The designated time and calendar coordinates having arrived, that is to say now just a month away from Pitchers and Catchers reporting to Spring Training Camps in Arizona and Florida, it is time also for me to once again make my annual pledge to be both a better Baseball Blogger and a better human being.
It’s most likely that I will only be able to do one of the two, and most people would concentrate on being a better person. But I am not “most people.”
Also we are anticipating a few major life events to happen to our family in 2016. First, it looks like – assuming that the insurance company finally agrees – that I will be having knee replacement surgery in late Winter or the early part of the Spring.
Then, we are planning to relocate to Tacoma, my wife’s hometown sometime between July and September, assuming my recovery goes well.
Lastly this will mean job changes for my wife and probably for me, unless the VA gets off it’s duff and approves my disability claim.
So how will all of this effect this blog?
Well, first off, leaving the Central Valley will make it less able to closely follow the Stockton Ports, although with the internet and such, it seems like that would be easy. The problem is that love fades with distance unless there is a hard connection like most people have with a MLB Team. Over time and distance, I have lost interest in my hometown Ogden Raptors (even as a Dodgers Affiliate) and my all time favorite AAA Team, The Tacoma Rainier’s.
But now that we will be back in Tacoma, albeit near the end of the season, they will again assume front burner status. Moreover, while the Dodgers, thanks to MLB.com and Extra Innings, will remain an integral part of my day, the return to the PACNORWEST means that I will once again, probably as passionately as I did in the 1980’s and 90’s follow the Mariners. Especially with no reasonable chance of them ever meeting in the World Series. The Facebook Page will continue to be the place for quick stuff like news and box scores. Here I will talk about what I saw and felt and liked and even disliked about a particular game.
The bigger thing though is that every year at this time I sit down and plan to write about Baseball. From my own perspective as a fan, not a Stat Wonk or or broadcaster or a player. Just a casual fan who loves the game very much.
And maybe that will help me to be a better person, too?
Do you want to know how fickle Baseball can be? RANDY JOHNSON IS GOING TO THE HALL OF FAME WEARING A DIAMONDBACKS CAP.
I take you now in the way-back machine, back to September 20, 1986, Seattle, in the accursed Kingdome. To celebrate my 23rd birthday, myself and a group of friends attended the (once again last place) Mariners game that night, against the defending champs, the Kansas City Royals. Pitching for the Mariners that night was one of some young pitchers obtained in a trade earlier in the season by the name of… wait for it…
Brett Saberhagen was going for the Royals.
The trade had sent the Mariners beloved lefty Mark Langston to the Expos for the three prospects, including Randy Johnson, who at the time was a VERY tall fireballer with no control whatsoever. He scared the living daylights out of hitters because he was throwing so hard and so wildly. He was Nuke LaLoosh a couple of years before there was a Nuke LaLoosh.
The Mariners, as usual, had a terrible year, finishing a mere 25 games back of the Angels and four back of the 6th Place Minnesota Twins. If you were looking for a high point, it was the night of September 20th, when a new, young Mariners arm took the mound against Brett Saberhagen and the Champion Royals. Read the rest of this entry