A few quick points before I head off to bed:
1. Jeff Cirillo went 4-for-4 with a walk. I still don’t think he’s going to hit much this year, but hey, you have to at least point it out when he does well.
2. You (Derek) mentioned earlier that you weren’t sold on Winn. I certainly wasn’t all that excited when he joined the team, but so far I like what I’m seeing. He’s been very patient thus far, with eight walks in eleven games. Small sample, sure, but it looks like he’s taking a good approach at the plate. If he keeps walking like this, good things (i.e., a .380 OBP) will happen.
3. Meche. Good: 6 K’s in 5 2/3, so the stuff is certainly there at times. After A-Rod’s homer in the first he got Raffy Palmeiro on a very nice 2-2 curve, after falling behind in the count 2-0. I also liked how he worked to Juan Gonzalez in the first, hitting the corners, even though it resulted in a walk. Bad: 4 walks in those same 5 2/3, and he fell behind quite a few hitters, particularly in the first three innings. He got better as the game went on, though. Getting ahead of hitters I mean. I would post the numbers but for some reason ESPN’s pitch-by-pitch gamelog cuts out two batters into the top of the sixth inning at the moment, and I don’t want to post ’em if they aren’t complete.
Carl “No Dinosaur” Everett takes the Golden Expletive for the most clearly audible swearword televised from Safeco so far this season, when Meche fooled him and he yelled “F—!” before taking his well-deserved walk to the dugout. Say what you will about Meche’s start tonight, but I feel that any start that involves an Everett plunking can’t be a complete failure.
Meche reminds me a lot of the injured-but-not-yet-discovered-to-be-injured Meche: some of his pitches were great, with wicked movement. And then some of them were awful, the Todd Van Poppel special: flat fastball, letter-high.
I don’t know if that’s a result of the surgery and rehab, or what. So far this year I haven’t seen a lot of evidence he shouldn’t be in AAA until it’s clear he’s ready for the majors. The problem, though, is that if you’re already optimistic, you point to the good stuff and write off the others as jitters, or something he’ll get over as he gets stronger during the season.
Not to be outdone, I had some rather interesting fans sitting behind me Friday night as well. We began with a run of he-said, she-said allegations about how ballplayers are all such evil people. College-age woman: “I was in line at Hagen’s yesterday, and this girl started telling me about how Bret Boone was hitting on her. That’s so awful… he’s married!” Her mother followed up with: “When I worked at such-and-such, I knew a woman who was Ken Griffey Jr.’s mistress.” Great, now so far we’ve got a random allegation and an unsubstantiated rumor. To complete the trifecta, the dad chimes in with: “These ballplayers aren’t exactly known for their nice behavior or being good people, you know.” Say what you will about the M’s on the field, but off the field they’re pretty good guys, with Dan Wilson and Jamie Moyer heading the list.
Later, we dealt with the inevitable blather about how Alex Rodriguez was so evil for taking all the money the Rangers offered him. It’s all so trite, so predictable.
Oh, and Meche doesn’t look very good so far tonight, either.
This week’s Overhead at the Ballpark:
“When you see a little kid at the supermarket or something and they’re wearing mismatched clothes, you have to just love them because it means their parents are letting them pick out their own outfits. I had this girl in my kindergarten and she wore her braids in this really weird way (gesturing) because she liked it, and her clothes… they obviously didn’t have a lot of money, but wouldn’t you know it, before the end of the year, she was my favorite out of the whole class.”
— extremely drunk kindergarten teacher who would later spill beer all over my wife and me.