Houston We (May) Have a Problem
Being a Seattle Mariners fan you don’t enter this or any other season with delusions of grandeur. You simply hope that the team plays better than they did last year, a couple of youngsters make some noise, and maybe, just maybe, the team stays competitive long enough that they’re still a viable playoff contender come All Star break. Thus far it’s been a little bit of a mixed bag.
The M’s started the season on a positive note, taking the first two games at 2012 AL West Division champ Oakland. Last night, however, would have to be looked at as the early season low point as they were destroyed at home 16-9 by the Houston Astros, a team many predict to be the worst in baseball. (Gulp.) OK, so it’s way too early to panic, but you simply can’t let a team like Houston come in and crush you like that in only your second home game of the season. If there was one silver lining in the loss it was that the game was only attended by 10,745, the smallest crowd in the history of Safeco Field. So there’s that. The other interesting thing about the game was that Houston and Seattle combined for a total of eight home runs, which undoubtedly proves that the moving in of the fences was indeed a success.
Looking forward, Seattle will attempt to win the series from Houston later this evening as Blake Beavan takes the hill for the M’s in his highly-anticipated showdown (note the high sarcasm here) against Brad Peacock. With those kind of marquee names facing off, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Seattle breaks the negative attendance record they set just last night. Whatever the case, Seattle really needs to close out this series with a solid win. Scuffling against Houston is not going to do anything to inspire the team or its fans. Not to make excuses for them, but it doesn’t help Seattle that Major League Baseball handed them a Bataan Death March of a schedule, opening the season with 14 straight games (does any other team have the same deal?), including some fairly extensive travel. But, like Tommy Hanks said, there’s no crying in baseball, and the Mariners need to pick up easy Ws whenever the opportunity presents itself. Houston is always that opportunity.
Next up, Texas comes in for a four-game set before Seattle gets its first off day on the 15th. Live it up on Tax Day fellas because you then play another 16 straight games before your next respite. Wow. A breakneck schedule like that is likely to turn this young team into ancient Mariners in no time. Hopefully they manage to stay afloat.