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Milton Bradley Not Getting Hint Wednesday, May 11, 2011

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According to Mariners skipper Eric Wedge, Milton Bradley has taken to following the Mariners around the country.  He missed the first two games of the three game series in Baltimore, but is expected to arrive tomorrow morning to catch the finale.

Stranger still is Bradley’s choice of transportation, taking the time to “pimp out” an old VW bus to follow around the team around the country.

When asked via cell phone the reason for his bizarre behavior, Bradley simply responded that he thought it would be “a groovy thing to do.”

The former left fielder’s actions have already created a large following with dozens of Mariners fans imitating his actions in traveling the country to support their team.  While a name hasn’t been agreed upon to describe the phenomenon, it’s already sporting comparisons to the Dead Heads.  A movement hasn’t quite begun in earnest just yet, but a large group of fans were spotted selling Frappuccinos and Cloverdale “Mariner” hot dogs outside Camden yards this evening to finance a trip to Ohio to see the Mariners play the Indians this weekend.

Milton Bradley's New Transportation

Michael Saunders Blames Neverending Prank For Batting Woes Thursday, May 5, 2011

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Photo courtesy zimbio.com

On the outside, Eric Wedge seems like a typical, no-nonsense manager on which baseball tradition has been founded.  His discussions with the media are meager when frustrated and to the quick when trying to induce change in his lineup.  But unknown to many outside of the Mariners’ clubhouse is a kiddish prankster gone awry.  Unfortunately, Michael Saunders is more familiar with the latter portrait of the first-time Mariners skipper.

“It started with the nickname,” Saunders explained in an exclusive interview Wednesday night after a 5-2 loss to Texas where Saunders struggled 0 for 3 with 2 strikeouts.

While he wouldn’t reveal it, we found out from other players that “Colonel Saunders” was the unfortunate pseudonym to which the young outfielder eluded.

“But soon, I was greeted by buckets of chicken in front of my locker before every batting practice,” Saunders continued. “I would find mashed potatoes in my batting helmet.  My socks were being seasoned with 11 original herbs and spices.  I couldn’t even concentrate without smelling chicken somewhere.”

Hitting Coach Chris Chambliss noticed a change in Saunders’ demeanor not long after the season began.

“At first, I thought he was binging on his diet,” Chambliss told us.  “The kid was practically sweating fried chicken.  But eventually, he filled me in on the prank.  I think he could have fought past Wedge’s zany antics if it hadn’t gone to the next level.”

Saunders refused to elaborate, nearly breaking into tears at the question, but interviews with his teammates revealed a series of ongoing chicken-related abuses inside the clubhouse.  Live chickens were put in his hotel room on the road.  Boullion cubes were hidden in his water bottle.  During closed batting practice sessions, Wedge would throw buttered biscuits at Saunders’ head when he was trying to readjust his struggling swing.  And worst of all, Wedge wouldn’t even allow teammates to talk to Saunders after a while.

“A couple weeks ago, during that closed door meeting, Wedge issued an ultimatum declaring that none of us could talk to Saunders,” an anonymous teammate reported.  “Instead, we were only allowed to bawk at him like a chicken if he talked to us.  The guy was going nuts after the first day.  It’s too much for anyone to take.  I even heard he asked for a demotion to Tacoma the other day, but all Wedge would do is bawk at the poor guy.”

Wedge denied any knowledge of the situation when we confronted him this morning, but did treat us to a bucket of wings on our way out.  This reporter concludes that Saunders needs to stop making excuses and hit the frickin’ baseball.

Geoff Baker Stumbles Upon Solution For Mariners: Hit Balls In The Air/Far Friday, April 29, 2011

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Photo Courtesy Seattle Times

In an announcement today in the Seattle Times’ Mariners Blog, Mariners Beat Reporter Geoff Baker released the key to baseball victory in Seattle in his latest blog post.

“I’ve always been a big fan of fly balls,” the reporter mused. “But when fly balls go far, you get a point for them and the crowd gets all excited.  I’m certain the reason we managed to sweep the Tigers had something to do with the long ones.”

Baker’s reasoning was immediately embraced by team management, who made promises to do everything possible to “ensure more long fly balls in the future” according to a press release this morning.

Rumors also surfaced of a raise in Baker’s future for his outstanding coverage and insight.

“I’m proud of anything I can do to support this team I purport to love,” Baker continued. “Go Felix! YAY!”

Felix Isn’t Mad… Just Disappointed Monday, April 18, 2011

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After tying the worst start in franchise history through 15 games (1981), trade rumors were swirling around Felix Hernandez.  His struggles through his last three starts have been blamed on a so-called “frustration” with his teammates, culminating in a team meeting with Eric Wedge this weekend after his latest start.

While the Mariners had remained tight-lipped initially, one player finally addressed what happened during the closed-door session Monday morning on a condition of anonymity.

“Buster Olney’s way off on this one,” said the struggling anonymous Mariner who has only had two walks this season despite being lauded as a patient and pesky hitter.  “Felix isn’t mad at all, which is actually worse.”

Tears etching the corner of his eyes, the anonymous corner infielder continued.  “Wedgie had him (Felix) walk to the front of the room to tell us all how it felt to be let down like we did on Saturday.  When he got there, he opened his mouth, but couldn’t say anything.  He just sighed and sat back down.  It was like a knife in all our sides.”

“We all wish he would have yelled at us.  It would have been easier to take.  But when he just looks at you and you know you’ve lost his respect, that’s worse than anything.”

Felix was contacted by phone immediately after his teammate came forward, but didn’t have much to say.

“You love and support them and hope you’ve done right by them, and then this happens, and you don’t know what to say.  I’m disappointed, and I thought I raised them better than this, but you can only do so much as an ace.”

Photo courtesy gtn206.com