Author: Art Thiel

Never having met a metaphor he could not twist beyond recognition, Art has been illuminating, agitating, amusing and annoying Puget Sound sports readers for a long time. Along with Steve Rudman, he co-founded Sports Press Northwest because it didn’t seem right that the Google monster should aggregate daily journalism into oblivion without at least a flesh wound from somebody. Thiel and Rudman labored under the Seattle Post-Intelligencer globe until the print edition died an undeserved death in March, 2009. Art continued on at its online successor seattlepi.com while working on SPNW’s creation. His radio commentaries can be heard Friday and Saturday mornings and Friday afternoon on KPLU-FM 88.9. In 2003 he wrote the definitive book about the Seattle Mariners, “Out of Left Field,” which became a regional bestseller. In 2009, along with Rudman and KJR 950 afternoon host Mike Gastineau, Thiel authored “The Great Book of Seattle Sports Lists,” a cross between historylink.org and Mad Magazine that has become mandatory reading for any sports fan who has an indoor bathroom. A graduate of Pacific Lutheran University as well as two dead papers and a live one, the News Tribune of Tacoma, he has become a fan of entrepreneurial online journalism because it allows him to continue a lifelong passion to take the English language to places it rarely visits willingly, and does not involve the cleaning of kennels or stables.

Mariners majority owner John Stanton is flanked by MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred and Mariners president of business operations Catie Griggs Thursday at the Space Needle for the announcement that Seattle has been awarded the 2023 All-Star Week. / Alan Chitlik, Sportspress Northwest The Seattle bid had been in MLB’s hands for a few years. The target date varied from 2024 to 2027. But when the commissioner’s office called in early spring inquiring whether the city could be ready to host All-Star Week 2023, the Mariners front office hit hyper-drive. “We had to put all the pieces of the puzzle to…

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After a year’s hiatus, the audio riot returns to Seahawks games. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest Typically the previous game reveals much about the opponent’s status for the pending game. What Pete Carroll saw in the Tennessee Titans film from Sunday was borderline scary. Not the Titans. The division-rival Arizona Cardinals. “I was really attracted by Arizona’s play — they were spectacular,” the Seahawks coach said Wednesday of the Cardinals’ 38-13 win in Nashville. “On offense, they were all over the place, and did a million different things. Defensively, they created so many big plays right from the beginning. It…

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Part of the large Mariners entourage for the 2001 All-Star Game in Seattle included, from left, manager Lou Piniella, 2B Bret Boone, RF Ichiro, DH Edgar Martinez, 1B John Olerud and RHP Freddy Garcia. / Alan Chitlik, Sportspress Northwest Among long-time Mariners fans, news Tuesday of the return of MLB’s All-Star Game to Seattle, this one for 2023, evokes some grand memories about what might be called the pinnacle non-Griffey episode in franchise history. The Seattle All-Star Game in 2001 was a rollicking salute to a bad franchise gone good. For those new to town, the game featured eight Mariners…

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RB Richard Newton is Washington’s leading rusher after two games with 97 yards in 29 attempts. / Drew Sellers, Sportspress Northwest As a hitter, Lou Piniella’s temper regarding pitchers was so short, some wondered if he should be trusted near one with a wood club in his hands. As a manager of Mariners pitchers, he had to become a bit more tolerant. He learned he shouldn’t fire them on the spot for a walk. After watching a relief pitcher walk two batters in a row, a steamy, yet more controlled, Piniella had seen enough. As he stepped onto the mound,…

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DE Rasheem Green, who may have had his best pro game, lays a hit on Colts QB Carson Wentz. / Rod Mar, Seattle Seahawks Eight months of alteration came together in an exultation. “We want to keep the defense guessing,” said an exuberant Russell Wilson. “We want to constantly have them question: Who’s getting the ball? Where’s it going? What are they doing? We were able to do that. “You can kind of smell the blood in the water.” On the road Sunday against a crowd of hostiles indoors and an 11-5 Indianapolis playoff team a year ago with an…

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DB Brendan Radley-Hiles and coach Jimmy Lake confer on the sidelines at Michigan Stadium Saturday. / UW Athletics After the debacle at home against BCS Montana, there was little surprise that the Washington Huskies wilted Saturday on the road on national TV, in front of 108,345 loons waving yellow pompoms at Michigan Stadium. So the 31-10 pounding (box) at the hands of the Michigan Wolverines was expected. The way it happened was a little breathtaking: The Huskies were dominated on both sides of the scrimmage line.

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If as advertised, the Seahawks have a better line and a better plan, Russell Wilson won’t feel as compelled to do too much by himself. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest Much of the wailings and lamentations that followed from Russell Wilson’s complaints in February about the shortcomings of the Seahawks offense were based on the awareness of his age. As if 33 somehow thrust him to the edge of sudden career extinction, akin to the Permian-Jurassic “Great Dying” 250 million years ago. That seemed to add urgency to the need for upgrades right away, so as to not squander his…

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LT Duane Brown and QB Russell Wilson have hugged it out. / Art Thiel, Sportspress Northwest Duane Brown is the sort of athlete upon which every pro sports franchise should be built. The least of his virtues is that he has the arms to carry one. Savvy. Cool. Formidable. Like Denzel Washington in The Magnificent Seven. So it was not surprising to learn Wednesday that after Russell Wilson rocked the world of Seattle sports in February with public complaints about his unhappiness with the Seahawks, including the pass protection, a called was placed. “He reached out to me,” Brown said,…

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Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has been an outspoken advocate for vaccination protocols. / Rod Mar, Seattle Seahawks Within the same hour Tuesday morning, the Seahawks, Sounders and Kraken all announced the same thing: Their fans must be vaccinated and masked at their games and facility events, or stay home and watch on TV. Shortly thereafter, University of Washington football announced a similar tightened policy at Husky Stadium with the season’s third home game against Cal Sept. 25. Washington State football said its identical policy will begin for home games in October.

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Low on wide receivers, QB Dylan Morris went after sophomore backup TE Devin Culp for a short gain. Saturday against Montana. / Drew Sellers, Sportspress Northwest Here in the college football tomb that the state of Washington has become, my imagination conjures Jimmy Lake and Nick Rolovich each having the Indiana Jones role of out-running the giant round rock bearing down from behind. Not sure whether they’re fast enough, but I’m loading up on popcorn and eager to find out how this movie ends. It’s safe to say that never have the state’s premier programs started so perilously, simultaneously. On…

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