finds out just what it means to be a pirate, a couple players go under the knife, and various other injuries around spring training.
Two AL West veterans are feeling the effects of age, but only one seems resigned to his fate.
Which teams are likely to see significantly more production from their new players at positions in need of improvement?
What kind of production do teams receive from players tabbed to replace superstars?
Non-roster invitees are swarming to spring training, but do these players ever pan out? Ben looks for an answer in the best of last season’s NRI crop
Which outfielders and DHs proved to be the biggest black holes in the majors?
Which men of misery prevented their teams from escaping the murky waters of suckitude?
Getting accurate injury information is about as easy as getting good seafood in Indianapolis, so adding in language barriers, time zone calculations, and trying to figure out the vagaries of international calling on my cell phone makes things especially challenging. So went the quest to find out the status of Mariners reliever Kazuhiro Sasaki.
Watching the Mariners crawl their way toward respectability like the first fishes onto the world’s beaches, I never would have believed that Ken Griffey Jr. might ever not be the best player in baseball, much less that he would end up being considered junior to his dad. It’s happening, though.
It’s Wednesday night, and I didn’t write my column early because I was watching the Mariners-Athletics game. Now I sit down, feeling a little vindicated for my season-long fight against local anti-Mike Cameron sentiment.
The Mariners face the A’s again tomorrow, starting Joel Pineiro against Cory Lidle. The Angels have John Lackey facing Colby Lewis. I don’t think this particularly unfair to the Mariners; it’s not as if they didn’t have their chances to beat up on bad teams, or anything. Their pit is one they’ve dug themselves with crappy pickups and a low-key battle between the manager and GM, where Piniella seems determined to put the awful pieces he’s been given (like Jose Offerman) in crucial game situations where their failures are magnified. Gillick in retaliation doesn’t care.
Certainty changes everything. Baseball’s exciting, if for no other reason, because the Devil Rays–an abjectly bad franchise–can beat the Yankees every couple of times they meet. Unlike in football, the outcome of a single contest between a defending champion and a perennial cellar-dweller is relatively uncertain, thus every game has the ability to provide a legitimate sense of drama. It’s the lack of certainty that makes it the greatest sport in the world.
MONKEYS EQUALS WINNING
“You have to respect the monkey, that’s for sure. Every time he peeks his little head out, something happens for them. You got to respect him or kidnap him, one or the other.”
–Desi Relaford, Mariners infielder, on playing at Edison Field