Mariners: Ichiro pitching? Not in Jack Zduriencik’s world. The Mariners general manager quickly put an end to any rumor of Ichiro on the mound, briefly stating yesterday that Ichiro “isn’t going to pitch.” Period.
Zduriencik issued his statement in response to a 56-pitch bullpen session that the Mariner outfielder and leadoff man tossed over the weekend. The showcase took place in Japan, with Ichiro in preparation for the 2009 World Baseball Classic.
Of course, most hardcore baseball fans probably support Zduriencik’s purist outlook towards the game, but not me. The Mariners are going to suck this year, and I’d be willing to buy a ticket I otherwise wouldn’t to see Ichiro pitch. No one can say they didn’t enjoy backup catcher Jamie Burke’s late-inning relief appearance last season, and seeing Ichiro on the hill would be just as awesome. Geez, lighten up Jack, have some fun.
Huskies: Big news out of Montlake yesterday. Mark February 10, 2009 on your calendars as the day a new regime began at the University of Washington. A new mascot regime, that is. “Dubs” was unveiled as the new name of the Dawgs’ newest mascot, a three-month old Alaskan Malamute that will assume his duties at the start of the ’09 football season.
Dubs takes over for Spirit, the previous mascot who was scheduled to be retired after the ’08 season, but was forced into an early departure after an injury last summer.
Sounders FC: Good news, local soccer fans. The Sounders FC are 2-0 in exhibition play after knocking off Chinese club Shandong Luneng by a score of 2-0 yesterday. Both goals came courtesy midfielder Sanna Nyassai.
The Sounders FC previously beat the Los Angeles Galaxy on Monday, 3-1, playing in the first game of any kind in their brief history.
Don’t get too excited just yet, however. Keep in mind, the 2008 Detroit Lions compiled a 4-0 preseason record before embarking on an epic 0-16 regular season.
Ichiro photo courtesy Nikkan Sports; Dubs photo courtesy Cliff Despeaux