Mariners Vs. Royals

Barring the greatest September winning streak in the history of baseball, the Mariners will not be making the playoffs this year. Last year, this news could have struck fans (and did, and then some) as a major disappointment. But this year’s different: The M’s were supposed to suck, and that was before the team had to deal with a neverending onslaught of injuries to key players. Instead, they gamely remained in the postseason hunt until mid-August. This entire year was supposed to be about next year, or the year after next. But instead, this year’s been about this year—until now. If Adrian Beltre heads to a contender via trade or waivers, fans needn’t fret. That’s what happens to veteran players in the final month of their contract. Instead, revel in the fact that Matt Tuiasosopo, the M’s third-sacker of the future and a member of perhaps the Northwest’s greatest multi-generational sporting family, will get the reps he needs to make a run at a full-time job in 2010. Which doesn’t mean the Mariners won’t remain competitive, especially if they’re playing a perennial bed-shitter like the Kansas City Royals, in town tonight to begin a four-game stand. MIKE SEELY

Aug. 27-30, 7:10 p.m.; Sun., Aug. 30, 1:10 p.m., 2009

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