Let’s face it, these last few days have really sucked. The second best player on our team got suspended, then got hurt. Milton Bradley got ejected twice, in Spring Training. Doug Fister got nailed in the arm with a line drive. To be completely honest, I was slightly more excited about this season 5 days ago than I am right now. I know, I know, none of what’s happened is likely to significantly hurt our playoff chances, and there’s a realistic chance that Lee’s suspension will get reduced, his abdominal strain will heal up in a timely fashion, MLB umpires won’t have it out for Milton Bradley quite as much as Spring Training umpires seem to, and Doug Fister will be just fine. If all of those things (or even a couple of them) happen, that will just be fantastic, however, it’s impossible to deny that this series of occurrences has been a big downer.
So, yeah, I was feeling just a little bit depressed this morning (baseball-wise, any way). That is, until about 1pm, when Felix took the mound. It’s downright impossible to feel even the least bit unhappy when you’re watching Felix Hernandez do what he does oh so well. I know it’s only March, but he was really in top form today. The royal curve was dancing. He was hitting his spots with his fastball. Even Justin Upton couldn’t solve him. Oh yeah, he was good – five innings, 1 walk, 2 hits, no runs. In fact, looking at his line, I’m shocked that he only struck out two hitters – it seemed like every time I looked up someone in a red uniform was swinging at air.
This is a good team, with a solid chance of contending. It can be tempting to get down in the dumps after a week like this one, but whenever I start to head down that road, the fact that we have Felix Hernandez under club control for the next five years serves as a roadblock. Now, if things get really bad – say, Franklin Gutierrez breaks his leg or something, all bets are off. But for now, we’re still pretty fortunate to be in the situation that we’re in as fans.