USSMariner Gathering Reminder

Dave · March 27, 2006 at 7:21 am · Filed Under Mariners 

For those who didn’t check the blog over the weekend and see the original post on Friday, here’s the information on our next USSM trip to Safeco. We still have quite a few spots available, and everyone who has signed up so far is in.

Sunday, April 2nd, from 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm at Safeco Field

We’ve got space for 200 people to come join Derek, Jeff, Jason, and myself for four hours inside Safeco on the eve of opening day. 24 hours before the season kicks off, you get to come hang out with us as we spend a few hours talking baseball and having a good ol time.

Of course, we won’t be the only people talking. Once again, Mariners General Manager Bill Bavasi has graciously agreed to give up a good portion of his free time and participate in a question and answer session. Quite simply, this is a unique opportunity for Mariner fans to get together and pick the brain of the guy who makes the decisions.

Four hours of baseball talk, including time with the number one guy in the front office the day before the season starts? Hard to beat that, honestly.

We’ve done our best to keep the costs as low as possible, and we’re really happy we can offer this get together for $15 per person. That will include snacks and drinks, so while it’s not a feed, you will be able to get fatter while attending, which is a nice plus.

If you’re interested in attending, here’s what you need to do: send an email to with the number of people you’re requesting spots for in the subject. In the body of the message, I need full names of those who will be coming under your reservation.

Due to the event being just nine days away, we’re going to have you pay-as-you-enter to avoid problems with the postal service and getting checks around in time. We’re counting on your good faith to attend the event if you sign up; we’re paying for your spot whether you come or not, so if you don’t come and don’t pay, that’s money out of our pockets.

One last note; we’re making one minor change to how we handled the event last summer. Instead of a free-for-all where everyone gets the mic and we pray that they ask a question that isn’t insulting and makes sense, this time around, the Q&A will be moderated. If you have a question you’d like to hear Bavasi answer, leave it in the comments of this thread, and we’ll cull the best ones and make sure they get asked.

Also, any general questions that you think may be of interest to others, feel free and ask in the comments.


36 Responses to “USSMariner Gathering Reminder”

  1. David J. Corcoran on March 27th, 2006 7:28 am

    Sheez Louise. I may have to re-evaluate my stance not to come.

  2. ScottH on March 27th, 2006 7:50 am

    I am already registered, but I was wondering, what entrance do we go to on Sunday?

  3. Replacement level Poster on March 27th, 2006 8:55 am

    I’m really excited to go. Since I’m driving up from Oregon I just want to make sure I didn’t mess up in my email request to join, will there be a confirmation email or anything? Thanks for setting this up guys!

  4. msb on March 27th, 2006 9:01 am

    #2– my question too!

  5. Cap on March 27th, 2006 9:01 am

    I also am wondering about a confirmation of some sort. Thanks 🙂

  6. Jeff Nye on March 27th, 2006 9:08 am

    Add me to the list wondering about confirmation emails.

    Mostly because I, well, entirely disregarded the instructions in my enthusiasm the first time and I had to send another email!

  7. Evan on March 27th, 2006 9:15 am

    In addition to the question about which entrace to use…

    I’m driving down from Vancouver for this thing. Any suggestions as to where I should park?

    I’ve only ever visted Safeco on foot, and only for games, so I have no idea what the parking situation near the stadium (does the stadium itself have parking?) might be.

  8. ConorGlassey on March 27th, 2006 9:35 am

    Evan – You should park on the road just east of the railroad tracks. I’m not sure what it’s called – but there’s free parking there.

    Also – where is the meeting taking place? Is it in the same room as before?

  9. Hit and Run on March 27th, 2006 9:36 am

    My question for Bill Bavasi.

    “What are the Mariners doing to be in the fore front of preventing pitcher injuries. Do they plan to use using any advanced biomechanic evaluations for pitchers like those done at The American Sports Medicine Institute?

    What do know about Will Carroll’s criticism of Mariner’s pitching injury record and Mike Marshall’s criticism of MLB in general?”

  10. Evan on March 27th, 2006 10:27 am

    You should park on the road just east of the railroad tracks.

    You mean right on 4th Ave? Or 3rd Ave?

  11. Dave on March 27th, 2006 10:47 am

    We still have quite a few spots available, and everyone who has signed up so far is in.

    Guess I was wrong in my assumption that that sentance may serve as a pseudo confirmation for you guys. I’d rather not send out 200 “you’re in!” emails, so no news is good news; if you’ve applied, you’re in.

