illustration by Samara Pearlstein
I mean, what am I supposed to do with that information? How am I supposed to feel about the sort of team that can beat up the Wrong Sox, and then get swept at home by the worst team in the AL West? Do I feel good about them? Do I feel bad about them? Do I simply join them and reel in shared terror at the sight of Eric Wedge’s mustache? I just don’t know.
–The thing with Eric Wedge’s mustache: it fits EXACTLY on his upper lip, so it is hard to see where his mouth ends. He has let the mustache grow very wide, right to the sides of his face. Consequently, it looks like his mouth extends across his entire face like some sort of terrifying muppet or a Canadian on South Park. Most unsettling.
–Michael Pineda looked like he was going to be unhittable after he started the game with 4 consecutive strikeouts. Then Brennan Boesch doubled, Ryan Raburn walked (!!!), and Alex Avila doubled them both in for two runs. I thought for sure Pineda had been rattled and Things Were Going to Be OK. Turns out those were the only runs Pineda would give up. The OKness, not so much.
–Jim Joyce was behind the plate today (no perfect games to ruin), and holy cats is he ever loud. But I have to ask: is he actually saying “STRIKE!” on each call, or is he just screaming “HREEEEEEEEEEE!” back there? Because it really sounds more like the latter.
–There was a moment in the 5th inning with one out, men on the corners. Milton Bradley was up. Brad Penny stepped off the rubber. Avila started towards him, then stopped and went back behind the plate. The cameras didn’t show what Penny did to make him retreat, but I imagine he gave a single snarling bellow, like a grizzly bear.
–Miguel Olivo homered again. It went over Raburn’s head and he didn’t have to help it over the wall this time, but don’t you think that when he saw an Olivo fly ball heading in his direction again, he started crying a little on the inside?
–They were showing various cold people in the crowd, and at one point they focused on a group of fans that included a guy wearing a Padres hat and a Padres jacket. That poor Padres fan. This is not the weather for which he is best equipped.
–Avila is trying a goatee. We’ll see if he can keep it up, or if the rest of his beardy hairs will simply take over, as they have every time before.
–Penny was tossing a ball back to Joyce because it was scuffed or whatever. For some reason he let it fly wild. It ended up coming in and hitting Ichiro, who was just standing there waiting for it to be batting time. Ichiro turned to Joyce and said something that was probably along the lines of, “What the heck was that?” He wasn’t hurt– it was a soft toss, not a pitch– but he was baffled and maybe a little unsure if he should be annoyed or not. What is with Tigers pitchers and weird non-pitches lately?
–Rod Allen on why he didn’t score baseball games as a kid: “I was too busy running around trying to eat them hot dogs.”
–Luis Rodriguez hit a three-run homer. Luis freakin’ Rodriguez. It was his first of the year, and he has never hit more than two in any given season. But the most impressive part was the fact that when he got back to the dugout, he did a complicated celebration dance with Chone Figgins. I cannot believe they had a dance routine ready to go for the incredibly unlikely event of Rodriguez hitting a ball out of the park.
–A great thing from the Mothership:
Six words from Alex Avila summed up the last three games. He could’ve summed it up in five.
“The Mariners have our number, basically,” he said.
Jason Beck is getting editorial on Alex Avila! I love this most of all.