The Mariners went C3PO on us from Monday through Thursday, but petitioned to join the National League West after sweeping Colorado Friday-Sunday; the Sounders sneaked out of Vancouver with a 2-2 tie on a remarkable goal by Fredy Montero, and the Storm had an epic el foldo in their season opener. This Was The Week That Was:
MAY 14-20, 2012
- GOOD WEEK — Not only did Kevin Millwood begin the week with his first win in a Mariners uniform, he ended it by becoming just the fourth opposing pitcher in Coors Field history — 1,440 games — to throw a shutout at the Rockies while allowing two or fewer hits. It was also Millwood’s first shutout since 2003, coincidentally the last time the Mariners won 90 games in a season.
- BAD WEEK — Mariner manager Eric Wedge opened the week by upbraiding Ichiro for failing to produce anything meaningful out of the No. 3 hole. The chiding did little good as Ichiro had one of the worst situational-hitting weeks of his career, going 7-for-43 (.163) with runners in scoring position. He also had a .234 OBP, a .262 slugging mark and an OPS of .496 — all this from a career .328 BA, .430 OBP, .406 SLG, .837 OPS situational batter.
- PLAY OF THE WEEK — Fredy Montero tallied a remarkable equalizer in the 90th minute, allowing the Sounders to tie the Whitecaps at 2 and keep Seattle (7-2-2) unbeaten on the road in its last 11 away matches. “Obviously, when they went up 2-1, they pretty much thought they had it, and then Fredy scores a great goal,” said coach Sigi Schmid.
- EX-SEATTLE JOCKS OF THE WEEK –Former Sonic Kevin Durant led the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 3-1 lead over the Los Angeles Lakers in their second-round playoff series by averaging 27.5 points and 7.7 rebounds, including 31 points and 13 rebounds in a Game 4 win Saturday . . . Jamie Moyer matched his career high with two RBIs (set with Seattle in 2004) and pitched (one earned run on six hits) the Colorado Rockies to a 6-1 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks Wednesday . . . Federal Way’s Travis Ishikawa homered twice and drove in a career-high five runs Tuesday, leading the Milwaukee Brewers past the Mets 8-0.
- WHERE ARE THEY NOW? — Phil Bradley, who played left field for the Mariners from 1983-87, is a special assistant to the executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Assn. Bradley did two memorable things as a Mariner: On April 13, 1985, he hit an “ultimate grand slam,” a three-run deficit erased with two outs in the ninth, off Ron Davis, which gave the Mariners an 8-7 win over Minnesota. On April 29, 1986, Bradley became Roger Clemens’ 20th and final victim in a game in which Clemens established a single-game major league strikeout record.
- SUNDAY, May 20 — The Mariners complete an unforeseen sweep of the hapless (any team the Mariners sweep is, by default, hapless) Colorado Rockies with a 6-4 win at Coors Field. Jesus Montero and Justin Smoak hit back-to-back home runs, Mike Carp also homers, and Blake Beavan matches a season high with seven strikeouts. Only negative: the suddenly Bobby Ayala-ish Brandon League, who gave up a walk-off single to Carlos Santana Thursday, allows two runs in the ninth, including a homer.
- SATURDAY, MAY 19 — The Mariners at Coors Field bangout a 10-3 win over the Rockies while holding Colorado scoreless for 15 innings over two games. Jason Vargas allows three runs on five hits, gets a hit himself, and Kyle Seager goes 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs, Seattle’s second straight win after four straight losses . . . Fredy Montero deftly avoids a Vancouver defender in order to create an open shot, and then curls the ball inside the far post in the 90th minute, enabling the Sounders, playing in front of about 1,000 fans from Seattle and 20,000 Canadians in renovated BC Place, to tie the Whitecaps at 2 in the first of six Cascadia Cup matches . . . Junior Chris Williams eagles the 18th hole to earn medalist honors and the Washington Huskies hold off Texas to take the team title at the NCAA Southwest Regional Golf Championships in Norman, OK.