    A detailed info with parking info (we’re getting to park in the garage) will be forthcoming in a few days.

  12. Red Sox Girl on March 27th, 2006 10:52 am

    I hope everyone has an awesome time. Are you able to post some of the Q & A’s on here for those of us that can’t attend?

  13. Deanna on March 27th, 2006 10:52 am

    It’s not so much a confirmation email to make sure “you’re in” but to make sure the email actually got through. I realized later that the “mailto” link actually had a trailing ” at the end of it, which I *thought* I’d removed when sending the email, but since I hadn’t gotten a “failure to deliver message” message back, I figured my mail went through and I was signed up for the event.

    Either that, or Dave was serious about banning me from the event for my Corco joke a few weeks back…

  14. Evan on March 27th, 2006 11:00 am

    Someone hug Dave.

    I hate navigating – knowing there’s parking for us saves me a bunch of stress.

  15. Grizz on March 27th, 2006 11:24 am

    My question:

    “When management decided to forego the long-standing team policy against ‘Attila the Hun’ types this offseason, why didn’t you acquire an Attila in his advancing-against-the-Gauls phase such as Milton Bradley, instead of a retreating-from-Italy Attila like Carl Everett?”

  16. David J. Corcoran on March 27th, 2006 11:25 am

    Never fear, Deanna, Corco will be unable to make special guest appearances until September, when he will finally move away from beautiful McCall, Idaho.

  17. Jim Thomsen on March 27th, 2006 11:47 am

    Same ground rules as before?

    I’d like to attend, but I’d also like to be free to report on it in my weekly baseball column in the Kitsap Sun that runs Sundays (so anything I wrote would be a week after the fact).

  18. DMZ on March 27th, 2006 11:53 am

    Scratch Jim off the invite list.

  19. Jim Thomsen on March 27th, 2006 11:54 am

    Ah, okay. Crap.

  20. Dave on March 27th, 2006 11:57 am


    Check your yahoo account.

  21. vj on March 27th, 2006 12:58 pm

    A question for Bavasi – someone may have suggested it already:
    The reasons not to pursue freely available talent like Branyan, Choi or now Pena?

  22. msb on March 27th, 2006 1:08 pm

    A detailed info with parking info (we’re getting to park in the garage) will be forthcoming in a few days.


    from Deanna: I realized later that the “mailto” link actually had a trailing ” at the end of it, which I *thought* I’d removed when sending the email, but since I hadn’t gotten a “failure to deliver message” message back, I figured my mail went through and I was signed up for the event.

    I noticed the extra ] when my mailer barfed my reply back at me 🙂

  23. eponymous coward on March 27th, 2006 1:09 pm

    If this is a four hour event, does that mean we’ll get a tour?

    (I got to go to a company ChristmasHoliday party one year and played pool in front of Edgar’s locker, plus I took batting practice in the visiting batting cage and went into the visiting dugout. That was neat. I imagine we won’t get the same access since the season will be starting and I imagine clubhouse attendants will be shoving stuff into lockers and so on, but I’ve never been to the broadcast booths…

  24. Dave on March 27th, 2006 1:13 pm

    Sorry, no tour.

  25. eponymous coward on March 27th, 2006 1:18 pm

    Ah, well…

  26. ConorGlassey on March 27th, 2006 2:03 pm

    We get a tour of Bavasi’s brain – Psychonauts style!

  27. dlupham on March 28th, 2006 8:16 am

    One comment on parking. On Sundays, all on street “legal” parking is free. For Mariners games 1st Avenue is closed to parking but since there is no game on Sunday all of the spots should be open.

    David Upham

  28. Adam S on March 28th, 2006 8:55 am

    Another question for Bavasi:

    Over the past couple of season the Mariners have released a number of players who weren’t performing up to their contracts — Spiezio, Boone, Olerud, Aurilia (and will soon do the same with Everett). What has the organization learned from this experience, specifically with regard to offering long term contracts?

  29. eponymous coward on March 29th, 2006 9:19 am

    Bill, after seeing the minor leaguers in spring training, who is someone we might not be familiar with who might surprise us this season in the Mariner minor league system?

    Who would you say has the best ability to judge the strike zone as a hitter in the minor league system? The best fastball?

