Showing posts with label Orioles. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Orioles. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Game Report: Mariners vs. Orioles - Raully Fries of London!

I don't even know where to start when talking about this game. It was another BECU night, which made it another LL Night. The original plan was to go for Section 340, Row 15 again, which was a nice empty patch of seats during the last LL Night, another Orioles game on a Monday at the start of June. However, that was before the Mariners had started to win games -- or more like, before the rest of Seattle actually noticed. This time, preliminary reports coming in from people buying tickets were that the middle rows of section 340 were actually already full. I even ended up with a ticket in row 17, so it seemed imminent that we'd be moving back a bit.

In order to facilitate people finding the LL group, I figured I'd make a sign. Paul suggested I make a Rally Fries sign. I'd called the game "LL Nights of London" as a joke since Graham, our esteemed colleague from the UK, would be at the game, and people on LL append "of London" to various things during Ibanez at-bats. I ended up making a sign that said "AH-OOOOO, RAuLLY FRIES OF LONDON", thus combining about three silly jokes into what I thought was one decent joke.

It turns out I got on TV not once, but twice! Watching the mlb.tv broadcast, it seems that they first showed me at the start of the bottom of the fourth inning (at about 1:37 on the broadcast), just with the announcers laughing like "A-ha... Raully Fries of London?" and you can see the top of my head.



The second time was during the bottom of the 5th inning, when Raul Ibanez was up to bat, at about 1:57:30 on the broadcast, and the announcer's like "Raully fries! You betcha. That's playing off the Warren Zevon classic, 'Werewolves of London'..."



And they said they'd give out the rally fries in the next half inning, and sure enough, I didn't get them. They went to a cute little kid in the lower deck. I can't feel too bad about losing to a little kid.



So, rally fries aside, it was pretty crazy hanging out with our LL group. Besides me, there was Gomez, Marc W, Matthew, Graham, Bretticus, Etowncoug, Twolsandtwors, PositivePaul, jtopps, and marinerschas2. Rather than try to recount all of the stuff we said, especially since I missed a bunch, I'll first link to the pictures/videos thread about the game on LL.

Horacio Ramirez started for the Mariners, on his way back from the DL, and a high-socks-wearing lefty-throwing Brian Burres started for Baltimore.

As expected, we started off the game by heartily booing a high-socks-wearing Brian Roberts and yelling things like "E-4!" and "Hit him for JJ!" The Orioles went down meekly in their half of the first, and the Mariners scored a run when a DHing Ichiro doubled to lead off, stole third during Raul's at-bat after Jose Lopez failed to bunt him over and scored on another groundout by Raul. 1-0 Mariners.

In the top of the second, after Aubrey Huff grounded into the first of his double plays for the day, Ramon Hernandez hit a 345-foot home run to left field. It really didn't look like a home run at first, and the guys were all yelling "ADAM JONES WOULD HAVE GOTTEN THAT" and so on, but really, the ball landed in the lap of some guy in the bullpen. That tied up the game at 1-1 as Horacio Ramirez made a diving snag of a grounder off Jay Payton and threw the ball to first from a prone position on the ground.

Nothing much happened in the rest of the second or in the third, aside from Jason Ellison showing more why he is the master of the infield single, and then getting tagged out stealing second.

Amidst cheers of "Gomez sucks! I mean Chris Gomez, not you," Chris Gomez led off the 4th inning with a triple to right which just sort of bounced all over the corner eluding Jose Guillen. Nick Markakis hit a "single" to first, by which I mean he hit a single towards the right side of the infield, and Richie Sexson came in to get it, and Horacio Ramirez didn't go cover first, so Markakis was safe and Gomez scored. 2-1 Orioles. Kevin Millar also got a single, but then Aubrey Huff grounded into his second double play of the day, this time a 1-6-3. Ramon Hernandez hit a long fly ball to left rather than another home run.

The Mariners tied it up in the bottom of the 4th, Jose Guillen doubling and Richie Sexson singling him in, to make it 2-2.

