Introducing the Jerry Dipoto Fan Club Podcast

Hot Stove season is here, and my friend Joseph and I wanted to record a podcast to discuss the M’s. We miss baseball season already.

How can the M’s improve their roster? Plug in your headphones or your neighborhood aux cord and see what you think.

 

Sweeping the Ashes: Trading Dustin Ackley

The 2008 iteration of the Seattle Mariners were 58-101 entering the final series of the season. There was a chance that this team, the first MLB team in history with a $100 million payroll and lose 100 games in the same season, could end up with the first round pick in the 2009 MLB draft. The last two 1/1 draft picks the Mariners had chosen ended up working out decently in 1987 and 1993 I guess. Perhaps the 2009 draft could be a future cornerstone for years to come.

Instead, the Mariners swept the Oakland A’s in that final 2008 series. The Washington Nationals lost all three games against the eventual World Series champion Philadelphia Phillies. The Mariners would have the 2nd pick in the 2009 MLB draft.

On June 9th, 2009, the Mariners selected Dustin Ackley with the 2nd pick. This was widely considered to be the sensible pick. Although his potential ceiling was not viewed to be as high as the 1st pick, San Diego State’s hyped Starting Pitcher Stephen Strasburg, Ackley had a high floor and was going to be a solid building block for the future under the new Mariners front office led by Jack Zduriencik. From a Larry Stone article from June 10, 2009:

“We think he’s a player that will move pretty quick…” Zduriencik said.

AND

“…all the things you like in a hitter, he possesses.”

The MLB draft is strange as a fan. Just like any other draft, it’s all about the potential. But with baseball, there is a good chance that a draft pick – even in the first round – may never see the majors or be an impact player. But as Dustin Ackley made his way through the minor leagues, his potential seemed to be attainable. He slashed .303/421/.487 in AAA in 2011. When he was promoted to the majors on June 16, 2011, there was a real feeling of hope in the fanbase. The only concern was his defense. “His bat has never been a question,” said Pedro Grifol, the Mariners director of minor-league operations at the time.

I was certainly one of the hopeful, and I was lucky enough to be there for his debut on June 17, 2011 against the Philadelphia Phillies. With Roy Oswalt on the hill, Ackley fell behind 0-2 before rapping a groundball into center field.

I was sitting in the left field bleachers, and I was able to view the entire stadium erupt in a cheer that I was unaccustomed to. Ackley was part of the future. Despite the 2010 season being another $100 million, 100 loss atrocity, Ackley was the real sign from the farm system that this franchise was going to turn a corner. That base hit was going to be one of many. The potential of Dustin Ackley that I and many other fans had envisioned in 2009 was tangible.

It turns out that his first base hit was one of a mere 488 hits in a Mariner uniform. Despite an excellent .273/.348/.417 and 3 fWAR rookie season in 2011, it ended up being the only season of Ackley’s career where he was an above average hitter. His 2011 September — .182/.264/.247 – portended a disappointing and frustrating 2012-2015. His mechanics seemed consistently out of whack, despite changes to his approach that were somewhat hopeful as recently as the second half of last season. His defense at second base was actually above average in 2011 and 2012, and when he moved to the outfield in 2014 after the Robinson Cano signing, his defense remained a positive (according to Fangraphs). His bat ended up being a question that the Mariners could never answer.

The slow start to this season was the final straw for this front office: Ackley was traded to the New York Yankees today for Ramon Flores and Jose Ramirez. The hope that Ackley once provided was extinguished long ago; this trade is merely sweeping up the ashes of the past six years.

I am not upset with Ackley. Being upset with a player for failing to live up to expectations would mean that the MLB draft is a more predictable endeavor. It would mean that our expectations as fans are reasonable (laughs audibly) and ultimately important in the grand scheme of life. The draft is clearly not an exact science, and baseball remains a game and a business that can be enjoyed voluntarily.

But I have chosen to support this team. I am forever tied to this team because fan allegiance is not rational. I cannot shake my allegiance to this team. I know I am not the only one.

