“The Ancient Mariner” Returns to Safeco Field
Diego Segui, who threw out the very first pitch in Mariner history, returns to the mound before Saturday night’s game as part of the Mariners 35th Anniversary celebration.
On April 6, 1977, Segui pitched in front of a crowd of over 57,000 at the Kingdome for the Seattle Mariners inaugural game vs. the California Angels. Although, this would not be the first time he pitched as a Major Leaguer in Seattle, or even the first time he would throw across the plate on a Seattle baseball team’s inaugural opening day.
Segui was a relief pitcher for the Seattle Pilots, a team that played all of one season in Seattle in 1969. The Pilots moved to Milwaukee in 1970 and became the Brewers, while Seattle would have to wait out a seven-year itch for Major League baseball to return to the city.
Segui pitched in the first game ever played by each Seattle franchise, appearing in relief in the Pilots 4-3 win over the Angels on April 8, 1969, and is the only man to have played for both of Seattle’s Major League teams.
He was chosen by teammates as the MVP of the Seattle Pilots in 1969 after going 12-6, pitching mostly out of the bullpen, recording 12 saves, 113 strikeouts and a 3.35 ERA (53 ER, 142.1 IP). As a Mariner he set an early club record by striking out 10 Red Sox in a game. Segui ended his 16-year Major League career in a Mariners uniform in 1977.
Will fans see his famous forkball when he makes his appearance at Safeco Field on Saturday?
- Krista Staudinger