Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Rain On My Parade

Mariners 5, Twins 1

Since I am originally from the Seattle area, people on bulletin boards often ask, which team do I want to win when the Twins meet the Mariners? When it comes down to it, where is my heart? Mostly, I just root for a good game. I hate to see either team embarrassed. Later in the season, I might choose sides just based on which team is in a tighter race and needs the wins. Since my expectations for the Mariners are modest this season--I think a .500 record would be a reasonable measure of success for them--I guess I'd rather see the Twins take 2 games out of this series.

Besides, I genuinely like the Twins. I am a Twins Fan, and it's more fun to root for the Romans when living in Rome, anyway.

Seattle got one up on Rome yesterday afternoon, 5-1. The M's didn't embarrass the Twins, but then the Twins didn't have much going for them, either. Brad Radke had his classic "pretty good 7 innings except for a couple mistakes" kind of outing, including the usual bomb in the first inning; and, yes, afterwards the Dazzle Man obliged to describe the performance like so, as he practically apologized for not picking The Annointed Ace for Life as one of his three Stars of the Game. As I was driving out to the Bulldog to watch the game with a gathering of Batlings, Big Game Brad had us in a 3-0 hole while I was still stuck in traffic on West Lake Street.

Brad, this is a kind of Holiday for me, Opening Day, and you're pouring rain on my parade before I even got to climb aboard the float. I'm not in the mood to allow you credit for looking good except for the "couple mistakes" that weren't so pretty. In fact, I'm not above pointing out that the "couple mistakes" includes your own throwing error that let Ichiro reach 2nd base before coughing up Sexson's first home run. I'm not giving you a pass. That kind of grading scale is for our troubled young Kyle, because we want to encourage him as long as he's trying his best, or Silva because any contributions he makes to the rotation seem like an unexpected bonus. I expect more of the supposed Staff Ace on Opening Day. You're supposed to set a tone. Am I wrong?

Good for Richie Sexson, though. First pitch he sees as a Mariner, officially, he drills over the scoreboard pub in LF. The next time up, he launches another cookie over the wall in straight CF where not even Torii Hunter could reach it. There's a first impression that people are going to remember awhile. Welcome back to the Northwest, stringbean.

Good for Jamie Moyer, as well. After a poor 2000 season, M's fans wondered then if he was too old and washed up until he came back and put up a 20-6 record and 3.43 ERA in 2001. This spring he's in the same position again, following a poor 2004 season. Is he too old now, or does his change-up exist outside of linear time? Let's just say that I thought I heard him humming Moonlight Sonata as he left the game in the 6th. If you're not sure what I mean, perhaps I can explore that theme tomorrow.

As for the Twins, I was pleased to see Jason Bartlett deliver an RBI single. Joe Mauer had a hit and stole a base (gasps in the Bulldog as he took off, relieved cheers when he slid in safely--headfirst--and stood up under his own power). He also got credit for throwing out Ichiro trying to steal 2nd, although replays showed Ichiro was clearly safe behind the tag and rightly protested.

"I got an opinion of that call for ya, RIGHT HERE!"
(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Luis Rivas and Jacque Jones made Dazzle's Stars of the Game list for a couple nifty defensive gems, but I missed seeing both as I was still stuck in traffic. Jones played against the lefty Moyer today and had a hit, but wildly chased three pitches by the lefty "Neveready Eddie" (a name I saw a Seattle fan hang on our old friend this spring training) as he struck out in the 9th.

Seeing Mauer and Morneau go down meekly against the lefty Ron Villone in the 8th, and Jones chasing Eddie's junk in the 9th, I'm reminded that neither of our M&M Boys put up good numbers against LHP last year--and of course Jones has always been reduced to banjo-picking by nearly anyone who can sweep the plate from South to North. This could be a real problem until the young lads show they can hold their own with the southpaws, or else Gardenhire resolves to pinch-hit for them in the late innings of close games. In the latter case, wouldn't it be nice to have a decent righty bat off the bench besides LeCroy, somebody more dangerous than Nick Punto? Oh, if only the club had such a player around to consider in spring training this year.... Ha.

Do I sound like a Twins fan? I wouldn't complain like this if I weren't, would I?

Go get 'em tonight, Johan.


At 4/05/2005 8:43 AM, Anonymous Just Beth said...

In all fairness, I read this morning that the Little League infield should've shouted to Bradke that he should throw to second. The guy was facing the wrong way to know what the runner was doing. But two homers? Oof.

At 4/05/2005 10:15 AM, Anonymous Mom said...

The game was great, Dad and I enjoyed Opening Day ceremonies and the fact that we won. It's nice to hear you do have feelings for the Mariners but a .500 season?!?! Love, Mom!

At 4/05/2005 3:25 PM, Blogger frightwig said...

It was fun to see Edgar throw out the first pitch, wasn't it? Although clearly his throwing arm must have atrophied years ago, from the looks of that delivery....

One win in the books, just 80 more to go! :)

At 4/05/2005 4:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Resto can't even make the Devil Rays' top 25. Give it a rest.

At 4/08/2005 1:52 AM, Blogger Leslie Monteiro said...

What a stinkeraoo performance by the Twins today. This was a very bad and very dissapointing. I was okay with losing, but the way they played today was a disgrace. Everyone stunk today. Lynch is right. I did not miss much watching this game. What a day to forget. First, my cable got disconnected by Time Warner Cable this afternoon. Second, we might get our cable canceled. It ended with this.

Twins got their rearends kicked. They were outplayed and outclassed all game long today. Brad was horrible. I don't know if it was the cold weather that affected him, but he wasn't sharp. He wasn't any close to the strike zone. He was giving up too many gopher balls to my liking. He didn't have it today. I wonder if he is a cold weather pitcher because he sure tends to stink when it's very cold. As for getting off bad early, I agree though last year he started off fine.

Twins hitters was as bad as Brad. They swung at stupid pitches and they swung at the first pitch. Unbelivable. I better not see this garbage this year. I like to think we are good enough in hitting.

This was not a great day for the Twins. They are better than this.

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