The game stayed tied until the bottom of the 6th. Jose Guillen led off with a single, and then we all got up to do the Rally Dance for Adrian Beltre's at-bat. It was a drawn-out at-bat and we even had these little kids a few rows down doing the dance along with us. (They seemed to think we were going to get on the big screen being goofy, and I don't blame them.) Unfortunately, the rally dance only induced Beltre to ground into a double play. I like to think of this as a weird form of karma though, because right after that Richie Sexson walked, and Johjima singled, and then Yuniesky Betancourt BECAME THE YUNI-BOMBER except not. He hit a looooong fly ball to left field, which bounced off the top of the yellow line at the top of the outfield wall. Now, I mean, I think that's a home run, but apparently the umpires didn't. Either way, it was a double, scoring the other two guys, and making it a 4-2 game.

Nothing much happened on the field for the rest of the game, but plenty of silliness happened up with us. We all cheered a ton when Sean Green came out to pitch the 8th, and when George Sherrill came out after that we started a big chant of "GEORGE. GEORGE. GEORGE. GEORGE." and so on. JJ's appearance, of course, had us all yelling things like "Putz wooooooo!" and "Putz in, game over!"

Which, of course, was the case, as JJ easily retired the side in the 9th so the Mariners won the game 4-2. And this brings my Mariners-watching record to 16-4!

I was actually on the big screen at the stadium in the 7th when Raul singled inbetween the rest of the side striking out. And of course as soon as Brett realized it, he jumped up and put his "Free Adam Jones" sign in front of mine, and they immediately stopped showing us, of course.

We all stuck around for a while after the game and chatted. While I haven't really gone into great detail about all of the silliness -- the Rally Dance in the 6th inning had me laughing so hard that I was crying -- it really was a blast hanging out with the gang. It figures that we'd start having these great semi-regular meetups right before I leave the country, but hey, that's the way things go. In some ways, though, it's nicer to move away on a high note rather than a low note. But it's going to kill me if the Mariners actually make the postseason...

I still need to write up Saturday's game and the cafe, I know. Sorry, I've been sort of going crazy getting my act together here.

Oh, a funny little tidbit: when I walked up to the ticket booth to get my ticket for the game, I noticed the guy had two stacks of 2002 Topps baseball cards, and the top of one stack was of Ryan Rupe. You probably haven't heard of Rupe because he's not a particularly good pitcher, but I actually managed to see him pitch in Japan in 2004 in one of the 6 games he played for the Fighters, and he only gave up one run in something like 6 innings (but got a no-decision, the Fighters didn't get ahead until the 8th inning). Anyway, I see the top card and I'm like "I know I'm not a little kid, but can I please have that Ryan Rupe card?" The guy's like "Who?" and I'm like "Ryan Rupe! He's not a great pitcher, but I saw him play in Japan!" The guy's like "Uhhh, okay, whatever" and gave me the card and my ticket. So now I have a Ryan Rupe card, for whatever that's worth, which is probably very little.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Game Report: Mariners vs. Orioles - There Is No "Out" In "Bloomquist"

Astute viewers may note that the title of this post is actually false.

Today I went to Safeco for the second Lookout Landing night of the year. We had about 10ish people; offhand I think we had jtopps (and his wife), fett42, edgar for pres, gomez, bretticus (and a friend), etowncoug (and a friend), garces, me, and then one other guy whose handle I forgot and I feel dumb. To be honest, the game sort of sucked for the first 7 innings, and then the Mariners exploded and so did our group.

This is kind of what the eighth inning was like for our group:

"Our Hernandez is much cooler than their Hernandez!"

[Ramon Hernandez strikes out]

"Did you notice Sean Green is throwing sidearm? It seems to be helping him..."

[he walks Corey Patterson]

"...maybe not."

[they bring in Sherrill]

"I like George Sherrill. I took him on my fantasy team because he strikes out guys."

[Roberts strikes out]

"Like that?"

"Yeah, like that."

[inning changes, Chad Bradford comes out]

[Sexson pops out]

"Richie can't handle submariners because he's too tall to see the ball."

