Baseball Is A Marathon, Not A Sprint

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Starting January 10th I trained for the Paris Marathon. I ran for the French Red Cross, an organization that provides emergency medical care. It gave me a little extra motivation those mornings I’d rather sleep.

The Paris Marathon was last Sunday, April 6th. I ran in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, a test of my will. And every step in those 26.2 miles I was accompanied by my Seattle Mariners hat, representing a city I love and a team I am irrationally attached too.

But it’s not just any old Mariners hat– I got it signed by catcher Mike Zunino at his first public signing after being called up to the Mariners last season. It was at a Fred Meyer’s in Issaquah, and I stood in line for 45 minutes to get the hat and a ball signed by our future star.

The irony in it all, in the grind of a marathon and a baseball season, is that very next day Zunino broke the hamate bone in his wrist and missed over a month of baseball. That’s how it goes sometimes. But weathering the storm is just as important as embracing the sunshine.

When all was said and done I finished the Paris marathon in 3 hours, 57 minutes, and 47 seconds. I don’t know how that translates to baseball, but I know I had to battle through the last five miles to cross that finish line.

It gets hard, it will always get hard. But in running as in baseball, if you’re already fighting through the struggle and the pain why not fight a little harder and be rewarded for it?

The Mariners have started hot this season, posting a 5-3 record through their first 8 games. That’s less than 5% of the games to be played this season. That’s less than 2 miles in a marathon.

I’m not saying temper your expectations, I am simply saying that anything worth winning, worth achieving, won’t come easy. It’s a long season, and we can only hope these young Mariners can find the cadence and the fortitude to fight through these early injuries, fight through the growing pains, and come out victorious.

After the Seattle Seahawks won the Super Bowl, many die-hard Mariners fans started asking this simple question: why not us?

I echo that sentiment, because over 26.2 miles or 162 games, anything can happen.

And with success after a long season (or marathon), everyone deserves a champagne shower.