I am upset that the path to Mariners success has extended further into the future. I am upset that this team clearly has a player development problem. Other than bullpen arms – 2011-12 Wilhelmsen, 2013-14 Farquhar, 2014-15 Carson Smith – and Ackley’s college teammate and fellow 2009 draft pick Kyle Seager (third round), the Mariners have whiffed on Ackley and their 2011 first round pick (Hultzen, largely because of injury). Mike Zunino, their 2012 first round pick, was perhaps rushed to the majors and until the past couple weeks (link to LL article) has looked about as helpless at the plate as a professional baseball player can possibly look (his 57 wRC+ has only been better than five other players with more than 300 plate appearances). D.J. Peterson, their 2013 first round pick, had a robust .636 OPS in AA and was promptly rewarded a promotion to AAA because moving forward is progress, I guess.

And that is why this Ackley trade makes me sad as a fan. Was this Ackley’s fault? I am sure he shoulders a large responsibility for his career trajectory, but the Seattle Mariners under Jack Zduriencik have done exactly what the previous front office had done from 2003 to 2008 under Bill Bavasi: fail to develop high draft picks. They consistently have questions — such as Ackley’s bat — that they fail to answer.

Ackley was the first draft pick made by Jack Z. The hope that Ackley engendered during his MLB debut turned out to be false, but his career thus far is a reminder that the hope Mariners fans had when the new front office was hired in 2008 was false as well. With the Astros set for the present and the future, the Angels set with one of the best young players in baseball history (who was selected with the 25th pick in the 2009 draft), the Rangers set with a good farm system and a recently acquired Cole Hamels to pair with a recovering Yu Darvish, and the Athletics set with a GM and front office that has run circles around the Mariners for about 15 years, the path to Mariners success is even cloudier now than it felt at the end of the 2008 season.

I am going to keep watching this franchise. Who knows if Jack Z will keep his job for much longer, or if the next front office will even have better success (or any success at all). But I certainly will be more skeptical of a top prospect’s debut the next time a moment like June 17, 2011 comes around. After the last six years, I should know better than that.

So long, Dustin Ackley. I’ll be rooting for you, just as I did four years ago. I just hope the next Dustin Ackley takes the hope of Mariner fans, takes that first base hit, and keeps me and the rest of us cheering from the left field bleachers in a more lasting manner.

Does J.A. Happ Help? I Guess We Will Find Out

Michael Saunders is not a star. He was never supposed to be a star. His best year was in 2012 when he accumulated 2.1 fWAR in 139 games with a .247/.306/.432 slash and 108 wRC+. In 2014, Michael Saunders played in just 78 games, but accumulated 1.9 WAR, an above average walk rate, a slash of .273/.341/.450 and a 126 wRC+. Michael Saunders is in the thick of his prime, and if he can stay healthy, the Blue Jays have a player that could blow past his 2015 Steamer projection of 2.4 WAR.

Saunders was a useful player from 2012-2014 and projects to be useful in 2015. For a team that projects to be in the playoff hunt once again, trading Saunders for J.A. Happ does not make much sense in a vacuum.

Of course, this trade cannot be evaluated in a vacuum. None of us know for sure what happened to ruin the relationship between Saunders and the Mariners. Whatever it was, he is now a Toronto Blue Jay. For whatever its worth, he did this in 2012 against the Blue Jays:

 

Now he gets to do it in a home uniform.


 

The problem for the Blue Jays, of course, is the health of Saunders. This was apparently one of the reasons Saunders fell out of favor with the Mariners front office and Manager Lloyd McClendon. A couple revealing quotes from an October article from Adam Lewis at MLB.com:

“I’d love for him to be out there,” McClendon said. “He’s got to get in the weight room.”

AND

“I think his numbers tell you that he is [a starting right fielder]. But the problem is he’s not out there every day,” McClendon said. “There’s no better joy for a manager than to be able to write a name into the lineup every day. But when a guy is on the DL, it’s tough. It throws everything out of whack.”

McClendon and the Mariners are now rid of a guy who is not an “everyday player.” They now have J.A. Happ. Happ is 32 years old. For some reason I thought he was 28. Some age younger than 32 at least. That probably would not have affected this trade anyway. What does affect the evaluation of this trade is the fact that Happ is owed $6.7 million this year. Yikes. Saunders outperformed him every season from 2012-2014 and is owed $2.3 million. It is still possible that the Blue Jays may pay for some of Happ’s contract, but Happ is certainly not worth almost three times as much as Saunders.

Do the Mariners truly trust this potential outfield alignment?

LF Dustin Ackley

CF Austin Jackson

RF James Jones/Stefen Romero/Nelson Cruz (Apparently for 25% of the time)

No, they probably have more moves left in them. Perhaps a trade for one Yoenis Cespedes. Michael Saunders is a good trade chip to dangle in a package for the potentially righty-skewed Red Sox lineup.

