Mariners fans vent on the Mariners' disastrous 2010 season in prose, poetry, song and more.

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Earlier this week we asked Mariners fans to vent their anger and frustration over a disastrous 2010 season. Readers quickly responded to “Swing Away, M’s fans” by offering more than 100 responses.

Fans from as far away as Honolulu and Taiwan took their cuts in a variety of ways. Some wrote poems. One wrote a song. Others stuck to prose. Haikus were popular, and one fan pounded out eight in a few hours. Former KING-5 weatherman Bob Cram, known for sketching cartoons about the weather on air, drew up his frustration — a Mariners hitter with a branch for a bat as he tried to hit a pea-sized ball.

There were plenty of jokes with Mariners punch lines. One fan offered a Top 10 list worthy of David Letterman. A few fans offered new marketing slogans, and one even came up with an ad to slap on the side of Metro buses. Two readers suggested the Mariners change their team name.

Here are the best of the bunch.


Why should fans pay?

If the ownership is not willing to open up its pocketbook and do whatever it can to win a championship, why should the fans open up their pocketbooks to come to see a lousy game?

— Bob Chin, Seattle

Lincoln and Armstrong failures

The common denominator for failure through the years is Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong. They do the hiring and firing and impose handcuffs on those they do, assuming (correctly for the most part) that the public will continue to support the team financially while directing anger at anyone but them. Nice work if you can get it.

— Bruce Peto, Poulsbo

How about a Fans Day?

My idea to vent my frustration would be a collective boycott of an M’s game. It would be called “Fans Day.”

Frustrated fans coordinated together to boycott a game and show the collective result in ticket sales of that particular game.

Not showing up is the best way to make an impact, but doing it at one selected game would make a clear and undeniable statement as to the power of this gesture — much better than an aggregate boycott spread out over the course of a season

This could be done once a year to let both players and owners know just who are paying the ridiculous salaries.

Fans Day would require the help of the media to get the word out and coordinate such an effort, but I think it’s possible and probably the most effective way to voice the disappointment of the fans.

— Kevin D. Cowden, Seattle

Balance isn’t there

A lesson that can be learned from this failure of a Mariners season is that a team that is not evenly balanced among pitching, defense and offense probably won’t succeed. Hindsight is always better than foresight, but what has happened was predicted by some experts. If you strictly concentrate on one discipline or maybe two, and one goes sour, you will be at a distinct disadvantage because opponents can focus their attack on those weaknesses, thereby neutralizing your intentionally limited strengths. So wait till next year!

— Mike Davis, Olympia

Sticking by Jack Z.

The season is over, but two months remain, Jack. I will see it through to the end. This hurts, it stings, it sucks. However, the Seattle Mariners are the one team I will pour my heart out for. I will cry like a baby the day the Mariners win the World Series. Tears of joy that will flow like the Snake River.

I believe in you, Jack. You can turn this around. We can be heroes.

— Chris Boyd, Bellevue

Loss of confidence

The GM said he “lost confidence” in Wakamatsu. Many of us have lost confidence in the GM, Armstrong and Lincoln. Can we get rid of them?

— Dale Walter, Renton

Consistent thread

The most consistent thread through 30 years of losses; lost players; players who come to Seattle and fail; second-rate has-been players; and the mess we had this week and this season is ownership. They’re the ones who hide behind closed doors and offer us bobbleheads, garlic fries and worn-out players. Lincoln and Armstrong owe it to Seattle to “let themselves go” and allow some new, more competent blood with a sense of integrity and accountability to take over.

Replacing manager after manager is the coward’s way out. The totally classless way Don Wakamatsu was treated; the sad, sad way Ken Griffey left Wakamatsu with a knife between his ribs; and the utter crap of Zduriencik saying “he’s the manager” six days before throwing him under the bus, have left me with no respect and no interest in what happens from here on out.

Wakamatsu’s firing capped the worst baseball I’ve ever seen — just no class. I’m more than disappointed, I’m disgusted. Acknowledge the disaster they helped create, and apologize if they ever hope I’m coming back to Safeco.

— Peter Vanderven, Seattle

Take the high road

Angry, no. Disappointed, very.

Disappointed by the fickleness of fans. By newspaper articles directed more at stirring things up (perhaps for the sake of selling papers) than at being helpfully supportive of local teams and team members. Disappointed by the immaturity of those who lash out at everyone but themselves, failing to recognize that every single one of us in his or her daily life must take personal responsibility for how things are right now.

