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May 6, 2007 at 10:07 AM

Mariners vs. Yankees, Game 3

Another fine outing was being turned in by Jarrod Washburn, until he couldn’t get the final out of the fifth inning. He now trails 2-0 heading into the sixth after the Yankees strung together a bunch of two-out hits in the fifth. Washburn had allowed only three hits through the first 4 2/3 innings of a scoreless tie, mostly of the soft variety. One of those hits came on a Josh Phelps pop up in that fifth that dropped between three Seattle fielders in shallow center. Washburn had been doing what he’d done throughout the past three weeks, letting opposing hitters put the ball in-play with soft contact.
But his undoing in that fifth came when he walked Johnny Damon with two out. Heading into that at-bat, his pitch count was in the low 80s and he seemed a sure bet to go at least six innings, if not seven. But after Damon’s walk, Derek Jeter and Bobby Abreu lashed RBI singles on the hardest balls the Yankees have hit all afternoon.
As a consequence, Washburn now trails and his pitch-count is up at 98, making it unlikely he’ll go six if indeed he’s brought out for another frame. On the other side of the equation, Seattle has done nothing against Yankees emergency starter Darrell Rasner, who needed only 62 pitches to get through five innings. Lots of quick swinging into outs. The Mariners have hit the ball hard at times, but often right at opposing fielders. Where have we seen that before?
One more note on the inning. You saw Yankees baserunner Phelps run over Kenji Johjima as he stood at home waiting to take a throw from the outfield. Phelps even seemed to go out of his way to flatten the catcher. It should be noted that Phelps only plays against lefties and hasn’t seen much big-league action the past three years. Probably hasn’t been in those situations much. But a more interesting thing for me is, Phelps came up through the minors as a catcher. I mean, is there no “code” between these guys?
Anyhow, Washburn, to his credit, got some revenge by plunking Phelps on the back in the sixth inning. Yes, Washburn did come back out for the sixth, but the bases are now loaded with one out and he’s done. Ralu Ibanez dropped a ball in left, Washburn hit Phelps and Willie Bloomquist just made a lunging attempt at a blooped ball but couldn’t come up with it. Not Washburn’s lucky day. Chris Reitsma nearly got out of the inning with a double-play ball hit to Richie Sexson at first base. But Sexson slipped and fell and barely got the one out, allowing a run to score for a 3-0 New York lead.
A last-minute lineup change for the Mariners as Jose Lopez is scratched and Willie Bloomquist inserted in his place, batting ninth. Lopez apparently bruised his ankle during a play at first base in yesterday’s game. Sean Green arrived in town just after 3 a.m. to take Julio Mateo’s bullpen spot. Mateo was booked on a charge of third degree assault last night, a Class A misdemeanor. We’re trying to figure out exactly where he is right now.
Here are the lineups:
CF Johnny Damon
SS Derek Jeter
RF Bobby Abreu
3B Alex Rodriguez
DH Jason Giambi
LF Hideki Matsui
1B Josh Phelps
2B Miguel Cairo
C Wil Nieves
RHP Darrell Rasner
CF Ichiro
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Jose Vidro
LF Raul Ibanez
1B Richie Sexson
RF Jose Guillen
C Kenji Johjima
SS Yuniesky Betancourt
2B Willie Bloomquist
LHP Jarrod Washburn



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