Moore needs knee surgery: M’s backup catcher Adam Moore has torn knee cartilage and will need surgery. He’s out for at least a month, maybe longer. The M’s will make a roster move before today’s game, likely to recall Josh Bard from Tacoma.
The ceremony: Put on your white shoes for the Dave Niehaus remembrance. At 4 p.m., at the bronze mitt, the portion of 1st Ave. that runs along Safeco will be renamed “Dave Niehaus Way.” Gates open at 4:40, and the pre-game ceremonies begin at 6:30. Dave’s wife Marilyn will throw out the first pitch. I suspect some sort of video tribute will be in order. Ichiro and Franklin Gutierrez will be awarded their Gold Gloves. And there will be a moment of silence for the victims of the Japan earthquake, tsunami, and, now, another earthquake.
The music: Macklemore will perform his Dave Niehaus tribute song, “My Oh My” (video). If you haven’t seen Macklemore live — let’s just say he’ll be more dynamic than Death Cab for Cutie was last opening day. Navy Band Northwest will perform the National Anthem.
The food: That weird little bar behind the left field fence has been renovated and now features four “destination” concession stands with food from notable local chefs. Why get a hamburger and fries from Kidd Valley when you could try Ethan Stowell’s Hamburg + Frites, made with grass fed beef! (The hamburg, not the frites.)
The new technology: The M’s have installed 734 feet of ribbon scoreboard along the first- and third-base lines from the press box to the foul poles, and in right field. They’ll show game info, messages from the club, and, believe it or not, ads. You can also now order beer via Twitter from @msbeervendor.
The game: Mariners fastball/change artist Jason Vargas goes against Indians rookie righty Carlos Carrasco. Not to be confused with the Carlos Carrasco who played one of the guys on the bus in Speed , Carrasco is a 24-year-old Venezuelan who came to Cleveland when they traded Cliff Lee to Philly. Like Vargas, Carrasco’s two best pitches are his fastball and change.
Top 5 best Mariner opening days…
1) Baseball returns to Seattle, 1977
2) Presley HR ties it in 9th, Presley grand slam wins it in 10th, 1986
3) Griffey’s first MLB homer in first Kingdome AB, 1989
4) King Felix Ks 12 A’s, 2007
T5) Refuse to Lose continues in 12-inning win over White Sox with 57K crowd, 1996
T5) M’s late-inning magic in Ichiro’s first game, 2001
In other news…
Sounders striker Fredy Montero probably won’t play Saturday.
Save Our Sonics founder Brian Robinson is stepping away from efforts to bring an NBA team to Seattle.
If you saw a shaft of light shining down on Renton, it’s because savior Jake Locker worked out with the Seahawks yesterday. In very related news, this ESPN article by Seth Wickersham uses Locker as a prism to observe the flawed “science” of quarterback evaluation.
Husky senior Justin Holiday’s shooting woes continued at the Portsmouth Invitational, he was just 3-10 from the field, 0-2 from 3. Holiday did have 7 boards and 3 steals, though. Bainbridge High’s Steven Gray, playing for the same team, was 2-3 from three.
Seven days closer to a championship…
Today, April 8
M’s Opening Night vs. Cleveland @ Safeco, 7:10 p.m. Magnetic Schedules! (ROOT)
Saturday, April 9
Sounders vs. Chicago @ Qwest, 1 p.m. (KING-5)
Mariners vs. Cleveland @ Safeco, 6:10 p.m. Felix Bobblehead! (ROOT)
Sunday, April 10
Mariners vs. Cleveland @ Safeco, 1:10 p.m. Ichiro T-shirt! (ROOT)
Monday, April 11
Mariners vs. Toronto @ Safeco, 7:10 p.m. King Felix Day! (ROOT)
Tuesday, April 12
Mariners vs. Toronto @ Safeco, 7:10 p.m. Pineda Day! (ROOT)
Wednesday, April 13
Mariners vs. Toronto @ Safeco, 12:40 p.m. Mariners calendar! (ROOT)
Thursday, April 14
Mariners @ Kansas City, 5:10 p.m. (ROOT!)
Check out my Seattle sports calendar, currently listing all M’s, Sounders, Storm and Husky football games. I use it in conjunction with my Google calendar to make sure I don’t schedule bath time during a big game.