Oh, wait. Saunders is gone now. Hmmm.

Perhaps Melky Cabrera? The dude rakes! Look it what he has done when he has done from 2012-2014:

.305/.339/.470, 118 wRC+, 3.7 WAR

.346/.390/.516, 151 wRC+, 4.5 WAR

.279/.322/.360, 86 wRC+, -0.9 WAR

.301/.351/.458, 125 wRC+, 2.6 WAR

2013 has to be considered an outlier. Especially since he had a TUMOR ON HIS SPINE during the season. I will hypothesize that the tumor may have been an obstacle for Melky.

Except the Mariners just signed Nelson Cruz to a deal that brings the Mariners payroll that could approach $110 million. Will they be willing to shell out more money? Apparently so:

Cruz is a clear win-now move, especially considering the seemingly inevitable downside of the final two years in the deal. If the Mariners want to win, spending even more money may certainly be on the table. It is not like the Mariners or any other MLB team can genuinely cry poor (the Mariners definitely included). Melky has also suspended for PED use in the past, so a Melky and Cruz free agent cocktail seems nothing but natural.

But Saunders could have been useful in improving the lineup, either by his presence or as an asset in a trade. Now he is gone, for a player that costs more money and has been worse for three years in a row. It feels strange.


 

J.A. Happ has an unfortunate internet problem. When you Google his name, the awful video of him taking a line drive to the head in 2013 appears frequently. Luckily for Happ, Happ’s family, and Happ enthusiasts, he showed no ill-effects from the head injury during the 2014 season. Let us take a look at J.A. Happ statistics from 2012-2014:

2012: 28 G, 24 GS, 144.2 IP, 4.79, 4.01, 3.92, 1.8 fWAR

2013: 18 G, 18 GS, 92.2 IP, 4.56, 4.31, 4.82, 1.2 fWAR

2014: 30 G, 26 GS, 158.0 IP, 4.22, 4.27, 3.95, 1.3 fWAR

J.A. Happ has a career ERA- of 106 and a career FIP- of 109. Last season, J.A. Happ posted a ERA- of 107 and a FIP- of 109. In other words, J.A. Happ was his normal self. He showed no ill-effects from the injury, but that means he was still a slightly below average major league starter. Happ has shown a propensity to induce fly balls (40.6% in 2014, 38.2% career. 40.6% would have tied for 12th in MLB in 2014 if he had hit the innings minimum). At the top of the fly ball % leaderboards for the 2014 season was tall Chris Young (Holy crap he beat the second place starting pitcher by 10%). Hey! Tall Chris Young provided some value in Safeco Field. Perhaps Happ can as well?

Happ most likely will. If nothing else, Happ has been consistently, slightly below average. He has never pitched more than 166 innings, so the Mariners are not getting a workhorse, but they are not getting a disaster. The need for rotation depth was there. This seems to be the projection for the rotation at the moment:

Felix Hernandez

Hisashi Iwakuma

James Paxton

J.A. Happ

Roenis Elias/Taijuan Walker

-TBD

Was Happ worth it? No. But a Saunders trade was inevitable, so here we are. The Mariners have not improved the team, but the offseason portends more moves too. The outfield need is now more dire, but the rotation depth has been slightly bolstered. Maybe an outfield platoon is in order as well. The trade is not a sad, but it is not necessarily J.A. Happy either (yeesh. Time to end the post)

The truly big question is: What are the odds that Happ’s Safeco music will be “Happy” by Pharrell?

Mariners get Kendrys against his will

The Mariners extended the qualifying offer to Kendrys Morales last offseason. He declined. The Mariners offered him a deal during the season, including a possible 3/$30 million deal. He declined.

But for Kendrys, he has no choice now. You are a Mariner and YOU WILL LIKE IT.

The Mariners flipped Stephen Pryor to the Minnesota Twins for Kendrys, a move that makes sense considering the Mariners need for a bat. The struggles of Corey Hart, Justin Smoak and Logan Morrison at 1B/DH have been well-documented, and with a legitimate shot at the second wild card spot and the playoffs (Fangraphs projections give the Mariners a 29.1% chance for the Wild Card), the Mariners need to improve an offense that is tied for last in the American League on a park-adjusted basis.

