STACY ROST

Bump and Stacy issue sports apologies to Mariners’ Kelenic, more

May 5, 2023, 4:02 PM

Bump and Stacy Mariners Jarred Kelenic...

Mariners OF Jarred Kelenic reacts after hitting a solo home run against the Cubs on March 1, 2023. (Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

(Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images)

Sometimes we need to admit when we were wrong.

Remember FOX Sports host Jason Mcintyre shaving a Seahawks logo on his head when Seattle surpassed his wildest expectations for the season?

How about Shaquille O’Neil’s viral apology during a postgame interview with Houston Rockets forward Christian Wood in 2021 after Wood dropped 21 points on the Spurs?

“I owe you an apology,” O’Neil said in the now widely-used meme. “I wasn’t really familiar with your game.”

It’s not a viral moment, but ESPN’s Jeff Passan issued an apology of his own to Mariners fans.

In December, Passan told Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk that Mariners fans complaining about their team’s lack of additions were being “spoiled” and “greedy.”

The MLB insider walked it back this week.

“I was wrong about that,” Passan said. “The Mariners did need another bat, and fans were correct in their assessment that the Mariners should’ve gone out and gotten more.”

Well, Passan isn’t alone in being wrong about something. We’ve all been wrong about sports figures, teams, and predictions. Which is why on this week’s Bump and Stacy, we all issued some sports apologies of our own.

Bump: Apologies to … Austin Reaves

Seattle fans may not be closely attuned to the NBA playoffs right now, but the Lakers blew past the Grizzlies thanks in part to a strong series from second-year guard Austin Reaves.

“I want to apologize to Austin Reaves,” lifelong Lakers fan Michael Bumpus said. “The Great White Hope, 6 foot 5, 197 out of Oklahoma. This guy was in the starting lineup, and I go, ‘Is this what Laker Nation has come to? Is this back in the day with Luke Walton? What are we doing here?’ But throughout the year, he’s gotten better. He is the most confident player of his stature that I’ve seen in a very long time. And he’s come up with clutch moments in clutch situations. He makes the right pass, he makes the right decision, and he’ll drop 25 on you if you let him… I apologize to Austin. Because without him, who knows where Laker Nation would be.”

Reaves scored 23 in the first game of LA’s series.

Stacy: Apologies to… Jarred Kelenic

Look, there are a few people who might owe Kelenic an apology. But they also couldn’t be blamed for wondering whether the young star would meet sky-high expectations.

Kelenic debuted in 2021 and wrapped up his season with a less-than-stellar .181 average and 106 strikeouts in 93 games. He struggled even more in 2022, slashing .141/.221/.313.

Then came his 2023 season. Kelenic isn’t just the best hitter for the Mariners right now; he’s one of the best hitters in baseball. He’s slashing .304/.363/.598 with a .961 OPS and has a team-high seven home runs.

“I would like to apologize to Jarred Kelenic,” Rost said. “Did I think he could never succeed at the major league level? No. Did I question whether Kelenic could succeed in Seattle? I’d started to think it might be something where he’d need a fresh start elsewhere, where perhaps he was too far in his head and this relationship between he and Seattle had stalled. Where he had all the talent in the world and just needed a new environment to mentally get right.

“He did get a new environment… in that he changed his offseason training. But he ended up finding success right here in Seattle. So, Jarred, I apologize for giving up on your success with the Mariners a little too soon.”

Curtis: Apologies to… Philipp Grubauer

Goaltending, once thought to be a strength for the Kraken, has felt more like its kryptonite for the better part of two seasons. But during the team’s first ever trip to the Stanley Cup playoffs, netminder Philipp Grubauer has been at his best.

“My apology goes to somebody who I’ve been critical of, for sure,” Rogers said. “Somebody who I think a lot people have been critical of in this market over the last couple seasons. It’s the guy who has been standing on his head over the course of the last eight playoff games, and that has been Philipp Grubauer.

“Over the last two seasons he’s had a combined save percentage of .891. Not great. Goals against average over 3. So far in the playoffs over the first eight games he’s got a .921 save percentage, goals against average is just 2.57. Both are considerably better than his regular season performance. And look, in the playoffs you’ve got to step up… and he’s worthy of this apology because he has been incredible.”

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Bump and Stacy issue sports apologies to Mariners’ Kelenic, more