Mariners Analysis

Monday, March 31, 2008

Most interesting season ever?

I've been following the Mariners since the mid-80's, and we've had a few interesting offseasons. Griffey making the team, '96 after the Yankees series and massive fan resurgence in making the post season for the first time. The new ball park at Safeco. Maybe 2002 after the historic 116 win season.

But for me, this trumps them all in terms of interest and importance. This year we have more people then ever come out and publicly stake their claim on what this team will do, based on the changes made over the winter (or non changes in some cases).

There is little doubt Bavasi's job is on the line. And with that McLaren. Perhaps even Lincoln and company if the wheels fall off with enough force.

Yet if the team makes the playoffs, however ugly it may be, the FO will be with this team for many, many years.

This makes the season more important than ever. This isn't just a season. This is a regime defining moment. The people making the decisions for the next five years are likely to be decided by the teams play this year.

Beyond the team, we have plenty of bloggers who have weighed in and been pretty vocal about the changes made to the roster. Some are for it, some very against it. A lot of credibility will ride on this summer. If Bedard and Felix pitch like Cy Young candidates and Adam Jones is sent back to the minors before the All Star break, will USS Mariner take a credibility hit? If Vidro ends the season with a batting average in the top five, will Lookout Landing lose some fans?


Opinions might very well have to change. I have been on record on not supporting the Bedard trade as it was constructed. Will I have to change my thinking on baseball if this team plays like some believe it will? I think there has to be some soul searching on both sides.

And of course we have Mr. Baker of the Times. It's not often (ever?) you have a local journalist who supports the teams position over the winter and then comes out and says the team will make the playoffs. What will happen if the team tanks and Baker starts offering suggestions on the club come fall? Will anyone listen? Or will the posts become so negative they have to shut down the comments for a while until people cool off. Anything could happen.

Of course all this interest only adds to the season. We have even more reason to watch Bedard pitch. Watch Sexson take a big swing. Check the box scores looking for the Orioles. Did George blow a save? How's Raffy doing?

Today starts the most exciting season I have ever seen as a Mariner fan.

I can't wait.