Until every individual stands tall for his personal moral views, even under duress of losing his job for doing so, then the Mariners’ fiasco created by those who are left, who were too immature or weak to stand tall, will be a shining example of how self-centeredness and lack of personal responsibility contribute to the moral decay of the entire nation. It starts with you. Wakamatsu is mature. Ichiro is mature. Those who talk behind others’ backs, those who are disrespectful, those who put their egos first have a lot of growing up to do.

What I would like to see, instead, is fans, newspapers and all Mariners personnel beginning to treat and speak of Mariners team members and the manager as lovingly as they would speak to their own children. The point is that if you want someone to succeed, to feel good, to excel, to become a loving, caring and giving person, you do not smear them, either in public or in private, but, rather, you speak the best of them. Does this newspaper have any obligation whatsoever to refrain from publishing divisive and inflammatory stories/rumors? Whose morals are at work here?

— Norma Jenner, Seattle

Losing proposition

I grew up in Seattle, but moved away in 1975. I’ve been an M’s fan since the very beginning. I have a co-worker who is a Rockies fan. Our monthly bet is the best record between the Rocks and the M’s. I HAVE NOT WON A SINGLE MONTH! This is hurting my pride and my pocketbook!!!

— Mary Borders, Louisville, Ky.

Ballpark figures

2010 average (57 dates): 27,274

2009 average (57 dates): 27,939

Stop going to the ballpark!

— Jerry Brown, Fife

Problem at the top

The root of the problem is the long-term failure of the minor-league system and poor draft decisions, resulting in failing to produce enough major-league talent to be a contending team. This has been the case over a long period of time. The solution is to identify who has been involved in the decision-making for the past decade and replace them with competent baseball people.

As long as Chuck Armstrong and Howard Lincoln are involved in baseball decisions, the Mariners will never be successful. They have a proven track record. It is long past time to place the blame where it actually belongs. The fans are finally losing patience, which may produce a death spiral for baseball in Seattle.

— Russ von Hagen, Sunnyside

Mottos and slogans

Doesn’t believe it

New motto: I have seen it, I don’t believe it! Mariners baseball

— David Cullup, Bellingham

Don’t step in it

My colleague just suggested a new name: the Manures. If you say it fast enough, you can barely tell the difference. Sad.

Overheard from a listener on KJR earlier this season: “The 2010 Mariners, where every night is singles night.”

— Peter Vanderven, Seattle

Three new slogans

“Your 2010 Seattle Mariners: Our Hitting Is Offensive!”

“Your 2010 Seattle Mariners: Refuse to Score!”

“Your 2010 Seattle Mariners: You Can See the Mendoza Line from Here!”

“Your 2010 Seattle Mariners: We Leave More Men on Base than the U.S. Army!”

— Neal Starkman, Seattle

Punch lines and jokes

Another bottom feeder

Puget Sound is one of the best places in the world for crab, shrimp, halibut and other bottom feeders. It is only natural one of our teams would be a bottom feeder, never really trying to find the best combinations and pay them.

— LeRoy Spitzer, Bremerton

Going off a Cliff

If I were to dismantle the Mariners and could only keep one player, it would be Cliff Lee. Oops. Too late!

— Dennis Widman, Tucson, Ariz.

Mariners’ Top 10 list

Top 10 clubhouse comments:

10) Is that a rat tail or a mullet?

9) Did you hear Byrnes is on the cover of Surf magazine and Golf Digest?

8) Is Ichiro leading the seventh-inning stretch?

7) Hey mate, maybe I will take the hyphen out of my name to pitch better?

6) Collect call from Mr. Griffey in Montana. Will you accept the charges?

5) Can Cliff get me a discount on an RV?

4) Holy Smoak! I went from first place to last!

3) Felix pitched a no-hitter and still lost?

2) Did you get wind Silva is the spokesperson for Weight Watchers?

1) Hey, Mike, will you throw us some free rally fries for our season bonus?

— Teaessa Chism and Scott Okino

Hopes for 2011

Here’s what I hope for next season:

More players named Wilson who can field but can’t hit.

Corner the market on bad-backed DH/first basemen.

More positive influences like Bradley and Figgins.

More catchers who can’t hit.

