Wedding bliss part of Halama’s Game 6 mood

  • RONALD BLUM / Associated Press
  • Monday, October 16, 2000 9:00pm
  • Sports


Associated Press

NEW YORK – John Halama has been in New York for days, back home for his sister’s wedding.

Orlando Hernandez and the Yankees would like to give Halama and his Mariners teammates the rest of the winter off.

“I had to be here, but my heart was in Seattle,” Halama said Monday, a day before starting Game 6 of the AL championship series and trying to push New York to a seventh game.

Barbara Halama got married Saturday, so her brother took a red-eye flight after Game 3 Friday night. He couldn’t watch Game 4 because of the wedding.

“Someone had a Walkman and kept me updated, inning by inning, batter and everything,” Halama said.

He felt he had to miss the two games at Safeco Field. Blood over batterymates. His sister was in the stands at Shea Stadium – along with 69 other family and friends – two years ago when he made his first major league start in New York.

“My sister doesn’t plan on getting married again,” he said.

The Brooklynite, acquired by Seattle from Houston in the Randy Johnson trade, kept to his normal throwing routine, going out to a city park to toss a ball with his brother. Other than that, he kept a low profile, not wanting to get into the faces of Yankees’ fans in Bay Ridge.

“I didn’t walk around the neighborhood,” he said.

Halama, a 28-year-old left-hander, blanked the Yankees for six innings, leaving with a 1-0 lead, but Seattle’s bullpen got blasted in a 7-1 loss in Game 2.

Hernandez wound up getting the win, allowing one run and six hits in eight innings. He is 7-0 with a 1.22 ERA in a postseason career that has become more storied than his defection from Cuba three years ago.

He’s the man of a million motions.

Words, however, are scarce.

“I always feel pressure,” he said Sunday night. “What I don’t have is fear.”

That, according to Halama, is easy for Hernandez say.

“El Duque probably says he has no fear because he’s back at home, and he has had so much postseason experience,” Halama said. “There’s almost always going to be a nerve factor with myself. The fans will not be cheering for me, except for the limited family I have. I’m sure his comments would be different is he was pitching in Seattle.”

With his team trailing 3-2 in the series and one loss from elimination, Mariners manager Lou Piniella promised to make major lineup changes.

“Hernandez has never been beaten in postseason. We realize it,” he said. “But we’re going to stack up our lineup left-handed, make it as tough on his as possible.”

Yankees manager Joe Torre wasn’t planing major moves to adjust to Halama.

“I’d like to believe momentum is as good as your starting pitcher,” he said. “I’m obviously not knocking John Halama. I feel good about our guy.”

Two years ago, Barbara Halama talked about her brother, before his first start for Houston in New York.

“He grew up wanting to play for the Mets,” she said. “It was his dream to pitch at Shea Stadium.”

With a win today, he might get a chance to pitch at Shea Stadium once again. Against the Mets. In the World Series.

Copyright ©2000 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Talk to us

More in Sports

Seattle Seahawks linebacker Jordyn Brooks (56) and safety Jamal Adams (33) talk during NFL football practice, Tuesday, June 6, 2023, at the team's facilities in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Lindsey Wasson)
5 things to watch during Seahawks’ mandatory minicamp

The camp is only three days long, but some clarity could arise on a number of issues.

Empty seats are shown at Husky Stadium during an NCAA college football game between Washington and Oregon State, Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020, in Seattle. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, fans were not permitted to attend the game. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
State football title games moving to Husky Stadium for ’23 season

The WIAA announced Tuesday a one-year agreement with the University of Washington to host the games for the upcoming season.

Giants pitcher Ryan Walker, an Arlington High School graduate, works against the Pirates during the sixth inning of a game on May 30 in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Arlington graduate Walker reaches big leagues with Giants

The WSU alum was drafted in 2018 and has since climbed the minor-league ladder until his promotion to the majors on May 21.

Lake Stevens’ Cole Becker celebrates a touchdown with teammates after putting his team up against Kennedy Catholic in the WIAA 4A State Football Championship game Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022, at Mount Tahoma Stadium in Tacoma, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
2022-23 Herald Athletic Cup: Lake Stevens captures 1st place

The Vikings win the competition, which rewards local high schools for their overall athletic success, for the second straight year.

Spring 2023 All-Wesco teams

Note: All-Wesco teams are chosen by the league’s coaches. For any misspellings… Continue reading

AquaSox bullpen falters in 9th in loss to Canadians

Everett carries a two-run lead into the final inning, but a late grand slam lifts Vancouver to an 8-5 win.

San Diego Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr., right, gets up after safely steals second base as Seattle Mariners shortstop J.P. Crawford looks on during the fourth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, June 7, 2023, in San Diego. Tatis Jr. advanced to third on the throwing error by catcher Cal Raleigh. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Kirby struggles, Mariners fall to Padres to split short series

The young righty gives up five runs and 11 hits in a season-low 3.2 innings as Seattle loses 10-3.

Everett Public Schools athletes of the year Jackson's Sylas Williams (left) and Cascade's Abby Surowiec (right) with Superintendent Ian Saltzman at the Everett Public Schools athletics awards banquet Thursday, June 1, 2023. (Photo courtesy of Everett Public Schools)
Student-athletes honored at Everett Public Schools banquet

Jackson’s Sylas Williams and Cascade’s Abby Surowiec were named the athletes of the year at the annual awards ceremony.

Schaeffer dominant in debut, AquaSox blank Canadians

The 2022 Seattle Mariners draft pick strikes out 10 in his first start after being promoted as Everett wins 2-0.

Most Read