[Johjima strikes out]

"Dammit Kenji. Now we're going to make another out and Ichiro won't be up again until there's 2 outs in the 9th."

"Why are you so sure they're going to be automatic outs just because their names begin with B and end in T?"

"WHAT? That makes absolutely no sense."

"There's no 'out' in Betancourt."

"Yes there is."

"Hey, there's also an 'out' in Bloomquist."

"There's also umm, 'Boo', and 'lost', and 'bust'..."

"...and 'quit', and 'loot', and 'boom', and 'must'..."

[Yuni singles]

"WOOOOOOOO!"

[Bloomquist singles]

"HOLY SHIT WOOOOOOOOOO!"

[Broussard is announced as a pinch-hitter for Ellison]

"BROUSSARD WOOOOOOOOOO"

[pitching change, John Parrish comes out]

"Rally lion dance!" [we flail arms]

[Vidro is announced as pinch-hitter for Broussard]

"TUUUUUUUUUUUURBOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO"

"Guys, this isn't so bad. We have two dudes on base and two outs, he can't possibly ground into a double play. Infact, exactly what we NEED is a patented professional Vidro single."

"TUUUUUUUUUUUURBOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO"

"Wait a minute, who's going to play centerfield now that Ellison's out and Ichiro is the DH?"

"Hey, are those guys over there ALSO yelling 'Turbo'? I think they are!"

"Maybe Bloomquist will go to center and Vidro will play third. Ha ha."

"Maybe VIDRO will play center. Ha HA!"

[Vidro singles, Betancourt scores. Beltre comes in as a pinch-runner]

"ICHIRO!!!!! I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE YOOOOOOOOOUUUUUU ICHIRO!!!!!!"

[Ichiro doubles, Bloomquist scores]

[Lopez hits a shot up the right field line, everyone else scores]

[Lots of high-fives]

"Gahh, if Raul doesn't strike out here, I'm going to have to go to a new line on my scorecard and mess it all up."

"OH THAT SUCKS DOESN'T IT."

[Raul grounds out]

"Whew!"

[strains of AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" start playing over the speakers]

"PUTZ IN, GAME OVER!"

"PUTZ WOOOOOOOOO!!!"

"HA, my luck is much better than Bretticus's luck. And even better, I just got a nice vultured win off George Sherrill. Wooooooo!"

Yeah.

Since the the Mariners won 7-4, that also brought my personal won-loss record this season up to 9-3.

Ichiro led off the bottom of the first inning with a home run over the 385 sign in right-center. That was cool.

Sean Green is throwing sidearm now. I swear he wasn't last year. It's neat, though I don't know if it's any more effective per se. But, I remember it worked for Ronnie The Bear in the past, so who knows.

I saw Mark Lowe walk into the bullpen before the game. Dunno what's up with that.

Crazy play in the top of the 6th with runners at first and second. I didn't see exactly what started it, but suddenly Kenji Johjima was RUNNING from behind the plate out to second base with the ball for some reason, and Brian Roberts found himself caught in a rundown between second and third. I marked it a "CS 2-4-5" but that doesn't even begin to capture how nuts it is to see your catcher suddenly running like mad towards second.

Honestly, it really was just a very boring first 6-7 innings or so. What we were mostly concerned over was the sheer number of line drives people were getting off of Felix, marked by the 11 hits in 5.2 innings, where even guys like Aubrey Huff and Corey Patterson were getting doubles, and Brian Roberts infact got three.

Yuniesky Betancourt now has a 16-game hitting streak. Cool.

Willie Bloomquist went 3-for-4. It really shouldn't surprise anyone, though, since he always picks some completely random lefty in the AL each year to own. Bedard is just another in the grand tradition of Washburn, Zito, etc.

I still hate the Orioles.

No pictures today, either. The stadium roof was open when we got there, but the sky was already sort of gray, and it started "raining" in the 4th inning or so -- more like a weird sprinkling. The roof closed and solved that. Either way, I decided not to bring my camera because of the poor lighting and being in the upper deck.

