It is becoming harder to argue with Marianne Love’s claim that Sandpoint’s connections extend around the world.
Latest case in point: Nick Hagadone.
Marianne and hubby, Bill, were on full alert for the Seattle Mariners’ relief pitcher during a recent visit to the M’s Arizona spring training home: Peoria Stadium. First, they unwittingly tried to enter an area reserved for staff and guests. And got shooed away. Later, Marianne and Bill approached a tall player - 6-foot-5, 229 pounds, to be exact - on the practice field and asked directions to Nick.
They’d hit paydirt. It was Nick, a promising pitcher before he fractured his left throwing arm. The 31-year-old Sandpoint native signed a Minor League contract with the Mariners Jan. 31.
In her Slight Detour blog, Marianne writes: “We were thrilled to meet this polite son of Mike and Alison, whom I’d known as students at Sandpoint High School.”
Nick pitched for Cleveland from 2011 to 2015 before requiring surgery to fix his pitching arm. He took 2016 off to heal. According to Outside Pitch Sports Network, Nick’s chances of making the Mariners to start the regular season aren’t good. But he’s a lefthanded relief specialist, something Seattle needs.
Keep your fingers crossed. More here.