1. What will it take for the Mariners to win the NL West?
For the Mariners to win the AL West, it sure wouldn't hurt if Josh Hamilton or Nelson Cruz - or both - got injured again. But in order for them to win on their own merit, they're going to need their awesome rotation to keep from wilting completely down the stretch, and they're going to need the lineup to quit being arguably the worst lineup in the league. The Mariners have gotten this far because they simply haven't given up runs. They're going to give up more runs, and God only knows how long they'll be able to count on Michael Pineda and Erik Bedard as we get deep into the summer. So they'll need to score. Dustin Ackley should help. A rejuvenated Ichiro should help. But, man, would it be nice to get something, anything out of Chone Figgins and Franklin Gutierrez. Even just a mediocre lineup might be enough.
2. If you had 30 seconds in an elevator with Bud Selig what would you say?
I would stand awkwardly and uncomfortably for a few seconds, and maybe muster out a "Hey, Mr. Selig." He would respond in kind, and I would ask him how he's doing. After he replied, I'd ask what he's here for, and he'd tell me, or he wouldn't tell me, and then we'd get to his floor and he'd walk away, thinking nothing of the encounter he just had.
3. If you could cover baseball in any other city what city would you choose?
It might be fun to spend a year covering the Giants, but if I were making a career of it, and if it weren't the Mariners, I'd opt to cover the Padres. I wouldn't want to work in a high-pressure, high-intensity environment where people forget that this is just baseball. The Padres are just the right amount of low-key and casual, and it doesn't hurt that I've spent most of my years in San Diego, so there would be a familiarity element there, too. Definitely the Padres. The NL's Mariners.