I attended the annual meeting of the NW SABR group I belong to yesterday as part of Mariners Fan Fest at the Ellis Pavillion inside the bowels of Safeco Field away from the hoopla happening on the diamond. I got there a little late but caught the tai
l end of Jack Z”s preseason pep talk and was able to listen to the indomitable Eric Wedge and his view on where we are at and where we are going.
Of course it is hard not buy into anything Eric Wedge has to say as he is genuinely an optimistic guy with great positive energy. Both he and Jack Z. were quite frank about how last year was a failure but that 2012 would be the year when we started to see things take shape. Wedge was quite candid about a lot of topics and I got to ask him if this year”s daily lineup would have some more consistency, to which he replied that it should be a little more predictable this season now that we have some known entities, but he has to see his team in Peoria to tighten things up. Wedge brought his wonderful wife Kate Wedge in for a brief introduction which was nice as well in that she is such a down to earth woman who seems to really care about the team and its relationship to the folks here in Seattle.
What I took away from the meeting was that the Seattle Mariners will field an improved team this year but nobody is expecting to make a serious run at the AL West title. The rebuilding process is going to take shape this year and we may actually be able to see it for our own eyes, but I got to say I”m more of a baseball fan than a “rebuilding of a Team”. Now of course lots of Bloggers and diehard fans seem to love talking about prospects, keeping within budget and future draft picks which is fine but after 35 years many of us a re just tired of losing and waiting for our shot at glory. The truth is lots of Mariners fans have already given up hope and moved on to soccer, hiking and boating during our brief summer months here. Of course the diehards like those who write and read Mariners Blogs will be there as usual, along with the casual fans who come for the hydro races and bobbleheads, but the last 10 years have been brutal and thus it looks like attendance will continue to suffer barring a miracle. I do have confidence we may be contenders within 2-3 years, but by then Safeco Field may continue to serve more as a theme park for baseball rather than the home of an exciting baseball team in the hunt down the stretch. Oh well at least we know the Mariners are following the blueprint that Jack Z. brought with him which appears to be ready to look real in 2012 with or without the support of the local Fan base. Go M”s! http://jeffsmariners.com