Here is the problem with this deal:

Yeah, Morales has been terrible this season. Atrocious. Abysmal. His walks are down and he has just one home run in 162 plate appearances. There is no guarantee that he will be able to hit this season, and if the Mariners are getting another below replacement level bat, then this deal means nothing at all.

Luckily, Morales has been consistent over the past couple years putting up a 119 and 118 WRC+ (a statistic that encompasses all offensive contributions and adjusts them for ballpark factors) in two home ballparks that favor pitchers. Despite Safeco’s reputation as a pitchers park, it actually is decent for left-handed hitters (see Seager, Kyle and Branyan, Russell), which is exactly the opposite of Target Field in Minnesota — where left-handed power goes to die — unless you are David Ortiz.

For further positive spin (a new thing for a Mariners fan this year), Kendrys missed all of spring training and the first two months of the season because of his weird qualifying offer and the generally correct league-wide consensus that a bat-only first baseman is not worth a big financial commitment. 162 plate appearances is a small sample size, so perhaps Morales will go back to mashing at an above average league rate just in time for the Mariners playoff push. Zips and Steamer seem to think this is true, as the systems project Kendrys for 0.2 WAR and 0.5 WAR respectively.

This trade is kind of like the Carter Capps/Logan Morrison deal in the offseason. A move that I still like despite Morrison’s struggles. Giving up a two-pitch maximum reliever for a hitter in his mid-20s with projectable power is a no-brainer, and Morrison has looked good at the plate for awhile now without much to show for it (he has a super low .231 BABIP despite a normal LD% for his career). Zips projects him for just 0.1 WAR, with Steamer more optimistic at 0.5 — basically the same as Kendrys’s projection. Losing a relief pitcher like Capps (who already succumbed to Tommy John this season) that was struggling with his velocity and possesses a slider with a large platoon split is not something to cry about. It is amazing that this Larry Stone article from two years ago is already outdated, though.

Because of this trade, however, I would anticipate Hart to be designated for assignment. Not only does he have balky knees, but the cost of the DFA would be minimal considering his $5 million deal was incentive-laden. Unless the incentives were to put up a 78 WRC+, I doubt Hart will be receiving the full $5 million. Although Hart still has a chance to turn it around, the clock is certainly ticking.

The Mariners still need an outfielder. Putting James Jones and Endy Chavez and Dustin Ackley on the field is a request for other teams to pass you in the standings. Until Saunders gets back, this is one of the worst outfield situations in the MLB. The Morales move does not solve this problem. But the move is low-risk with potential for some upside. The Mariners need all of the hitting help they can get.

Marlon Byrd, Ben Zobrist, Justin Ruggiano and Morales’ now former teammate Josh Willingham are still available, and although there are roadblocks to acquiring all four (Willingham has made it clear that he does not want to go to Safeco either so maybe the Mariners should just trade for him too. The Morales/Willingham interviews will not be awkward AT ALL), one of these players could combine with the Kendrys move to push the needle enough toward a Mariners wild card berth. Maybe then we can see endless celebrations that totally aren’t sexual at all.

Morales-Vargas, Joey Bada$$ and Sleeping In. How are they all related?

The Mariners traded Jason Vargas for Kendrys Morales on Wednesday. I also slept in until 11 am. How are these events tangentially related? Well, I clearly have too much time on my hands, therefore I should rekindle my blog and talk about the effects of this trade!

Hip-Hop Music for this Post

I always listen to hip-hop, especially when I write. Today’s choice is the 1999 mixtape from Joey Bada$$ from earlier this year. It might be my favorite mixtape of the year, and Joey and the rest of the Pro Era crew will be dropping a new project today and it should be pretty dope. Check out their website. Here is a sample of the dopeness of 1999.

Is this a Good Trade for the Mariners?

Do you remember when the Mariners had hitters who could hit at least 25 home runs per season if fully healthy? The last guy to do that in a Mariner uniform was Russell Branyan in 2009. He was traded halfway through 2010 and finished with 25 home runs. Other than that, Mariners fans “rejoiced” last year when Kyle Seager hit his 20th home run. 20!! Best believe!!!

That’s depressing.

What isn’t depressing is the fact that this Morales-Vargas trade actually makes complete sense for the Mariners. It was essentially a swap of an average player for an average player, but the Mariners need for the Angels average player should improve their team (I should mention that, as usual, all statistics come via Fangraphs.com, and if you are not acquainted with the stat WRC+, follow the link and learn. It is an incredibly useful statistic).

