Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Damage Control 

Not very often does a pitcher give up 4 home runs and get credited with a Darned Good Start, but that was the story last night in Arlington. Staked to a 5-0 lead, Joel Pineiro did what he had to do, throwing strikes, and keeping baserunners off the bases. His only mistakes were 4 solo shots that made the game a little scary until Raul Ibanez put the final touches on a 7-4 Mariners win.

The win leaves the Mariners at 10-10 to start the season. At this time last season, the M's were losing their first of three straight to Texas to fall to 7-13. In fact, a year ago, Joel Pineiro LOST to Ryan Drese by a 10-8 score. In that game, Pineiro only gave up two solo home runs, but also allowed ten other baserunners and seven runs in 6 innings. What a difference a year makes.

A year ago, we lost our first six games in Arlington en route to a 2-7 record at the ballpark formerly known as The Ballpark in Arlington but is now known by yet another corporate entity that I don't even know (or care, commenters) what they do. I'm hoping last night returns the Rangers back to their rightful place as our bitches, in their own stadium, as I'm going to the August and September games.

Today's starter, Ryan Franklin, got crushed a year ago in Arlington, giving up 7 runs in 2 2/3 innings, the shortest start of his career. Look for the 2005 version to cruise to another Darned Good Start, and who knows, maybe today he'll even get run support.

How good does the Wilson Valdez pickup look right now? It appears Pokey's shoulder is more than just sore, as his rehab has been stopped and he is heading to Seattle for further examinations including a CRT on the shoulder.

If you haven't done so, rush out to the MLB site to vote for the All-Star Team, and make sure you put in your write-in votes for Wilson Valdez at shortstop. We need to make sure that his vote total AT LEAST surpasses that of Pokey Reese, who may otherwise get the votes of those fans who block vote for a team, or Red Sox fans who fondly remember their favorite defensive player (just think how good Pokey's defense must have looked to fans used to watching Nomar at short!)

David Corcoran had an excellent suggestion. Since the MLB site tracks votes per computer, go out and find any public access computers you can, and vote for Wilson from there. Not only are you supporting the Wilson Valdez for All-Star movement, but you are also shutting out other voters who are not as smart as you. Get to voting!

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