Tuesday May 31, 2022
I took my wife to the Mariners game Sunday afternoon but forgot to tell her about MLB's new bag policy. Basically, you can't bring most bags, including purses, into the park. Patricia's purse was smallish but not small enough for the gatekeepers at T-Mobile Park, who measured and said no. When we told them we'd walked to the park from First Hill, so we had no car to return the purse to, a storge locker on Occidental was suggested. “It's just over there,” we were told. “On Occidental.” Once we found it, we also found out it cost $10. That's when Patricia put her foot down, hid her purse beneath her jacket, and we went in via another gate. But man was she steamed. Don't come between a woman and her purse, MLB. Just asking for trouble. Just asking for it.
The policy, I guess, is for security reasons and to speed up the entrance process, but it delayed ours. By the time we got to Section 327 it was the bottom of the 2nd and the M's were down 1-0. And that's where it stood for a while. M's didn't get a baserunner until the 5th (Suarez, walk), a hit until the 6th (Torrens, single), and a run until two outs in the 6th (France, RBI single, scoring Torrens).
“I don't know any of these guys,” Patricia said.
“It's a young team,” I said. “Doesn't help that I don't watch the games, because we don't have cable.” Then I told her what I knew about our starting lineup:
- Ty France is among the league leaders in hits. “He's hitting .340,” I said. “I can't remember the last time we had a guy hitting .340.”
- J.P. Crawford is a great defensive shortstop, a team leader, fun to watch.
- Julio Rodriguez is our highly touted rookie who began wobbly, is righting himself, has wheels and steals, and wears an iconic number (44) at an iconic position (CF).
- We got Jesse Winker in a trade with the Reds but he's hitting about 100 points below what he did last year.
- We got Eugenio Suarez in the same trade, he was supposed to suck defensively at 3B but hasn't been bad.
- Adam Frazier I don't really know.
- Mike Ford I don't really know.
- Luis Torrens I don't really know.
- Taylor Trammell I don't really know.
In the 7th, the M's had a chance to go ahead after two leadoff singles and a sacrifice. But the Astros went to a reliever, former Mariner Rafael Montero (M's ERA: 7.27; Astros ERA: 0.35), who got two quick Ks on two bottom-of-the-order dudes hitting below .200 (Ford, Torrens).
“Why do we use a guy who can't hit as DH?” Patricia asked of Ford.
“I guess because he's better than our other options?” I said, shrugging.
Top of the 8th, we again sent out our starter, Marco Gonzalez, but he couldn't finish off their bottom-of-the-order dude hitting below .200, Martin Maldonado, who doubled on a 3-2 pitch. And then our reliever, Paul Sewald, who arrived with a tidy 16-2 strikeout-walk ratio, got sloppy. He walked two before allowing a two-out single. That put the Astros up again, 2-1. In the bottom of the 9th, the M's loaded the bases with one out but Torrens ground into a double play to end it. Yuck.
On the plus side, we didn't see that last part. We left after 8 because it was low 50s, rainy, and we were freezing. Plus my wife was still a little pissed about the purse. She might not be back anytime soon. But I get it, M's. When you're selling a product that has never won and seems unlikely to in the near future, featuring relative unknowns playing in often chilly temperatures, and in a stadium paid for by us but named for a corporation, with high-priced goods that are bad for you, well, in circumstances like those, you get to make your own rules.