Morales is an above average hitter when healthy

When Branyan was sending moonshots out of Safeco Field, Morales was putting together his breakout season down in Anaheim. Morales mashed 34 home runs and put up an impressive slash line — .306/.355/.569 — with a  136 WRC+. He was on his way to another standout season at age 27 in 2010 with 11 home runs and a .290/.346/.487 slash line with a 128 WRC+ through 51 games. Unfortunately he broke his leg in a celebration (against the Mariners, interestingly enough) at the plate after hitting a walk-off home run at the end of May. It was gruesome, and he missed the rest of 2010 and the entire 2011 season.

Needless to say, he was a little rusty starting last year, but the rust was mainly reserved for his power stroke. After posting the .569 and .487 slugging percentages over 759 at bats in 2009 and 2010, he could only manage .388, .443, .451 and .397 through the first four months of the 2012 season with just 11 home runs. Luckily for us, Mariners fans (yes, we have something to be excited about!), he slugged a robust .570 and .506 with 11 home runs in August and September over 189 at bats.

Granted two months is a small sample size, but the reason we can read something into it as fans is because Morales has been a powerful bat before. A .500 slugging percentage is not outrageous for him, and if he does that it would be a godsend for the Mariners lineup. After all, the highest slugging percentage for the M’s last year with a full season  of plate appearances (Jaso, much to the chagrin of yours truly, only was able to compile 361 PA’s. SHAME on you Eric Wedge)? Michael Saunders at .432. I love Saunders, but he should not be the best hitter in a lineup.

Now for the traditional cold water that I like to throw on any positive Mariners happiness

Morales is a switch-hitter, which in theory is pretty cool. But a lot of switch-hitters actually are much better from one side of the plate, and Morales is no exception. In fact, his career splits are fairly drastic. Check it out:

vs. RHP as LH: 127 WRC+ .290/.345/.514

vs LHP as RH: 84 WRC+ .250/.286/.416

As a left-handed hitter, Morales is above-average and he has 30 home run pop. As a right-handed hitter, Morales has shown an offensive ability equivalent to that of…Brendan Ryan in 2011. Wait, seriously?!?!

Seriously. However, Morales has only compiled 392 plate appearances, which is not even a full season of work. So it is a small sample size and maybe he has more to offer as a right-handed hitter! Or, maybe he will continue to be equivalent to a light-hitting shorstop 😦 Luckily, the M’s should have no trouble platooning him with Montero and Smoak. Montero raked against lefties last year (132 WRC+) and Smoak was actually about league average against lefties (99 WRC+).

Another issue with Morales is the fact that he is an atrocious baserunner. Morales cost the Angels about 2.5 runs last year on the bases, as well as 2.2, 14 and 2.7 in his ’08, ’09 and ’10 seasons. Yikes. That 14 number is probably an anomaly, but as you can see, he has been consistently bad on the bases throughout his career.

Verdict

All in all, the trade makes sense for the Mariners. Vargas gave them everything he could, and with the fences moving in, Vargas may have found the confines of Safeco Field less comfy and he would not have been as effective (Vargas’s Home/Road splits in 2010 and 2012 are a clinic in the importance of park factors. In 2011, he was strangely better on the road, so we learn the importance of small sample sizes! Yay, we can learn even when we are not in school!!). Vargas moves to a very good pitchers park with Trout and Bourjos — possibly the two best defensive outfielders in the game — behind him, so I wish him the best of luck. He was a good Mariner, but not a Mariner you are particularly sad to lose, unfortunately.

As for Morales, he will hopefully provide a hitter that the Mariners desperately need in their lineup. He has hit for power at home and on the road throughout his career, and if the Mariners platoon him correctly, it will be a major upgrade for this lineup.

My post tomorrow will be about the implications this trade has for Justin Smoak. On Sunday, I will post about where the Mariners should look next for offseason upgrades. Where in the heck is this initiative for blogging coming from??

King Felix Decrees the Rays Shall Not Hit

Felix just threw a Perfect Game. I was there.

No, really, I was there! Here is a picture of the Safeco Field video screen and my ticket:

Do you believe me now? I bet some of you don’t believe me. Shame.

Seattle loves King Felix more than San Diego loves Ron Burgundy, and it’s not even close.

