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Tale of the Tape:
Mariners vs. Starbucks


International voting has helped turn the All-Star extravaganza into a Mariners' home game. No disrespect to the team with the best record in baseball, but will the phenomenon of these new-look M's turn Starbucks into a bitter cup of yesterday's pop-cultural brew?

Seattle -- it has long been the home of coffee, geoducks, and suicide. But has Mariner Mania reinvented its relevance?

Mariners, Starbucks. Let's see how they stack up at the Tale of the Tape ...

Mariners vs. Starbucks

Suddenly A fan in every seat A shop on every corner Push
Whatever happened to ... Alex Rodriguez? The old cups with the mermaids with their fins spread? Starbucks
"Stuffing the ballot box" How the international vote earned all those starters An industry term
for what happens when you chase cabbage rolls with a grandé
Innovations An Asian player who can hit A cup of Joe that costs six dollars Mariners
Who's sorry now? Ken Griffey Jr. Maxwell House Mariners
Used to be Pilots Fifty cents a cup Mariners
"Grounder" A fielder's choice One step below "Barista" Starbucks
Letting rivals overpay Rangers give A-Rod 250 million The $150 million McDonald's coffee-scalding settlement Push, either way it's the fans who pay
"Bean ball" A retaliation A promotion Starbucks
Chatter "Hey, getcha sushi!" "Fill it to the
Pacific Rim!"
Abbreviations M's S'ucks Mariners
Managerial Protests "Sweet Lou" rips up the first-base bag "Pony-tail Joe" overcaffinates Mariners
Ownership A Japanese conglomerate Kenny G. Mariners
New merchandise Pokemon's new "Ichirokachoo" Annoying,
yuppified "theme" CDs, such as "Blues for a Bear Market"

So, there you have it. When you're sliding into home, and your pants are full of latté foam, the advantage goes to ... the Seattle Mariners. But hang in there Starbucks, at the end of the day, 900 million twitching addicts can't be wrong.

Until next time, I'm Nick Bakay reminding you that the numbers never lie.

Humorist Nick Bakay, currently a writer for the CBS sitcom "King of Queens," is a regular contributor to ESPN The Magazine and Page 2. He has a website at

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