  30. plivengood on March 29th, 2006 10:05 am

    We all know that the Thornton-for-Borchard deal was a trade of players each team stood to lose if they didn’t keep them, and couldn’t use if they did keep them. Considering team needs, I think most of us think you did very well. However, considering the context, and Borchard’s struggles in Chicago, what do you think is a reasonable expectation for him this season?

  31. Spiegs on March 29th, 2006 12:25 pm

    Out of town this weekend but I have a question I’d love someone to ask Bill Bavasi. This organization made such a big deal about not giving Freddy Garcia a long-term deal and than goes a season and a half and signs a mediocre pitcher at best in Jarrod Washburn. Freddy signed for $10.5 million less than Washburn and is arguably a much better pitcher. Any regrets?

  32. Evan on March 29th, 2006 2:05 pm

    Derek reminded me of another question.

    When Grover talks to the press, is he just spewing the party line, or does he actually believe the stuff that comes out of his mouth?

    Oh, and how much input does Grover have with regard to roster decisions, especially given his demonstrated inability to correctly identify talent.

  33. eponymous coward on March 29th, 2006 4:17 pm

    I wouldn’t expect real hard-hitting answers to questions that are basically “Why do you suck?”. I tried to sort of sneak one in in the other thread, but even then it’s more “Why do you think Billy Beane is successful at what he does?” than “God, why do your decisions blow so much?”- and Dave/DMZ.Jeff, whoever, if you want to rephrase or massage the wording of that question, feel free. Basically, I’d like a GM’s insight on why he thinks OTHER GMs strengths are (and maybe even where our front office can learn from other organizations).

    I’m more interested in illuminating Mr Bavasi’s thinking processes and getting the benefits of his insight (because I truly think he does have it…I’m just not convinced being a MLB GM is where his talents lie) than using a Q&A as an excuse to go “You suck, and so does the whole front office and your manager”.

  34. Oly Rainiers Fan on March 29th, 2006 6:39 pm

    Is the # of pitchers to carry exclusively the manager’s (Hargrove’s) decision or is Bavasi involved in it and if so, to what extent. Discuss the reasons that Hargrove and/or Bavasi feel that carrying extra pitchers is apparently more important than carrying extra bench players? Is it general philosophy on both their parts, or is it specific to the makeup of this particular team at present?

    Also, I’d like to know his thoughts on how, when, and to what extent fan favorite/player loyalty issues are considered when constructing the roster for the following year. We know that releasing Edgar, for example, would have been unthinkable while releasing others (as pointed out above) wasn’t. Is it # of years with an organization? Performance? Cost? What about re-signing players such as Moyer, who have a demonstrated record of success with the organization and in the community over a number of years. When re-negotiating a contract such as that, do you play a lot of hardball and try to get him as cheap as you can, or is there some sort of loyalty benefit that the player can or even should be able to expect?

  35. Evan on March 30th, 2006 10:00 am

    I don’t want to tell Bavasi he sucks. I just want to understand why certain types of moves get made. Like signing Everett, for example.

  36. Illex Squid on March 30th, 2006 10:37 am

    Mr. Coward- nicely said, and ironically courageous 🙂 I’m sure we’d all like explanations for this or that move that we all thought were mistakes, but I think the point is that there’s a difference between a question on a specific issue and a general “What is your thought process”, which is not likely to get a very revealing answer. I went to the Q&A that the BP people had in Peoria a few weeks back (thanks again Jonah) and the questions that were most completely and interestingly answered had to do with a specific move the M’s made. One guy (credentialled press, no less) was throwing out hypotheticals he thought the M’s should have done, but his questions-in-the-form-of-a-statement didn’t elicit much response from Bavasi. And one fairly direct question along the lines of “How does it feel this year with your job on the line?” got an impressively composed and thoroughly unilluminating response: “If I am doing something differently when I think my job’s on the line I shouldn’t have that job in the first place.”

    Anyhow, at the Peoria thing Bill said that when he came to the M’s they were reputed to be an organization deep in pitching “but really weren’t.” I didn’t follow that up at the time but if I could I’d like to ask him, given that there were a number of pitchers in the system who had performed well (Soriano, Blackley, and Nageotte are the three examples that come to mind), if he thinks there’s a developmental issue in the organization or that it’s just bad luck and injury that makes these pitching prospects not pan out.

    And for the record, I don’t believe pitchers are prospects until they get close to the show (King Felix was the exception) but I’d like to see if that’s what Bill thinks.

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