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Take 2

A different spin on sports by The Seattle Times staff and readers.

February 16, 2013 at 2:00 PM

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What Seattle Times sports readers are saying

Felix Hernandez

Toss win-loss record in trash

Donn Wedge’s description of Felix Hernandez as a mediocre pitcher (“Felix isn’t a $25M pitcher,” Backtalk, Feb. 9) is another reminder that not all baseball fans have relegated win-loss records to the trash heap where they belong.

It wasn’t a mistake that Felix won the 2011 Cy Young award, when he was “only” 13-12. If the Mariners’ offense had been anything other than anemic that year, he would have been, say, 21-4. But he would have been exactly the same pitcher, which is why “win-loss” has more to do with run support than any other factor.

On the other hand, earned-run average is about the pitcher only. It doesn’t punish the guy who loses five straight because he’s supported by banjo hitters. To find a guy who can consistently win 20 games without run support, you have to go back to Sandy Koufax, era for era the greatest pitcher ever.

– Lew Witham, Seattle

Fans deserved signing Felix

Not only is Felix Hernandez deserving of a $175 million dollar contract with the Mariners, but the fans are deserving of it as well. It sends the right message to the fans and his teammates. It says he and the Mariners are committed to winning here.

– Joseph Radke

A good time to be a fan

As a longtime sports fan, there have been many times over the years where I thought if I hear one more story about an unhappy, overpaid athlete or read about a player abandoning a city for more money, I’d take up checkers or knitting over watching sports. But then something like the Felix Hernandez story happens (“One Happy King,” Feb. 14) and I’m glad I didn’t.

When Felix began his career, I was skeptical. There’s never been a doubt about his ability to pitch but the sideways hat, baggy pants struck me as as attitude and style over substance. As I’ve learned more, I’ve become convinced Felix is the real deal. The Seattle Times’ story about his recent contract being met by tears and his allegiance to Seattle made me tear up a bit as well. I’ve never been so pleased to see an athlete hit big money.

Think about it. Our Seahawks have a local owner and are led by a stellar young quarterback with a work ethic second to none, and the team are on the rise. We have a soon-to-be NBA team owner who is a product of Seattle and wants to give back to the city. And now we have a young, confident Mariners team willing to invest in an ace who is grateful to be here.

And there is more: An outstanding soccer team drawing huge crowds and a WNBA team that is always competitive and brought us a championship. The Huskies are rebounding and in good hands. This is a very good time for sports fans in the Seattle area.

– Danny Wright, Poulsbo


Kings, not Sonics, might move to Seattle

I keep seeing references to the Sonics coming back to Seattle. The Sonics franchise is located in Oklahoma City now. We will be getting the Kings, a team that has consistently won 30 percent of its games for the past three years. They’re just good enough to not get a great player in the draft and just bad enough to consistently get mediocre players in the draft.

I’m sure fans will be excited to see the NBA back and pay the bloated ticket prices until they see the product put on the court. But it bugs me that everyone is talking about the Sonics’ glory days when the team was really bad the last few years in Seattle. The team that comes in here will be bad and will not have any chance to win a title in the near future.

– Dan Johnson, Lynnwood

What if Seattle had had a mayor like KJ?

With all of the news from Sacramento, I keep wondering how things might have been different in Seattle if we had had a mayor like Kevin Johnson who is fighting like crazy to save his team. It still hurts.

– Deb Armor

Jim Sweeney

The perfect Cougars coach

Thank you, Bud Withers, for your fabulous article on former Cougars coach Jim Sweeney (“Sweeney was every color except purple,” Feb. 9). I laughed, I cried, and your article made me realize what a tremendous type of man he was. The perfect Cougar coach.

– Phil Payne, Everett


Abandoning sport and Olympic ideals

I have never wrestled, except with my older brother. However, the decision to drop wrestling from the Olympics is a travesty. Wrestling was one of the main sports of the original Greek Olympiad. If this is the road that the directors of the modern Olympics want to follow, then I suggest they surrender the name Olympics in favor of “Fun and Games”, or “Television Revenue Raising Semi-Sports.”

Wrestling is one of the few sports that doesn’t cost the athletes great sums of money to participate. I can see the day coming when playing video games will be part of this scenario. Can you imagine the ancient Greek athletes roaring with laughter at modern men and their “sports”?

– Don Rogers, Camano Island

Send us your backtalk: Letters bearing real names, addresses and telephone numbers for verification are considered for publication. Please limit letters to 125 words or less. They are subject to editing and become the property of The Times. Fax them to 206-493-0934 or mail to: Backtalk, Seattle Times Sports, P.O. Box 70, Seattle, WA 98111. Or email to:

Want to be a reader contributor to the Seattle Times' Take 2 blog? Email your original, previously unpublished work or proposal to Sports Editor Don Shelton at or Not all submissions can be published. The Times reserves the right to edit and publish any submissions online and/or in print.

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