Still, in the end I think we all had fun hanging out, and hopefully we'll do another one of these in a few weeks!

Friday, May 26, 2006

Game Report: Mariners vs. Orioles - There's no Wrong Way to Beat an Oriole

This is actually about the game from Wednesday night, where the Mariners won the game 7-4, not to be confused with this afternoon's game, where despite Gil Meche pitching 7 innings, striking out 10, walking 2, with 4 hits, somehow the Mariners out-Halamaed themselves on Rodrigo Lopez and lost 2-0.

See, today's game was in the afternoon, and it was on my 16-game plan, but I couldn't get out of work, so I switched tickets for Wednesday, which worked out well enough. A friend of mine from college just moved to town on Tuesday, and I figured taking him to a Mariners game was a great way to welcome him to Seattle. In the past, I've been to three baseball games I recall with this particular friend, and the home team lost all of them; one was a M's-Rays game in 2004 where the only thing I really remember about the game was Bucky Jacobsen's home run and that it was near the end of the "Ron Villone, Starting Pitcher" experiment. The other two games were in Pittsburgh against the Cardinals, both lost, one spectacularly.

So it goes to figure that this time, we watched the home team win as a former Pirates pitcher imploded, right?

Short version: Jose Lopez reached base when Kevin Millar forgot how to catch a ball in the first and scored on a Sexson single. In the second inning Kris Benson was getting chewed on like a dog toy, as the Mariners strung together a bunch of walks and doubles, as well as a pretty funny fakeout foul dribbler that Melvin Mora watched rolling along, for an eventual total of 6 runs scored as they batted around. The Orioles chipped away at the 7-0 lead a bit as Melvin Mora and Javy Lopez both hit two-run homers off J-Rod the Washburninator to bring it to 7-4, but that was all they got. Sean Green capped off the 6th with a Mora strikeout and then pitched two scoreless innings, and J.J. Putz came in with the intent of making up for his lousy Tuesday outing, and did so, facing only three batters (Markakis, Roberts, Mora) and striking them all out swinging.

Now, what else can I say about this game?

Firstly, I sat close enough to the field to really see some of the players and observed a lot of stuff. For example, Kevin Millar seems to have ADHD. He would run out to first base, take off his hat, put it on lopsided, say hi to anyone who walked by, turn around, wave at people in the stands and make faces at them, then put on his hat correctly, toss around a ball with the infielders, and then put his hat on wrong again, talk to the first-base coach, fix his hair, put his hat on correctly... it was sort of funny, and I should have tallied the number of times Millar adjusted his hat.

Jeff Conine is old. Yeah, I know, he'll be 40 in a month, of course he's old, but he looks it, too. Some ballplayers are pretty old and don't look it (like Steve Finley, or even last year Pat Borders), and some just do (Jamie Moyer).

Jeremy Reed looks pretty good with his hair growing out, I think.

Anyway, um. That error in the first inning by Millar was really a shame, because it was a damn nice stop by Tejada, and I was even about to shout "Nice!" to appreciate what a good play it was, until Millar dropped it and Lopez was safe.

The second inning was crazy on both sides. Washburn loaded the bases with walks, and seemed to have a lot of trouble throwing strikes for a bit there, but got lucky in Patterson popping up foul to third and Matos hitting a bouncing grounder up to Sexson.

But Benson, oh, Benson, what the heck happened to you? It's funny, I felt like I was watching a rerun of Sunday's game; on Sunday I was there to watch Chan Ho Park, who had been pitching pretty well, implode to the tune of 8 Mariners runs in the second inning; this time I watched Kris Benson, who has been pitching pretty well, implode to the tune of 6 Mariners runs in the second inning. It started off innocuously enough with Adrian Beltre grounding out to first, and Johjima walked. Then things started to get crazy. Jeremy Reed dribbled a grounder up the leftfield foul line, and Melvin Mora didn't touch it and just watched it roll, expecting it to go foul. It didn't. So with every fan in Safeco standing up laughing, Reed was safe at first on a "bunt single" and Johjima was on second. Betancourt hit the ball out to left field, and hey, did I mention Jeff Conine is old? Because he didn't quite get to the ball in time, and dove out for it, and whoooosh, he missed and fell over. As Conine sat there confused and Patterson recovered the ball, they called it a double, as Johjima and Reed scored, 3-0.

