Who are these Mariners?

Tom Wilhelmson and Jesus Montero celebrate after the final out of last night's Mariners game
Tom Wilhelmson and Jesus Montero celebrate after the final out of last night’s Mariners game

I was able to watch the last three innings of last night’s game in New York. It was gritty, nail-biting baseball at its best.  After Tuesday night’s debacle, I couldn’t even watch the Wednesday demolition Phil Hughes.  I figured if Iwakuma stepped on the mound he’d fall into a pit of hidden punji stakes and the Yankees would win by default.  Instead, it was New York’s turn to suffer a little bit of bad luck as their starter didn’t make it out of the first inning.

Last night, however, was a different kettle of fish.  With projected starter Aaron Harang out with a stiff back, insert Hector Noesi-plan for doom.  But Noesi pitched well, give him credit. When I turned on the game the Mariners led 3-1.  Though they gave up another run, somehow Oliver Perez, Carter Capps, Lucas Luetge, and Tom Wilhelmson managed, to cough, snort, wheeze and belch through the remaining innings but avoid the full body chokefest of Tuesday night, hanging on to the win and the series victory.

This team feels a bit different Somehow I don’t see this team as the same Zdurencik/Wedge teams of the last few years.  In the past, after a dissappointing loss this team would go straight into the can, with a long stretch of losing baseball ahead.  This feels different.  Maybe it’s the veterans on the team.  Maybe it’s the winning.  Maybe it’s the kids getting hungry.

But tell me you weren’t cheering when Kendrys Morales corraled Brendan Ryan’s errant throw to keep Ichiro at third.  Tell me you weren’t watching through your fingers, rubbing your rabbit’s foot when Wilhelmson got Robinson Cano to ground out to end the game despite his early wildness.  Doesn’t this feel different?

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