So far, in their quest to improve a terrible offense, the Seattle Mariners have fired the hitting coach, moved in the fences and acquired outfielder Jason Bay (age 34, .165 batting average) and utility man Robert Andino (age 28, .211 batting average). Our response: An eye roll and a mutter of “Typical Mariners.”
Supposedly, the team has some payroll to play with in 2013. Mike Napoli and B.J. Upton are gone, but free agents Nick Swisher, Michael Bourne and Josh Hamilton remain.
There is still plenty of time to acquire a bat or two. Maybe it will take giving up some of the prized young arms in the Seattle farm system. A Major League Baseball team doesn’t have to be built in December. But will the M’s be ready by opening day?
Ivan Yurchenko, a 27-year-old journalist from a Moscow newspaper, is doing a one-month internship with The Seattle Times. He went to his first American sport event, the Seahawks’ 58-0 pasting of the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. Here are few snippets from what he wrote:
• “A small shock was waiting for me on the way to the stadium. In Russia, when you go to a football (or hockey) game, you see five police cordons, army soldiers, trucks and Rottweilers. That’s part of the atmosphere of sports in Russia.
“In Seattle, the stadium is jammed for every game (around 70,000 people) and law enforcement is almost invisible.”
• “Then there is a support group called the Seagals. They had more clothes on than usual because of the cool weather, but their dancing was still incendiary.”
• “Twenty-two burly guys in helmets ran around together, slamming into each other in the struggle for a small ball. Running around, knock, stop! Then officials restarted the play, players repositioned themselves and the crush continued. All the time.”
• “Halfway through the game, the score was already very shameful for the guests.”