What it’s like approaching the Mariners first-ever playoff run in my lifetime
I cannot remember a single Seattle Mariners playoff game. The last time they made the playoffs, I was two years old.
As a kid, all you understand is that we were not good. You don’t have the frustration of *almost* making the playoffs or being good and then getting bad. All you know is that every year they flash the standings up on the screen and we are either last or second to last. You say, “Oh well” and get ready for the next year.
Truthfully, the past 20 years of Mariners baseball have been BAD. We have had just 8 winning seasons in the past 20 years, and 6 times we finished below 70 wins. As a kid though, you don’t care because you just love watching baseball.
As I got older, I began to realize that the playoffs existed AND that my very own Seattle Mariners have been very good before! At this point was when the frustration set in and you realized we could be way better than we were.
I was right there in 2016 when we were ONE game away from making it back into the playoffs… that was heartbreaking. As a Mariners fan, you just believe that the team is cursed. The baseball gods simply don’t want Seattle to succeed, and that’s just how it is.
This year, something is different. Some things, like the roller coaster finish or making all the fans collectively have a heart attack with the way they’re finishing the year currently are the same. But something is different.
This team has a lot of extremely talented, fun, likable talent on their roster right now. Players like Julio Rodriguez, George Kirby, Logan Gilbert, and Cal Raleigh are all still very young and have impacted this team in a tremendous way.
Older, veteran players like Luis Castillo, Robbie Ray, and Eugenio Suarez are also going to be the centerpieces of this team for the foreseeable future. I cannot remember a time when the Mariners had this much young, controllable talent on their roster at one time.
I’ve never been one to have blind faith with the Seattle Mariners. They have definitely taught me otherwise. But one thing I know for certain is that this team is the best team they have assembled since the last time they went to the playoffs.
Right now they are limping and crawling closer and closer to a playoff spot every day, but that is not as important. The Seattle Mariners have built a team with the building blocks in place to be elite for a very, very long time.
As a long-time Mariners fan, I have been so hopeful over these past 5 years that their rebuild was going to be worth it. The prospect of tearing down their roster was scary, but now that we are sitting where we are, with a playoff spot in our sights and many more to come in the coming years, it all seems worth it.