Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Mariners Phony Rightwing Family Values Image Keeps Them From Winning

One thing really bugs me about the Seattle Mariners. It’s not the bad trades; bad draft choices, signing of washed up free agents, lack luster starting pitching, bullpen meltdowns, non-production of slugger Richie Sexson or retaining ineffective general managers.

It’s the phony rightwing family values image promoted by Mariner management that permeate every decision and move the club makes.

The annoying happy talk pre game code of conduct announcement you hear when you entering the ballpark is indicative of the problem.

“The Seattle Mariners are committed to creating a safe, comfortable and enjoyable experience for our guests at Safeco Field. Our staff will proactively intervene to support an environment where guests can enjoy the Safeco Field experience free from unacceptable behavior, including the following:

  • Foul/abusive language or obscene gestures
  • Intoxication or other signs of impairment related to alcohol consumption
  • Displays of affection not appropriate in a public, family setting
  • Obscene or indecent clothing
  • Any disruption of the game or event, including throwing of objects or trespassing on the playing field or in restricted areas
  • Sitting in a location other than the guest's ticketed seat
  • Fighting, taunting, or making threatening remarks or gestures

Any guest not adhering to the above code or behaving in an unruly manner will be removed from the ballpark. The Seattle Mariners and Safeco Field management reserve the right to determine what is unruly or unacceptable behavior, warranting removal

If anyone is interfering with your enjoyment of our facility, please contact the nearest Safeco Field Host for assistance”

We own the ballpark not you! So get over the mind control tactics and phony family values flag waiving crap you subjected everyone to when we go to OUR ballpark. Remember this is a park we built mostly with taxpayer money and rented to the Mariners at sweetheart rates.

If your like me you’ll say who the hell are you to tell me I can’t kiss my significant other in public and who made you the judge of obscene or indecent clothing and who gave you the right to determine just what constitutes unruly and unacceptable conduct. People are capable of policing their own behavior thank you.

The most well known enforcement of these rules is when the Mariners refused to allow fans wearing a “Yankees Suck” tee shirt into the park in May of 2002. A ban that was later removed after a backlash from the likes of the ACLU and season ticket holders who felt that that Mariner management was infringing on everyone’s first amendment rights. At the time M’s management said the word suck “was offensive and had no place in a family atmosphere”. Really! This is the same type of self-righteous crap that helps create sexually suppressed types who feel the need to seek anonymous sex in public restrooms.

No I’m not saying that anything should go at the ballpark.

But I don’t need the thought police telling me how to act or that I can’t yell “hey you suck” at the player of my choice if I feel like it. That type of behavior is part and parcel of normal baseball fan behavior from the beginning of time. Except maybe in stodgy overly PC Seattle.

What surprises me is most of the attendees at the park go along with it like the bunch of no nothing johnny come lately Seattle baseball fans that they are. They’re more interested, most of the time. in getting the god dam wave started then paying attention to what’s happen on the field of play.

I’m convinced it's because they really go to the games to be seen, eat garlic fries or those nauseating shishkaberries and NOT actually watch the game. Something that's hard to do when some yahoo is doing the wave with the bases loaded and the batter facing the pitch of decision. If they were truthful they’d admit they find the game itself quite boring but it's real fun to do the distracting wave to keep their peabrains occupied. Try doing the wave at Fenway Park in Boston or Wrigley Field in Chicago because someone may hit you up side the head.

Go to a football game for Christ sake to do that shit. The wave does not belong in baseball period.

But I regress.

The flag waiving and feel goodliness family values atmosphere goes on unrestricted at Safeco whenever possible. I’m convinced it led to the eventual demises of the most successful manager in M’s history Lou Piniella. I should also add the demise of general manager Pat Gillick here too. No matter what was said in the MSM at the time. Piniella’s fiery personality and on field antics were looked upon unfavorably by Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong and the rest of the powers to be in Mariner Management. This is of course the same Sweet Lou who just led the lowly Chicago Cubs to the central division pennant. Gillick is the GM of the Philadelphia Phillies who just won the National League East title.

It’s not hard to see the hand of the family values types running this ball club behind all this. Eagle scoutmaster Howard Lincoln, chief operating officer of the team, apparently carried his rightwing family values agenda into adulthood. Now he is trying to indoctrinate all of the rest of us.

Like most of us I’m a long-suffering Seattle Baseball fan. In 1995 the ball club finally made it to the post season after years of losing. Much of the success of the 95 season was due to the aligning of the baseball planets and not anything that Mariner Management really had done up to that time except for the hiring of Lou Piniella to manage the baseball team. It’s pretty much a given that Seattle wouldn’t have a major league baseball franchise today had it not finally made the playoffs in 1995. The team suddenly became the toast of the town which created a political climate that favored approval of funding for a new stadium. This took two elections in the fall of 1995 (the first election rejected the stadium proposal before it was resubmitted to voters and finally approved) to get the voters to agree to fund a baseball park for the M’s to play. During this time the M’s also build up their fan base that has pretty much guaranteed the financial success of the team every since.

After 1995 the M’s continued to be competitive and under Piniella, appearing in the playoffs in 97, 2000, and 2001. The M’s won 93 games in 02 but missed the playoffs. Piniella was fired and the end of the 02 season. The Bob Melvin era began and the team missed the playoffs in 03 even though they again won 93 games. The slide continued until this year when it appeared the club would make the post season until it's end of season collapse. In spite of this Mariner management decided to stand pat and retain unproductive GM Bill Bavasi and rookie manager John McLaren for another year.

Even though M's management says they want to win a world series their actions would indicate otherwise. I think they are more interested in ticket sales (which remain good) then winning. Until Mariners fans realize this and start not going to the park or at least make some display of objecting there is little reason for M's management to change things.

Also I think most of the more colorful and talented people in baseball are not acceptable to Mariner management because their not the YES men goodie-goodie types that fit the family values M's philosophy and agenda. This restricts them from hiring controversial baseball people. Many of whom are just the people in the game that are also the most talented and ultimately could be better at fielding a winning team.

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