- FRIDAY, May 18 — No. 5 starter Kevin Millwood throws a no-hitter for 5.2 innings and blanks Colorado 4-0 with a two-hit, complete-game shutout. “That’s an unbelievable effort right there,” says 3B Kyle Seager. “He laid it all out there. That’s pretty special to see a guy giving it all like that. That motivates you as a team when you’ve got Millwood out there, he’s diving after bunts in the ninth inning. That’s unbelievable. That speaks a lot about him and his competitiveness and his leadership.” . . . The Seattle Storm (0-1) roar out to an 11-point lead, increase it to 21, and then gag it away with a horrendous fourth quarter and lose to the Los Angeles Sparks 72-66 in the WNBA season opener at KeyArena. The Storm shoots 28.6 percent in the final period and gives up 12 points on seven turnovers.
- THURSDAY, May 17— The Mariners take a 4-0 lead into the bottom of the seventh, but are forced into extra innings when former Mariner Jose Lopez smacks a three-run homer off Steve Delabar. In the bottom of the 11th, Brandon League loads ’em up and Carlos Santana delivers a walk-off single against a Seattle team that went 2-for-18 with runners in scoring position, stranded 11 men and whiffed 14 times. “We gave them that game,” manager Erik Wedge complains. “We had a 4-1 lead. Walks killed us early when we went to the bullpen and walks killed us late. This team is going to have to understand, when you’re in a position to win ballgames, you’ve got to finish off and win ballgames.”
- WEDNESDAY, May 16 — City of Seattle, King County and investor Chris Hansen agree on a memorandum of understanding laying out financial responsibilities for proposed basketball/hockey venue. The proposal includes two changes from the original unveiled in February. The agreement says construction could begin with only an NBA franchise on board. The plan calls for $290 million in private investment from Hansens group ,with public support capped at $120 million if its only the NBA. It would be $200 million if NBA and NHL franchises are involved . . . The Mariners suck air again, losing to the Cleveland Indians 9-3. Felix Hernandez gives up eight runs, six earned, in 3.2 innings.
- TUESDAY, May 15 — Mariners eke out four hits off Josh Beckett, booed off the mound in his previous start, and are blanked by the Red Sox 5-0, the team’s fifth shutout loss. Manager Eric Wedge elects to sit SS Brendan Ryan, 0-for-15 and batting .140 . . . The UW women’s rowing program, headed by Bob Ernst, is selected to participate in the NCAA Championships for the 16th consecutive year, making UW just one of four schools to make the championship field every year since the race’s inception in 1997.
- MONDAY, May 14 — Dustin Ackley, with a single, extends his hitting streak to 10 games, but Tacoma native Jon Lester baffles the rest of the Mariners in a 6-1 Red Sox victory at Fenway Park. Lester throws a complete game with six strikeouts and no walks, a performance aided by Seattle’s 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position . . . Paul Wulff, fired by Washington State after a four-year stint that produced a 9-40 record, will join the 49ers as an assistant.
TOP 5 NUMBERS
10: Consecutive games played by the Mariners without an error between May 5-15, the second-longest streak in club history (11, Aug. 19-23, 1993).
On the 10-game road trip that ended Sunday, the Mariners went 14-for-67 (.209) with runners in scoring position.
In Wednesday’s 9-3 Cleveland win over Seattle, three former M’s, Shin-Soo Choo (2), Asdrubal Cabrera (2) and Jose Lopez (1) combined for six hits.
30-10: Margin by which the Sparks outscored the Seattle Storm in the fourth quarter Friday en route to a 72-66 win in the WNBA opener.
10: Games the Sounders played this season before they allowed multiple goals in a match — two at Vancouver Saturday.
