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April 25, 2009 at 8:21 PM

Seattle Mariners at Los Angeles Angels: 04/25 game thread

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By the way, we’re told Carlos Silva left the game with a mild stiff right shoulder.
Seattle has a 9-3 lead as we head to the bottom of the seventh, courtesy of some timely hitting in the top of the frame. Ichiro led off with a single to right, followed by an Endy Chavez walk and an RBI single to right by Ken Griffey Jr. Adrian Beltre drove home another run with a single to center and Russell Branyan then shattered something like his fourth maple bat of the season on an RBI hit to right.
Caught up with the Mariners’ version of Jeffrey Maier as he was being escorted out of Angel Stadium by security. Turns out, this is no Mariners “hand of God” story, since John Loef, 19, a kineseology student at Santa Monica Jr. College, is actually an Arizona Diamondbacks fan from Westchester, Calif.
Hear some of what he had to say about getting ejected right here in this video.

His buddy’s birthday was today and he and some pals brought him to the game. Loef told them he’d do the best he could to dress the part of an M’s fan, so he donned his Mariners cap from his old Little League team and wore a dark blue sweatshirt — the only one he could find.
“He told me we were going to be in the front row, so I just grabbed my glove from the car,” he said. “I didn’t tell him I was going to wear my Seattle stuff. All week long, he said ‘You’ve got Angels stuff, you’ve got Angels stuff?’ And I said to myself ‘Oh, I’ve got to cover it, I’ve got to cover it (up).’ He shows up at my house today and this is the closest thing I had to a Mariners’ jersey. And my Little League hat from like ’98 or something.”
There was a reason for him doing this, other than torturing his buddy.
“My main thing I was doing is that I always know that on road games, the road players will tend to throw balls into the stands if they see one of their road fans.”
He said he actually reads this blog, so there you go. He’s studying to be an athletic trainer or therapist. Guess he can rule the Angels out.
Anyhow, he was stunned that he was thrown out. He said he told security guards that MLB had the right to review the play for fan interference, which the umpires did moments later (not saying they did it because of him, only that was the timing). So, Loef was allowed to remain in place while the home run ball he appeared to steal from Gary Matthews Jr. was reviewed.
Later, he was escorted out. And no, his cellphone didn’t stop ringing the whole time we were speaking. His friends, in true buddy fashion, naturally stayed inside to watch the game and did not accompany him outside.
“This is the one time I didn’t have to do the driving,” he said. “So, I carpooled down here and now I’m going to have to wait out here by their car all nine innings. I’ll probably walk over to Hooters and watch the game.”
Loef says he didn’t realize that fan interference meant an automatic ejection from the ballpark.
“I remember Bartman getting kicked out of his game because I’m a Cubs fan and they were going to kill him,” he said. “I just figured, I’m never going to get another chance to catch a ball like this, front row at Angel Stadium, so I might as well make the best of it.”
By the way, what team isn’t this guy a fan of?
8:01 p.m.: The Mariners will take a 6-3 lead into the seventh inning after Miguel Batista relieved Carlos Silva in the sixth and got the side 1-2-3. Silva threw 72 pitches over five innings in one of his lesser performances this season, but is in line for a rare win.
7:15 p.m.:Carlos Silva gave up a pair of runs by hitting an ensuing batter and yielding singles to Chone Figgins and Maicer Izturis. But the M’s got them back in the fourth on a Wladimir Balentien home run and an RBI double by Yuniesky Betancourt. So, it’s now a 5-2 lead for the Mariners.
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6:23 p.m.: Carlos Silva is through the first two innings on just 22 pitches. No…don’t even think about it. Anyhow, that’s one strikeout, four flyballs and an infield popout. The Mariners have had their hits against Anthony Ortega the first two innings and could easily be up by more than 3-0. They’ll have to start taking advantage at times when Russell Branyan isn’t due up.
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6:23 p.m.: You can see the late-afternoon shadows still present as Ichiro steps in to face Angels rookie pitcher Anthony Ortega in his major league debut. And Ortega was seeing plenty of shadows in that first inning — more like hauntings of things to come. Russell Branyan took him deep for a three-run mammoth blast to right center that landed five rows deep in the bleachers, which are set very far back from the field and up high too.
So, it’s a 3-0 lead for Carlos Silva as he takes the mound. Dare I say it? Silva has just one win over the last calendar year or so. Ortega looked shaky out there, yielding a leadoff single to right by Ichiro. The M’s helped Ortega by giving him a needless out when Endy Chavez sacrificed Ichiro to second. What’s up with that? Make the kid throw strikes! Ortega walked Ken Griffey Jr., then got an ugly-looking popout on Adrian Beltre before Branyan did what he does best.

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