King, Felix at Fan Fest

DMZ · January 30, 2006 at 12:47 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

From Kirby Arnold at the Everett Herald:

The Mariners’ 19-year-old right-hander arrived at Safeco Field on Saturday for the first day of the team’s FanFest as the new owner of a frosted-blond hairdo, a couple of diamond earrings, a fancy pickup truck and a Shih tzu puppy named “King.”

King Felix, as Hernandez has been called by those who consider him as baseball’s best young pitching prospect, hopes to match the flash with substance on the mound in 2006.

Not the hair! Noooooooooooooooooooooooo!!

And for all the noise over whether he’d compete in the WBC, he didn’t seem that upset that he’s not going:

The WBC’s technical committee ruled last week that Hernandez won’t play, and he’s not disappointed that he won’t play.

“I’m really not ready physically to compete, so I don’t want to embarrass myself that way,” he said.


29 Responses to “King, Felix at Fan Fest”

  1. msb on January 30th, 2006 12:55 pm

    my favorite Felix moment was when he was asked how long he was going to be a Mariner, and he paused, smiled evilly and said something to Gillian Hagamen (Baseball Information Assistant/Occasional Spanish Translator) who laughed, nudged him to repeat it, and when he wouldn’t do as she asked, said “well, first he said “As long as I want to be…”

  2. eponymous coward on January 30th, 2006 1:06 pm

    I take it he went to the same hairdresser as Joel? Hope his ERA doesn’t go the same way…

  3. Mr. Egaas on January 30th, 2006 1:09 pm

    Nice to see he’s not upset about not going. That’s the last thing we need is our boy pissed at the organization.

    I hope he knows he’s going to be very good for a very long time, and he will make a lot of money in due time if he takes care of himself.

  4. Evan on January 30th, 2006 1:17 pm

    He named his puppy King? That’s a nice touch.

    Shame it’s a Shih Tzu, though. That’s hardly a dog.

  5. msb on January 30th, 2006 1:41 pm

    oh, and speaking of the WBC, ESPN is going to carry the games….

  6. Evan on January 30th, 2006 1:47 pm

    Since the Canadian government won’t let me watch ESPN, that’s not terribly helpful.

  7. lotus eater on January 30th, 2006 1:59 pm

    This makes me a little nervous for some reason.

  8. lotus eater on January 30th, 2006 2:01 pm


    “I’m really not ready physically to compete, so I don’t want to embarrass myself that way,” he said.

    This makes me a little nervous for some reason.

  9. pdb on January 30th, 2006 2:10 pm

    Nobody’s really ready physically to compete. That’s what spring training’s usually for. But not this year, thanks to the WBC.

  10. msb on January 30th, 2006 2:53 pm

    #6– just for you, “Rogers Sportsnet will be the home of the World Baseball Classic, with coverage of Canada’s first and second-round games planned along with the semi-finals and final”

  11. Evan on January 30th, 2006 3:19 pm

    I figured. Rogers owns the Jays, so they have an interest in promoting the game.

    It was just an excuse for me to complain about the Canadian broadcast restrictions.

  12. Mat on January 30th, 2006 3:30 pm

    It looks like all the games are supposed to be on as well, if you buy their offseason package for the modest price of $9.95. That’s not a bad price if you’re just looking to see how well it works on your system, etc. I’m only slightly wary about what the blackout restrictions will be on the espn broadcasts.

  13. Evan on January 30th, 2006 3:35 pm

    I typically love’s blackout restrictions, because no part of Canada counts as Marinter territory.

    But, it’s sometimes difficult to verify my location given MLB’s inability to spell British Columbia properly.

  14. Grizz on January 30th, 2006 4:17 pm

    Brutish Columbia?

  15. Rusty on January 30th, 2006 4:17 pm

    Please excuse the analogy in advance… but I think of Felix’s upcoming 2006 performance as similar to the Seahawks’ offense performance in the Superbowl, the sky’s the limit and the opposition might have very little effect on either.

