April 15 would be less than taxing for the Seattle Mariners, scheduled for a day off after 10 games in three cities. The 4-6 M's beat Oakland 4-2 Wednesday with credible efforts from position players and another quality start from a member of the rotation.
A day of down time affords M's followers, as they await the Friday-night start of King Felix Hernandez against Detroit, a chance to scan box scores to see how past Seattle players are faring during this fledgling season.
Some of us start this process on opening day. For us, the high point of the season so far was a Sunday (April 11) game between Boston and Kansas City, when seven of the 23 position players who saw action were former M's. Add losing pitcher Gil Meche and you nearly had what was needed to fill out an entire starting team.
"Nearly" also applies to the nature of what could be called "Seattle players." One on the field that day was "David Arias," which was what M's agents called David Ortiz when they signed him out of a Dominican Republic high school. Ortiz would go on, of course, to be dubbed Big Papi as a Red Sox star. He never actually took the field for the Mariners.
Others who played in that Red Sox-Royals game: Adrian Beltre and Mike Cameron for Boston; Jose Guillen, Yuniesky Betancourt and Willie Bloomquist for K.C.
The seventh participant has become one of the best of the former M's. Scott Podsednik's career has gradually gotten more impressive since the 34-year-old outfielder left the M's after the 2002 season. A former all-star player, Podsednik was for many something of an unpronounceable household name after game two of the 2005 World Series, when he became the 14th series participant to hit a "walk-off" game-winning home run.
Yeah, but what's ex-Mariner Podsednik done lately?
Well, lately the one-time base-stealing threat is leading the American League with a .457 batting average.
But enough about the above past players. Friday's Detroit game brings the prospect of seeing yet again the hero of game three of the 2000 American League Division Series. He beat the White Sox with a squeeze bunt. Since 2004 Carlos Guillen has been a mainstay of the Tigers and, of course, a must-see box-score guy for those of us who keep our eyes on these things.