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February 19, 2011 at 11:12 AM

Mariners talking to Seattle rapper Macklemore about performing Dave Niehaus tribute song for home opener

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The Mariners took the field here on a windy morning today for their first full squad workout of spring training. And while the team prepares for the on-field season, off the field preparations are ongoing as well.
Many of you have written in — some even started a Facebook campaign — to get Seattle rapper Macklemore to perform his Dave Niehaus tribute song My Oh My at the Safeco Field home opener in April. Turns out, according to my sources, that the Mariners have approached Macklemore about doing just that.
Today would have been the 74th birthday for Niehaus, who passed away in November.

Details have yet to be worked out and whether or not the rapper can perform at the home opener — or will have to do so at another date — will depend on his scheduling. No, he won’t be performing the national anthem. The idea is to have him perform the song, which was created by Macklemore and his longtime producer Ryan Lewis.
I’m told the Niehaus family enjoyed the song very much and are all for having Macklemore perform at the opener. So, stay tuned for a ballpark appearance by Macklemore at some point in April.
As for the on-field product, the Mariners were able to get their workout in just under the wire today before some heavier rain began to fall. The high winds created virtual sandstorms on some fields and caused players to have to hold on to the batting cages during BP to keep them from rolling away.
Mariners manager Eric Wedge kept the players behind closed doors for an hour in a team meeting in which he spelled out what’s expected of them.

Wedge has talked before about this being a “new beginning” for the team and was concerned about getting the right message delivered to players during the meeting. He wasn’t planning on rehashing all of the nonsense that went on last year — a good move, since many of the 63 players in camp weren’t around at spring training a year ago.
But Wedge wants to make it clear what he expects in terms of accountability and professionalism. After that, if a player doesn’t do what’s expected, he’s prepared to crack down hard. And believe me, he has the “juice” from upstairs to do so.
Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik has made it clear he isn’t about to tolerate any more nonsense this year. He’s put young players on notice that they’ll begin the year in Class AAA if they don’t show enough to stick in the majors.
And he’s let veteran players know that they have to behave like veterans.
That’s a big reason, I suspect, that Adam Kennedy was on the phone calling up beat writers within hours of his arrest on a DUI charge last month and taking responsibility for his mistake. Kennedy will probably make the major league team and is being counted on for veteran leadership in the clubhouse this season.
Kennedy made it a point to tell writers during his phone conversations that he’d spoken to Zduriencik and that the GM had been very disappointed with him.
Anyhow, that’s that. Kennedy is here and working out. Zduriencik is on the field watching players go through their routines.
From here on in, everyone knows what’s expected. Now, it’s up to the players to produce or be replaced.



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