Seattle Mariners Vs. Oakland

In their home-field season opener, the Mariners are a so-so team (85-77 last year), with a not-cheap roster led by hitting maestro Ichiro Suzuki and newly acquired leftie speedballer Cliff Lee. Facing the M’s in three games (through Weds.) are the Oakland Athletics, a lagging rival in the AL West (75-87 last season) with an even blander lineup. On the field, the A’s most recognizable name may be journeyman centerfielder Coco Crisp. Is he a great player? No. But his name is Coco Crisp! Give that guy a breakfast cereal already! In the clubhouse, however, the A’s have a real star: General Manager Billy Beane, the smart, penny-pinching hero of Moneyball, the 2003 bestseller by Michael Lewis (you know: the Blind Side and Big Short guy). In fact, Beane is so esteemed that Brad Pitt has been trying for years to play him in a much-delayed movie adaptation of Moneyball. By contrast, no one wants to make a movie about Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik—a perfectly capable, pleasant, doughy executive who, unfortunately, lacks Beane’s good looks and quant appeal. But if Moneyball ever gets made and there’s a short scene for Zduriencik, we’d cast David Koechner (you know: Bill Packer from The Office). T. BOND

Mon., April 12, 3:40 p.m.; Tue., April 13, 7:10 p.m.; Wed., April 14, 7:10 p.m., 2010

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