I love the Mariners about as much as one can love them (being a big fan results in health issues, such as depression and constant frustration. Distancing yourself from the Mariners is actually a healthy choice, but oh well, Sodo Mojo!). I am not going to say that I deserved to see this -because nobody deserves anything – but I am not not saying that either.

This is the first perfect game in Mariner history, and having it thrown by Felix at Safeco can’t be more perfect. Mariner fans are overprotective of Felix, and for good reason. We have analysts constantly shoving ill-conceived claims that he needs to be traded down our throats. I say ill-advised because a) big trades do not return a Felix-type value more often than not and b) FELIX IS OURS. Plus, having claims shoved down your throat is extremely uncomfortable and/or painful.

Watching Felix today was incredible. He threw 113 pitches, 77 for strikes. John Jaso told him to throw 24 curveballs. Felix decided to throw 20 of those for strikes, with 10 of them being whiffs. With his last 28 pitches, he threw 24 off-speed. When he fell behind 2-o to Sean Rodriguez with one out to go, he motioned to Jaso, basically saying, “I got this”. Yeah, he got it. He threw an unhittable slider on the outside corner — swing and miss. Two pitches later: perfection. I think we need a new word for filthy. Does Kingly work? I don’t know, but seeing that curve and the change and the slider in person made me almost feel bad for the Rays hitters. But then I slapped myself, because I have no pity for Rays hitters.

His changeup, as usual, was otherworldly. The speed of his last changeup was 92 mph. Are you kidding me? His fastball got faster as the game went on. Felix obviously wanted this more than anybody. The adrenaline was pumping.

The King’s Court was going crazy all game; this is because they are awesome. Once it reached the sixth inning though, the entire crowd believed. We had seen the King pitch well, but today there was something special in the air. Maybe it was because it was a perfect summer day. Maybe it was because Miguel Olivo was not playing. Whatever it was, Mariners fans don’t get this feeling very often, so when we realized it, we all collectively grasped it by its metaphorical horns and rode the crap out of it.

This perfect game has to be one of the most dominant in history. 12 strikeouts and not a single transcendent defensive play. Jaso had a tough play on a dribbler, and Thames had to run down a tough ball in the first inning, but that was it. He struck out six of his last seven batters. Do you think Felix wanted to announce his Cy Young candidacy? I guess his 2 hit shutout of the Yankees 11 days ago wasn’t clear enough. This was his fourth shutout of the season, he is second in WAR to Verlander…I’m just saying, it is not far-fetched.

As for today, this performance was a masterpiece. Mariners fans will cherish this forever. More importantly, Felix will cherish this forever. He more than deserves it. After the game, he dedicated it to the fans. TO US. Felix, we love you.

Something perfect happened to Seattle today. Felix showed why being a Mariners fan can be great, and today was the icing on the cake of what has so far been a career worthy of a king. I was there today, and let me tell you, the icing tasted damn good.

My Linfield Freshman Portfolio

My first semester of college is over. It seems to have passed by just as fast as the credibility of the Clippers in this years playoffs (and let me tell you, that is fast).

A reflection piece about my first year of college may be necessary, but this post is for a different reason.

For my Media Writing class, I have built a writing portfolio over the semester, and the PDF file on this blog post is this very portfolio I speak of. We wrote practice news stories, a mapped story about a school event, broadcast scripts, ideas for future blog post optimization, a press release, a query letter and a resume (yes, I am open to being hired…so take a look at the resume…call me, maybe?).

Along with all of these assignments, I have been required to write some of the blog posts on this site for class, including the Leonard Pitts post and the Miguel Olivo post. My final assignment for this class was to write a profile story on a subject related to my blog! You can find the profile story in the PDF file, or READ IT HERE.

My profile subject is Jerry Gray, a former semi-pro baseball player and college football player. After experiencing many ups and downs in his sports career, he helped me chronicle his path to a successful career as a financial planner in Arizona. Jerry is someone who we can all learn something from, whether it be how to carry yourself, how to pick yourself up when you are down or how to treat people the right way.

I hope you enjoy the story. It was one of the hardest pieces I’ve ever had to write (no, I am not looking for your pity. But if you want to give me some that is fine too!), and hopefully I will be able to write more profile stories in the future.

Thanks for reading my blog during this school year, and I will continue writing throughout the summer. It will probably document the struggles of the Mariners, the European soccer championships or whatever I think is the most interesting. No matter what I write about, my freshman year has been wonderful, and hopefully this portfolio is just the beginning of something in my future.

Media Writing Class Portfolio