Attention Mariners’ Management!

Went to the Mariners-Indians game yesterday afternoon; a lovely, warm day to sit and cheer (jeer?) from the left field bleachers. In the 2010 season for the Mariners, there has been little to cheer for. A manager losing control of his clubhouse, even fighting with players. Even sadder, the flacid fade of a former superstar and hometown favorite, icon Ken Griffey Jr. Surely Griffey will be a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but maybe he should have went out on the high note of the end of last season. The worst transgression of all this Mariners season? In my mind, it is how Interim Manager Daren Brown has reined in King Felix Hernandez in recent, dominant starts. Yesterday’s performance and subsequent yanking after the eighth inning was almost a carbon copy of his start on August 10th against the As, which I was also in attendance for. All Felix did back in August was to set a new career-high in strikeouts (13), besting his previous best from Opening Day 2008 (I was there, too!), again against the As. Yesterday, Felix was cruising through the likes of Travis “MeatWad” Hafner and Shin-Soo Choo Choo Train of Pusan, South Korea. Through 4 innings, Felix had his fastball flexing enough to rack up 7 strikeouts, but then cooled it on the swing-and-miss strategy for a couple innings. By the end of the 8th, he had thrown 111 pitches, hardly a topping-out point for him, and compiled 9 strikeouts. Apparently, Brown, in an attempt to show some moxie to the front office and stab at landing the job for real, had seen enough of this silly domination of the opposing hitters. So he pulls him, inbetween innings, so we couldn’t applaud the King’s efforts one last time as he faced a last batter in the 9th…or maybe just pitched a complete fucking game!! Does Aardsma really need the work in the 9th? Does he need to give fans like me another heart attack by squeezing out another over-5.00 ERA save? No, he doesn’t. By no means. If I were the interim manager of a super shitty team, going down the stretch run of a lost and sunken season, I would sit back, let Felix pitch. Maybe even go back to the clubhouse to get a sandwich and take a nap. Just let him finish scoring another masterpiece on the mound. The guy’s a fuckin’ Mozart out there and he hasn’t even come close to thinking about composing his Requiem. Before the game started, my buddy and I looked up to the jumbotron just in time to see that Felix had a 0.24 ERA spanning his last 5 starts. That’s downright stoopid, dumb, crazy dominant. So, Daren Brown, just leave the bullpen phone on the hook when he’s on the mound and let us figure out how to get the Seattle crowd energized enough to give a curtain call to, quite possibly, the best pitcher in baseball!
And that’s saying a lot coming from a Red Sox fan.

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