SEATTLE -- I’m preparing for the Seahawks huge season opener on Thursday night by doing something I’ve never done in the days leading up to the NFL regular season at the start of September: Watching – and caring about – the Seattle Mariners.
I know the latest homestand was less than stellar, but tomorrow is September 1st, and the M’s are bonafide playoff contenders, within reach of a playoff spot. For more than a decade, this is what we’ve been clamoring for – so it’s only appropriate that they have our full attention. Whether they win or lose, we finally have a chance to watch September games that matter, and whether you’ve jumped on the bandwagon or not, it’s worth keeping on your radar.
After all, this is the time of year that we normally want to throw tomatoes - and ice cream sandwiches – at the organization. But we’ll let their own personnel throw them at each other, while we sit back and enjoy a legitimate playoff push.
Numbers-wise, the final month works out well. Two-thirds of their games are on the road, where they’re actually a significantly better team – 11-games over .500. The next three nights, they’re also playing an Oakland team that went scoreless for a mind-boggling 29 straight innings until late in today’s game. Safe to say, they’re catching the struggling A’s at the perfect time.
Listen – I want Thursday night to get here sooner than anyone. I can’t wait to see the Seahawks Super Bowl Championship banner to go up. I can’t wait to once again have the national spotlight in a big-time prime time game at CenturyLink Field.
But it’s refreshing that the nightly monotony leading up Thursday can be filled by another team in this city.
If the Mariners end up missing the playoffs, fine. And while many naysayers might brush them off as “The Same Ol’ Mariners,” I’ll be the first to defend them, saying that it’s the first time in forever that they’ve played meaningful games in September – that the future is actually promising – and that the foundation is finally built for a successful run in the next few years.
We’ve been critical of the M’s before – and as fans, we have every right to do so if things turn sour again.
But for now, it’s time to get on board, and support the organization’s surprising turnaround this year.
And at the very least, it’ll make the long and arduous wait for Thursday night’s Seahawks game a little easier to handle.