READS OF THE WEEK
Mariners At The Quarter Pole: What’s Your Take?: The Mariners have reached the quarter pole of the 2012 season. But before we get to that, lets rewind to Feb. 10, when the first wave of pitchers and catchers trickled into spring training in Peoria. With four months to heal his wounds from a 95-loss, 2011 season, manager Eric Wedge came off the acme of upbeat . . . MORE
Can Flood Of Suits By Former Players Kill NFL?: A few days ago, Art Monk, the Hall of Fame wide receiver who played 14 seasons for the Washington Redskins, filed suit against the National Football League and helmet manufacturer Riddell, Inc., alleging short term memory loss, headaches and speech difficulties stemming from multiple concussions he sustained during his career . . . MORE
Thiel: Arena Easier On Taxpayer, Harder On SoDo: In a feat equal to a dunk by Danny DeVito, I will attempt to explain briefly the proposed arena deal, without using financier-ese or bureaucrat-ese, and in the process offer something perhaps you didnt know . . . MORE
Thiel: Be Careful What You Say, Eric Wedge: After the Mariners began the season 4-4, it was written here that, other than the guy who is the agent for disgraced Arkansas football coach Bobby Petrino, Eric Wedge has for the next six months the toughest job in sports . . . MORE
Wayback Machine: Tealey Raymond’s Baseball Life: Based on a blurb that appeared in the Feb. 28, 1908 evening edition of The Seattle Times, its baseball reporter, who went unidentified (no bylines in that era), found intriguing the prospect of Dan Dugdales Siwashes coming to terms with 26-year-old shortstop Frank Tealey Raymond . . . MORE
That Was The Week That Was (May 7-13): The Mariners touched down into last place in the AL West, thanks in part to a pair of eye gouges delivered courtesy former left fielder Raul Ibanez, and the Sounders saw their five-match winning streak end in front of the seasons largest crowd at CenturyLink Field. On top of that, John Jaso reminded us for one day of one of the more colorful antiques in franchise history, Bob Scrap Iron Stinson . . . MORE
- “Driving in runs, hitting at key points in time, particularly late in a ball game. He’s the one veteran guy that we can consistently have in the lineup that we need to produce for us”– Eric Wedge, Mariners manager, on what he wants to see out of Ichiro, batting .206 with runners in scoring position (as of Monday)
- “We still had some poor ABs from a few guys and we’ve got to do a better job than that. But I think we’ve got four or five guys heading in the right direction. What we’ve got to do is get the other four or five heading in the right direction along with them” — Eric Wedge, Mariners manager, after a 5-0 loss to the Boston Red Sox Tuesday
- “It’s good for the city, it protects taxpayers and it includes protections that the team will stay here. That’s my objective as an owner” — Chris Hansen, San Francisco hedge fund manager, after city and county officials agreed to a proposed deal about a basketball/hockey arena Wednesday
- “We had some chances to kind of blow it open there. We’re just kind of scratching one out. We needed to get a four- or five-run inning, get ahead. Be up by four or five early and just step on their throat. We’re just not putting games away. It just gets old being a young team and having growing pains and all that stuff. At some point we’ve got to figure it out and figure out how to close a game out” — Brendan Ryan, Mariners shortstop, after the team blew a 4-0 lead in the seventh inning en route to a 5-4 loss in 11 innings Thursday
- “It doesn’t matter where you pitch. If you make good pitches, you can get people out. The most important thing was for this team to get a win” — Kevin Millwood, Mariners No. 5 starter, after throwing a 4-0, complete-game shutout over Colorado Friday
- “I could imagine hitting against him tonight and it would have been mind-boggling. I would have been swimming in my own brain about what to look for” — John Jaso, Mariners catcher, after Millwood’s two-hitter in Colorado
- “It was a terrible game for us. One quarter, and that’s all it takes in this league” — Sue Bird, Storm guard, after Seattle blew a 21-point lead and lost 72-66 to the Los Angeles Sparks Friday
- “It’s always good to have goals in these kinds of games. I’m really happy about that” — Fredy Montero, after scoring in the 90th minute Saturday, giving the Sounders a 2-2 tie with Vancouver