Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Not A Game Report: 14 innings of Mariners vs. Twins, Bloomquist's Blown Save

I can't believe the game is still going. We're already in the 14th inning as I start writing this. I guess maybe I should have gone to Safeco tonight, but I thought it might be more important to take care of things like, you know, laundry.

(Funny, the game where I discovered that they do a "14th inning stretch" at Safeco Field was also a Twins game, in May of 2004.)

From my viewpoint, this has been the game:

7:15pm or so: I'm driving to the gym. On the radio, I hear Beltre ground into the inning-ending fielder's choice in the first inning.

7:50pm or so: I'm kind of watching the game on the TV in the weight room, absentmindedly doing my weights, as one of my normal lifting partners is in California for the week and the other one couldn't go today. I look up and Richie Sexson is up to bat, and the score is 1-0 Twins. I say to the guy using the cable weight machine, "Just watch, he's either going to strike out or hit a home run." The guy remarks, "I'll bet on the strikeout." I look down to set my weights and I hear "Holy shit," and I look up, and sure enough, Sexson's hit a home run to tie the game at 1-1. Cool.

8pm: Some people are trying to get a pickup game of volleyball going, so I decide to join them, because that'll be infinitely more fun than watching the Mariners find some way to lose the game.

8:30pm: I realize that playing volleyball right after lifting weights is a bad idea, and boy will I be sore tomorrow, so I quit playing and go home. In the car on the way home, I hear Willie get that double and score to make it 2-1, and I hear Richie and Raul get on base, as the radio guys explain that "With guys on first and second and no outs, there's a really good chance we'll score another run or two!" Gosh, really? I mean, I'm sure they can find some creative way to strand those guys on base if they try hard enough.

The announcers also explain to us that from now on they will be correctly pronouncing Betancourt's first name as "JOOniesky" instead of "YOUniesky", and Yorvit Torrealba's first name as "You're beat". Well, that's uplifting. A few minutes later they accidentally get both of their phonemes crossed and refer to him as "Jore-Beat". Hmm.

Reed grounds into a double play but a run scores; around this point I get home; by the time I get upstairs and put on the radio here, we're already into the 7th inning. Pineiro looked surprisingly good out there; he didn't walk a single person all night. I put in a load of laundry and load up Gameday.

9:15pm: Just like the last few games, the Mariners are down by one run in the ninth, and Eddie comes into a 3-2 game. No problem, right?

9:25pm: Oops. Thanks a lot, Willie Boone-quist. How tall do you think Richie is, exactly?

9:30pm: ...oh, great. Can you blow a save on an unearned run? I guess so.

At this point, with the score tied at 3-3, I keep the radio tuned in, but I personally tune out to do other stuff. Of course, there's really not much going on in the game for a while anyway, it seems. Nobody's scoring, though it sure sounds like they keep getting sort of close to it.

They announce that Friday's starters are Jarrod Washburn vs. Jamie Moyer. I'm glad Washburn is back off the DL; have I mentioned that he has the dreamiest blue eyes?

I amuse myself reading Japanese baseball articles for a while. Kazuhiro Sasaki pitched in his last game before retiring as planned on the 9th, up in Sendai with his family present, so I look around at the articles about that. He came in just for one batter - in the second inning, he faced his old rival Kazuhiro Kiyohara, the good ol' Giants slugger who now has 514 career home runs. Always dramatic (and always, somewhat, a crybaby), Kiyohara apparently struck out on Sasaki's last forkball because he was too teary-eyed to see the ball. Kiyohara went up to Sasaki, they hugged and cried, then they took out Sasaki for Ken Kadokura and the game went on, with Yokohama eventually losing 0-1 to Yomiuri. Awwwwwww.

(There's a great article here where Ichiro talks about memories of Sasaki, too.)

11:15pm: Gaaahhh, Shiggy sounds terrible out there. This game is going to end pretty soon, I can tell. Good thing, too, as I'm about to put my last load of clothes into the dryer.

Seth Stohs seems to be the hot link of the day with his detailed analysis of Felix's debut yesterday. I'm half expecting his next post to explain the physics behind Felix's "what the heck was that?" pitch.

The A's won their game against the Angels today, so the top of the AL West is tied again. Whoever wins tomorrow (Byrd vs. Blanton? I think I'd bet on Blanton) will pull ahead slightly, as the A's then get to pound on the Twins, and the Angels come to Seattle to attempt to make up for getting swept last month.

Oh, for crying out loud. 7-3? I think they really need to start making a much much bigger deal out of the "inherited runners - scored" stat and less of a big deal out of things like ERA and whatnot for relievers. I mean, yeah, Nelly put two guys on, but Shiggy let four runs score.

Daaaamn yoooooou, Joe Mauer. 4-for-5, reaching base in 6 out of 7 plate appearances, 6 TB, 3 RBI? I'd say batting .800/.857/1.166 for the day is pretty good; it's a hot game of Sizemorean proportions. (Shame it only brings him to a .333/.466/.500 line for the series, though I mean, he's their catcher! Their catcher!)

Wow, look at all the pitchers we used tonight. Pineiro, Sherrill, Putz, Guardado, Mateo, Thornton, Nelly, Shiggy... I guess it's fortunate the game ended when it did, because we were out of mojo *and* bullpen. Good thing there's a day off tomorrow!

Speaking of looking at pictures, I'd been trying to place who Lew Ford reminds me of, and I think I finally figured it out:

Lewwwwwww. Looooooou. Is it just me? I mean, obviously they're not alike in most other things (for example, Lew Ford is not a first baseman, and Lou Gehrig was not right-handed), but something about the smile, and the demeanor, just totally brings this resemblance to mind.

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