More left-handed pitchers who can’t pitch (see Bedard, Erik and Rowland-Smith, Ryan).

Inside the mind of Jack Z., I think there is room for a sublet.

— Tim Carlson, Victoria, B.C.

Wak the walk

With all the early talk about The Mariner Way, I had very high hopes that we’d finally have a disciplined ballclub. I guess he could talk the talk, but not Wakamatsu the walk.

— Ron Jelaco, Montreal

Break out the HGH

The M’s are so bad, and their offense so anemic and punchless, it actually makes me yearn for the steroid era. Seriously. “My oh my! Break out the HGH and androgen cream!”

— Jack Stein IV, Seattle

Rename game

Too many men left on base? Rename the team the Seattle Marooners.

— James Melton, Lake Stevens

M’s wake-up call

The games are so boring to watch that Griffey fell asleep off the field during a game, while others were sleepwalking through the games. It’s the coach’s job to inspire the team to play. That’s a difficult task when the snoring is louder than the words.

— Duane Petersen, Fircrest

Wanting a triple play

The one triple play the Mariners didn’t execute was getting rid of Lincoln and Armstrong along with Wakamatsu.

— Gordy Green

Warning label

The follow warning should be required for all Mariners broadcasts:

This broadcast contains the 2010 Mariners offense, which may cause drowsiness. Use caution while driving or operating machinery.

— Gregg Dolin, Kennewick

Their own network

The Mariners are creating their own TV channel. It will be called the MES network.

— Steve Thomsen, Waterville

Mariners hydroplane

It seems the poor Mariners are getting beat up in the media for their handling of the Wakamatsu firing. As I was thinking of possible scenarios to repair this damage, I stumbled upon the perfect solution — a hydroplane!

Think about it, it can be painted with the team colors. On the right sponson, a large portrait of Howard Lincoln, and on the left, Chuck Armstrong.

The perfect name just came to me — Miss Management!

— Jeffrey Sherrill, Seattle


Men on base! But wait.

Runners stranded yet again

How to lose a fan.

— F. David Hale, Tempe, Ariz.

Mariners baseball

Lessons in futility

An oxymoron

— Chip Martin, Seattle

Trying to play hard

But hitting is not their strength

Alas, swept again.

— Michelle Brat, Seattle

Two thousand and ten thus far

Don Wakamatsu

had high hopes for this season

going into it

Pitching was superb,

the team seemed to want to win.

Contenders maybe?

Dark clouds and rough seas

made things much more difficult

for these Mariners

Eric Byrnes rode off.

Ken Griffey Junior dozed off.

Fans became teed off

They cried for some change.

They cried out for some relief

and better hitting

Cliff Lee was traded

for some high-touted prospects

that soon got sent down

Jack Z said to wait

that rebuilding takes some time.

“Give us two more years.”

The real blame though lies

with people like Chuck Armstrong

and Howard Lincoln.

— K.A. Erickson


When I used to have a horrendous day,

I could look forward to watching the Mariners play.

Two outs, So What!; was the battle cry,

Today three on base, no outs, but the team just dies.

Oh, the players, I knew all your names,

But now the roster seems to change each game.

Tickets to a homestand was a wonderful gift,

now I’d just as soon jump off a cliff!

— David Irving, Edmonds

The Mariners suck

No doubt about that

A terrible year

Both glove and bat

Started with good intentions

Z’s plan of attack

Get back to baseball

A positive plan that

But as often happens

Theory and reality met

With the M’s caught in the middle

Along with my go-all-the-way Vegas bet

— Chuck Snow, Las Vegas

Hopes were high at the end of O-nine

This year’s team would be so divine

But few wins and more losses

from Mariners bosses

told Wak this is the end of the line

— Charles Brondos, Spokane

Oh, woe, this season

Of angst and strife.

These M’s of ours

Have sucked our life.

We curse the players.

We hate on Wak.

We question Z

We talk and talk.

Yet here is why

It’s all so wrong:

The guy in charge

Is Chuck Armstrong!

— John Smistad, Olympia

Yearning for the past

We really haven’t asked for much

Another bat or two

Well sure, there’s always Ichiro

But singles hitters just won’t do

The days of A-Rod came and went

Raul and Moyer, too

Now two of them have Series rings

Oh, tell me this just isn’t true!