    BP’s PECOTA projections for Felix are pretty conservative. But even with conservative projections, there’s still only a half dozen AL starters with better projections for EqERA. And considering advantageous home park effects and perhaps superior defense, BP’s projections have him battling with Randy Johnson and Johan Santana for the ERA crown.

    I was at the Seahawk send-off yesterday and every time the Mariner fanfest was mentioned it elicited a chorus of boo’s. But every time they mentioned it I thought of Felix and smiled.

  16. Evan on January 30th, 2006 4:23 pm

    Randy doesn’t have a realistic shot at the ERA title, methinks. Santana, sure. Felix, absolutely. Halladay – there’s your missing man.

  17. Rusty on January 30th, 2006 4:40 pm

    I did some analysis on Halladay just after he broke his leg last year and was out for the rest of the season. The puzzling thing that stands out for me is his BB/9 rate…

    2002 2.0
    2003 0.8
    2004 2.2
    2005 0.9

    BP splits the difference by projecting him at 1.5 BB/9 next season. That makes some sense, but I’m wondering if we’re truly looking at a repeatable skill that would warrant an extrapolation to the midpoint in the range. And if Halladay does put up a 2.0 or 2.2 BB/9, he is much closer to say a John Lackey who has a BB rate projection of 2.8 but also a higher K rate than Halladay.

  18. Evan on January 30th, 2006 4:46 pm

    2004 was an arm injury year for Halladay. I can’t speak for 2002.

    Healthy, 2003 and 2005 are his established levels of performance. If he’d come back in September and made 3 more starts, he would have taken that ERA title last year.

  19. eponymous coward on January 30th, 2006 5:01 pm

    I was at the Seahawk send-off yesterday and every time the Mariner fanfest was mentioned it elicited a chorus of boo’s

    Wonder how those season ticket sales are going. FanFest attendance was down a bit Saturday from last year, apparently. I would expect season tickets to go down some as well, since the Seahawks will now be the hot team in town.

  20. msb on January 30th, 2006 5:28 pm

    #19– “Despite coming off back-to-back 90-loss seasons, team officials were heartened by attendance at the two-day FanFest. On Saturday, 5,149 trekked to Safeco Field, while 5,276 braved miserable conditions to attend the finale of the event on Sunday.”

    and I’m betting a lot of them Sunday were those self-same boo-ers from Qwest, judging from the jerseys and face paint I was seeing 🙂

  21. eponymous coward on January 30th, 2006 6:50 pm

    “Saturday’s attendance was down slightly from last year, but the team expected that after a second-straight 90-loss season.”

    I expect season tickets to be down slightly as well…and April attendance to be around 18-20K for the first few night weekday games in April.

    Attendance is a lagging indicator of team success, not a leading indicator…

  22. wabbles on January 31st, 2006 11:49 am

    I managed to get to FanFest late on Saturday. I’ve attended in 2002, 2004 and 2005. A glaring difference this year was the lack of M’s brass to grill about player acquisitions, etc. I wonder if they are beginning to sense the level of frustration and dissatisfaction and couldn’t find the nerve or patience to attend?

  23. msb on January 31st, 2006 1:11 pm

    #22– um, Bavasi, Lincoln, Hargrove, Pentland & Chaves were all there. The only one missing was Chuck Armstrong.

  24. msb on January 31st, 2006 1:29 pm

    oh, and Greg Hunter & Benny Looper.

  25. msb on January 31st, 2006 2:21 pm

    …were there, not missing. and were very interesting

  26. Deanna on January 31st, 2006 2:59 pm

    Yeah, seriously, there was plenty of brass. And never fear, EVERYONE asked them about Everett.

  27. jtopps on January 31st, 2006 11:17 pm

    Did they have any answers worth repeating?

  28. Deanna on January 31st, 2006 11:34 pm

    Not that I recall, they mostly seemed of the typical canned “We’ve talked to the guys he played with and his former managers and we think he’s going to be cool” type of responses. msb probably took better notes.

  29. msb on February 1st, 2006 10:28 am

    I think you covered it — veteran presence, good clubhouse influence, will get on players as needed, former teammates all gave him the thumbs-up, etc etc etc….

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