As per recent tradition, Canadians have filled up T-mobile park in Seattle for the weekend series with the Mariners, and some fans aren’t happy about it. Boo, freakin’, hoo.
You might have read the title of this article and assumed that I had written some sort of satirical Canadian apology to Seattle Mariner fans. I’ll admit, I considered that angle.
Instead, I’m choosing to use a sarcastic tone this time, and I’ll stand by my belief that somebody needs to invent a universally accepted sarcasm font. It would have been handy in this case when talking about the Blue Jays’ series with the Mariners at T-Mobile Park in Seattle this weekend.
Over the last number of years it’s become a bit of a tradition for west coast Canadians to make the trip to Seattle when the Blue Jays are in town, and more often than not it’s referred to as a “Canadian Invasion”. That’s because the ballpark usually has more Blue Jay jerseys than Mariners’ swag when Toronto is in town. It’s great for business for the Mariners of course, but not everyone is a fan of feeling like a road team in their home ballpark.
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The most notable critic this weekend has been Ken Jennings, known for his incredible run on Jeopardy. While I respect and admire his obvious intelligence when it comes to trivia, I can’t say I care for his taste in baseball teams. I’m sure in many ways he was just having some fun, especially after the reaction from Canadian media and from Twitter users all over North America, but it started with him being genuinely annoyed by the Blue Jay fans filling up T-Mobile.
To be fair, Jennings doesn’t speak for the Mariners, their ownership, or even the rest of the fan base, but he’s far from alone in his feelings toward the excited Canadian baseball fans. Ian Hunter detailed a few others who griped about the “invasion” in his piece on the Daily Hive yesterday, which includes the brainiac who held up a sign saying that United States have won the last 25 NHL Stanley Cups. (Somebody should tell him that the 2019 champion St. Louis Blues had more Canadians on their roster than any other team in the NHL this year, but that’s besides the point. Apparently he prefers the Olympic record argument).
It certainly won’t have helped any Mariners fans that the Blue Jays won the second of their three game set last night, picking up a 7-5 victory after dropping the opener 7-3 on Friday. The rubber match goes on Sunday afternoon, with the first pitch at 4:10pm EST, and I’ll be slightly more invested in a series win than I should be. In a rebuilding season, sometimes spite can be good for some August entertainment.
At the end of the day, any sort of rivalry that builds between the two clubs is a good thing, and this is really just good, clean fun. However, if I had Mr. Jennings’ address, I’d likely send him a t-shirt with a big FedEx logo on it.