Ichiro then smacked the ball good into right center; it looked like an almost-home-run, which it was, as it bounced over the FSN Northwest sign for a ground rule double, scoring Betancourt. 4-0. Jose Lopez struck out, and Ibanez walked after Benson tried to pull off a sneaky pickoff of Ichiro at second. A wild pitch put Ibanez and Ichiro on second and third. I wasn't expecting much out of Big Richie, but he made Jeff Conine go running again, hitting the ball along the line past a diving Melvin Mora into the leftfield corner for a double, scoring Ichiro and Ibanez; 6-0. Carl Everett hit a single and Big Richie lumbered home, 7-0. Even Beltre got in on the hitting action and got a single at that point, but Johjima struck out to end the inning, and yet again, I had to push over numbers on my scorecard.

"See, I've seen this before. This is where the Mariners feel all comfy with their huge lead, and then the opposing team chips away at it and gives us all an ulcer," I said as Brian Roberts fouled off about a thousand pitches before finally walking. Mora also watched a few balls go by before smacking a really long fly ball to left field. I was pretty sure it was a home run, but as always, I try to watch the fielders as well as the ball to judge the arc, and Ibanez was still running; he made a grab at it and almost got it at the bullpen wall. Whoosh. 7-2. Washburn bore down a little and got a few groundouts to finish the inning.

Javy Lopez's home run in the 5th was a lot bigger. Rather than watching Ibanez, I was watching the fans sitting in section 151, who were all reaching out for the ball, and I knew at that moment it was a home run, as it went 379 feet into the stands. Mora had singled, so that made it 7-4.

The game stayed at 7-4 for the rest of the game, and there's not much to say about the rest of it, except a few scattered moments. Betancourt made a positively dazzling grab of a Javy Lopez grounder in the 7th, which was followed by Ramon Hernandez splitting his bat in half as he popped the ball to second to end the inning. As the Mariners ran into the stands, this chick in the front row jumped up and down and waved at Jose Lopez for the baseball. He threw it to her, but ended up throwing about three rows back, and the girl pouted at the person who caught it until they gave it to her. It was sort of comical to me, but what do I know? The only ball I've ever been thrown was from Willie Bloomquist.

Everett got himself thrown out trying to steal second. I have to point this out to Hargrove, but dinosaurs don't steal bases very well.

As I mentioned, Putz was absolutely lights-out in the ninth. I mean, Mora and Roberts are no small bats, and he struck out Markakis and those two in quick succession to end the game. Good stuff.

Kurt Birkins looked really young to me, but he also looked really good to me as a pitcher, and looking at his stats is kind of interesting; he's got good peripheral numbers through the minors and he seemed pretty composed on the mound as he went through the Mariners. I don't really know much about the Orioles farm system, but I assume things have to be either really good or really bad if they're doing things like starting John Halama out there.

And speaking of Halama and other former Mariners pitchers having a few good starts, Aaron Sele also won a game on Wednesday, which puts him at 3-0 and a 1.69 ERA. Even the wrap for that game starts off with "No one could have expected this when Aaron Sele took Odalis Perez's spot in the rotation," which I think sums up the situation pretty well.

As far as Kris Benson goes, anyway, a friend of mine had been joking a bit ago about how the Mets had "traded away Kris Benson (6-3, 3.86) and Anna Benson (36-24-34) for Jorge Julio (0-1, 5.31)", but given this atrocious outing and how the Mets now traded Jorge Julio for the Duque Dance, perhaps things are all balanced out.

By the way, in the Mariners favorites, Ichiro did list Sandra Bullock as his favorite actress, which at least sort of explains why he lists Miss Congeniality as his favorite movie. Wait, no it doesn't.