Game 43: White Sox 2, Mariners 1

Apart from the face that they lost and there wasn’t a whole lot of offense from Seattle, there was a lot of good from this game. Miranda spun a gem, Diaz proved he’s still the best arm in the bullpen, and there’s still baseball in the Emerald City.

The Devil Is Alive and Nobody Cares But Me

I need to start off with a rant of sorts, it has to do with somebody I view as the face of evil in American sports: alex rodriguez. Anyone close to me can testify to the physical change that comes over me when this man comes up in conversation. I really, really, really don’t like him. I don’t capitalize his name. Yes, this has everything to do with the 2000 offseason. I understand that the hatred would be localized in the Northwest after his greedy departure and tearful failure at the 2001 Home Run Derby. I was there during his first series back in Seattle after going to the Rangers, never have I heard a crowd that loud. Never. The foundations of the new and securely built Safeco field buckled and shook under the rage of over 40,000 red-faced (and otherwise pasty) Washingtonians.

So, keep all that rage in the Northwest, but has anyone else forgotten about the multiple PED incidents? Or slapping the glove in the 2004 playoffs? Or the simple fact that he played for the New York Yankees? Let it be clear that Joe Buck or Fox Sports are not necessarily my beacon for moral excellence, but when I see photos like this:

 

so proudly retweeted by Fox Sports, I can’t help but feel like I’m the only one who sees evil being praised. I feel like Bart Simpson trying to convince Homer and Marge that the apparently friendly and charming new neighbor is actually Sideshow Bob. Anyway, I have strong feelings about this guy.

Miranda Keeps Doing Good Things

Ariel Miranda keeps doing things way above his pay grade (relative to other MLB pitchers, if I was getting paid half a million a year, I’d expect perfection from myself every time. He came out and ate up seven innings with nine Ks, an excellent start from even the most elite names in the game today.

Edwin Diaz also showed what we expected to see from him in a two-inning outing in relief of Miranda. The guys at Baseball Prospectus discussed the state of the save and how things have changed for closers so much this year. One of the main things they discussed was Servais’ use of Diaz for two innings, looking for a six out save. Perhaps this was Diaz’s opportunity to show he still has it, maybe it was just a relief spot. Either way, he showed that he’s still the best arm in the bullpen.

“We are working on staying back, try and throw the ball in front,” Diaz said. “I think they we’re closer to throwing the ball pretty good down and away and I need to throw the ball over there, and today was a pretty good sign.”

Haniger Slowing Rehab

Amongst one million other injuries, Mariner fans are eager to see Mitch Haniger back in uniform. He’s been expected to join the M’s on their upcoming road trip to Boston, Washington DC and Denver, with a rehab stint in Modesto starting this weekend, however those plans have been stalled to keep him health, according to MLB.com’s Greg Johns

“At the end of the workout yesterday, he was still a little tender,” Servais said of Haniger’s rehab. “Nothing totally alarming, but we figured let’s slow down a little instead of just shooting him out and now he’s in a competitive situation.”

Let’s hope to get him back soon AND  strong.

The M’s play game three of the series against Chicago tonight and wrap it up on Sunday before heading to Washington DC to face the Nationals and Bryce Harper’s beard.