30 Teams. 30 Posts: Seattle Mariners.
Today I start 2012 with another installment of “30 Teams. 30 posts” project. I figure I should knock out this project more sooner than later as I have some fun ideas planned for the upcoming year. In any case, keep an eye out for “30 Teams. 30 posts” posts quite regularly from this point on. So here we go…
I think I speak for every member of my generation when I say that once Ken Griffey Junior made his MLB debut in 1989 that a part of me cheered for the Seattle Mariners on some level or another. At least this was the case for my friends and myself as Junior seemed to capture everyone’s attention and imagination as he quickly became a hero to an entire generation of Baseball fans. While I rooted for the A’s in the AL West, I still had nothing but love for Seattle as I soon became a fan of other Seattle players such as Alvin Davis, Edgar Martinez, Harold Reynolds and Jay Buhner.
Another reason I liked and continue to like the Mariners is the fact that they are a West Coast team and that they have had little to no post-season success during the history of the franchise. I tend to pull for teams on the West Coast and teams who have not had much success and the Mariners fall under this as they have not made it to the Fall Classic, let alone won it all. This is not to say that they have not had some amazing moments during their history as they have been to the post-season 4 times since entering the league in 1977. The ’95 Slide or the 116 win season are both amazing moments which Baseball fans of all kinds should appreciate.
I would love to see the Mariners contend soon but being in the same division as the Rangers and Angels is going to make this increasingly difficult in the near future. Stranger things have happened in Baseball but my gut says Seattle is closer to having more seasons like they had in 2011 then 2001. With that said, I will still be rooting for them right behind my A’s in the AL West.
As with all my 30 Teams. 30 posts installments, here are some team photos which I enjoy and would like to share:
Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr, Edgar Martinez and Jay Buhner. Like many Mariners fans I love all of these players with the exception of one. I will give you a hint who it is, it rhymes with “A-Fraud.”
Prior to Ken Griffey Junior and Edgar Martinez, Alvin Davis was the face of the Mariners. Davis was dubbed “Mr. Mariner” during a career in which he played 8 of his 9 years in the big leagues with Seattle. This included an incredible rookie season in 1984 in which he won Rookie of the Year and was voted to the All-Star game. Davis was voted into the Mariners Hall of Fame in 1997.
Edgar Martinez spent all 18 years of his career with the Mariners and from 1995 to the end of his career he was a full-time Designated Hitter. Some people use this to suggest he is not worthy of the Hall of Fame. I STRONGLY disagree and if I had a Hall of Fame vote, Edgar would be on my ballot without a doubt.
It’s amazing to think of what kind of numbers he would not have had to wait until the age of 27 to become a regular player due to being blocked at the 3B position. Edgar was a true professional hitter and it was a pleasure to see him rake with that incredible right-handed swing for parts of 3 decades.
If you remember the 1992 All-Star Game for anything it would have to be for Junior’s MVP performance. Griffey went 3 for 3 with a home run, a double, 2 walks and 2 runs scored. He also placed 2nd to Mark McGwire in the Home Run Derby the day before.
If there is one Pitcher in Baseball during my lifetime that I would have hated to hit against, I must say it would be Randy Johnson. When the day comes that the Big Unit is inducted into Cooperstown, the question of whether he goes in as a Mariner or Diamondback will surely be brought up. I assume it will be AZ due to the 4 straight Cy Young awards and World Series ring however there are some compelling reasons that he could go in as a Mariner too.
One of the more beautiful things in Baseball and in all of sports: Ichiro Suzuki at the plate. The fact that Ichiro fell short of 200 hits and hitting over .300 last season for the first time in his MLB career still blows my mind. I would not be surprised whatsoever if he comes back in 2012 with a monster season.