A journal post about how this Mariners fan is attempting to move on from the latest scandal and subsequent shit show from a team I can’t stop loving.
I’d love to tell you guys that I came really close to breaking up with the Seattle Mariners yesterday. I’d love to pretend that I was willing to stop going to games and ignore the hometown nine for an extended period of time. But like a Kevin Mather apology, that would be disingenuous. A lie, constructed to make me look like a better person than I might be, and to try and save my own skin. The truth is, even as the franchise I love continued to embarrass itself every minute of the day, the thought never really crossed my mind.
You can’t choose who to love and the heart wants what it wants. If you can, perhaps you’re a better person than I. Now don’t misinterpret what I’m saying as any kind of a stamp of approval. What has happened over the past 36 hours has stained the organization even further and has alienated fans even further when it is on the cusp of turning this shit show around.
Call it a blind allegiance. Call it a blind spot. Call it whatever you want. But I’m with this franchise to the end of the line and it has nothing to do with who owns the team. The Seattle Mariners, its players, fans, scouts, front offices, and coaches, have never had an ownership group we deserve. It still doesn’t today, nor will it any time in the future. And even in the strongest of relationships, battles will be had and fights will be won and lost. Yesterday, the team took a small step towards the kind of business executives we deserve. It’s a small victory, but one worth celebrating before we charge off into our next battle.
Might it be easier to ignore the team in moments like this? To try a sort of trial separation, see other teams, and then decide whether or not to make this work? Perhaps it would and I wouldn’t blame anybody who took that route. But that’s never been who I am. When the franchise screws up, I’ll always be there to poke it with a giant stick to demand they do better. It is how I show my love.
Now, this isn’t meant to be some kind of rallying cry or a call to any fan to feel anything but what they’re already feeling. We all need to deal with this and heal our own ways. Some will be mad. Others will be sad. Some will try to quickly move on, and some don’t even care. Such is the way of life for a fandom.
But this organization has too many wonderful people in it for me to give up on it. From the players who took a stand against racial injustice and police brutality, who stand in line to vote before the sun has risen, who run foundations for serious diseases, who donate their time and money to serve purposes greater the game they play, I am in your corner.
To the baseball operations people who work tirelessly day after day to try and win and improve their team for a fanbase that is desperate for hope, I am in your corner. To managers and coaches who give their talents to other people so they can reach unimaginable heights, I am your ally.
To the ushers, vendors, sales staff, and marketing teams that work their asses off to provide the best experience possible to what has traditionally been a lousy product, you deserve a leader who is willing to treat you as vital members of the organization.
And to a fanbase that wants nothing more than to watch a good baseball team filled with good people become heroes to an entire region, I’m not leaving your corner. We deserve better and we must demand it. We have earned it. And I’m by your side until the end of the line.
So please, if you need time, take as much as you need. If you need to vent on social media, go right ahead. If you’ve reached your limits and are now hoping off the train, I wish you the best. And don’t worry, should the day ever come when you’re willing to embrace this team again, your seat will be saved.