The 2010 season is mercifully over, and the eulogies have started to pour in. From Larry Stone to Art Thiel, the local scribes have recapped the misery, with both detailing how this season is probably the worst in franchise history. Sure, they’ve lost more games in other years, but this was an epic failure in a year when at least a measure of success was expected. Off the field, the drama surrounding the organization served to create a circus atmosphere, which just compounded the ridiculousness of things like Josh Bard hitting fifth.
It requires no discernment to look back and point out what went wrong. We all lived through it and saw the disaster unfold with our own eyes. I, for one, don’t need a reminder of just how bad that was. Thankfully, it’s over now, and we can finally bury the 2010 season. Now, we look forward. And we should do so honestly and objectively – not with rose colored glasses, but also not through the lens of bitterness that 2010 forced us all to stare through.
The best thing we can all do is let this season go. It was like the worst date of our lives – just a train wreck of epic proportions. But, one bad date, or bad year in this case, doesn’t mean that you expect the next one to also be a horrible disaster. You put it behind you, you move on, and you figure out how to make the next one good.
That’s what the Mariners will try to do this winter – make 2011 enjoyable. It might be too much to ask to make 2011 a championship season, but you can fix a lot of problems in one winter with the right approach, and this front office has done this before. Their challenge will be to have their first off-season all over again, making smart moves and quality upgrades while keeping the team’s future in the forefront of their minds. This can be done.
This off season should actually be fun. I’m looking forward to writing about what the team could do and will do over the next few months. Following this team can be enjoyable again – you just have to be willing to let go of the pain that this year inflicted. Starting today, it’s a new year. Look forward, not back. That’s what we’re going to do, anyway.