Ibanez isn’t there just yet

But he’s been to the show

Perhaps a change in management

And it could be our time to go!

With names like Branyan, Bard and Smoak

There’s never any hitting

I look the roster up and down

What the #@!$? You must be kidding!

It’s been forever since we cheered

For Edgar, Boone and Buhner

The wait takes such a toll on me

Oh, how I wish it could be sooner

Can’t we once again hooray!

With something on the line?

It’s clearly just impossible

When more than 20 games behind

The house that Griffey built?

Perhaps there’s more than meets the eye

Because he’s up and left us too

Before we had a fair goodbye

And just to salt our painful wounds

We’re now without Cliff Lee

The Rangers are a lock to win

Don’t believe it? Wait and see!

Oh, Felix, we feel bad for you

You’re angry, I can tell

We’d really love to see you win

So I suggest you leave as well.

— Eric Wexler, Redmond

Season 2010

The Mariners live in a big green house

With some hitters who had numbers

That wouldn’t scare a mouse

They swing at pitches high and tight

They swing and swing with all their might

Sometimes they try a little bunt,

Sometimes they stand and stare

But no matter what the pitch is

The baseball isn’t there

The Z man had a plan

Where they all had banner years

They’d move the runners one by one

And all the fans would cheer

Felix first and then Cliff Lee,

Opponents tearing out their hair

If only when M’s would swing

The baseball would be there

Guti can climb the highest wall

And Ichiro’s skills are plenty

But the Z Man’s plans are down the drain

You couldn’t get a penny

For the bats are flat, and now it’s plain

The victories aren’t many

‘Cause when they try a little bunt

Or when they stand and stare

no matter what the pitch is

The baseball isn’t there

— Grant Mitchell, Bothell

Saddest words

These were the saddest of possible words:

Tinker to Evers to Chance.

That’s until the 2010 Mariners,

Stinkers and Never-a-Chance

The horrible play began long ago

when Lincoln was heard to say

Build it and they’ll come,

Spend their money and some,

And we’ll trust marketing to save the day

Armstrong said OK to the ruse,

And marketing sold us Griffey past use;

Their research told them we’d buy a story,

So Jack Z arrived as the wizard of glory

And Jack Z brought in a capable chap,

To manage the team (and take all the crap).

Problem was, Wak was not a believer,

In the marketing spin that was supposed to deliver

He knew the DH’s were old and decrepit,

And the whole team too slow to make it to second,

That’s if they ever swung and made contact,

One item sure missing in everyone’s contract

So after the players ran out of excuses,

Wak took the fall to protect the 3 stooges.

Lincoln to Armstrong to Zduriencik’s still here,

While marketing spins over another bad year.

Someone PLEASE buy the Mariners!

— Jon Fritzber

There once was a team

There once was a team from Seattle

Who after each loss would prattle

“We might not have won,

and it wasn’t much fun,

but we’ll swear up and down that we battled!”

— Andy Sherrill, Bellevue

A work of pure fiction

If only Junior was 19 years old again

If only Danny Wilson was behind the plate again

If only Lou Piniella was back in the leadership role again

If only the best of Bret Boone was playing 2nd base again

If only Randy Johnson had not retired

If only Edgar’s knees were made of kryptonite

If only John Olerud was wearing his hard hat on 1st base again

If only Carlos Guillen was the shortstop

If only Jay Buhner was in left field again

If only Pat Gillick would come home again

If only Felix would grow up and decide to always throw his best without pouting

If only Lopez would get his bat back from last year

If only Chone Figgins was still an Angel

If only Ichiro would stop providing cryptic messages to the media

If only some players could hit with consistency

If only it was an errorless land

If only the lineup included players who had averages above .275

If only the fans would remain loyal one more year —

If only, if only, if only …

The truth is, If Only Land is pure fiction and the manager and GM need to find the right people for next year or they can join the ranks of the if-only people.

— Marilyn Seger, Camas


The Mariners Lament

(Sung to the chorus of “A Dying Cubs Fan … by Steve Goodman)

Oh, we now play the blues in Seattle

Now that baseball seasons winding down

With the roof tightly closed

The fan still get hosed

In their convertible burial ground

For many a years

They all heard our cheers

But now we just barely survive

I guess we’ll hope for next year

because its perfectly clear

we’re gonna lose the next four out of five

— John Elwood, Federal Way