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August 12, 2009 at 10:36 PM

Chicago White Sox at Mariners: 08/12/2009 game thread

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Not being prone to overstatement, I’ll dare say this 0-0 contest is one of the most memorable games I’ve ever covered — at least in the regular season.
We’ve already played 13 innings and the game isn’t even 3 1/2 hours old. That’s how well-pitched and well-fielded it’s been.
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The teams have combined for 16 hits so far and there have been eight walks and some errors and wild pitches. So, the scoring chances have been there. But the defense has just been superb when it’s had to be. And the pitchers keep coming through with some big moments, like that Scott Linebrink strikeout on Jose Lopez in the 13th with Franklin Gutierrez at second.
This is Chicago’s longest scoreless game since 1975, the longest ever for Seattle.

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10:16 p.m.: Onward to the 13th inning of this scorless classic after a great diving catch at first base by Mark Kotsay, who lunged for his bag to complete the double play, Had that Rob Johnson liner gotten past Kotsay, the game was over. But we’re still playing.
Chris Jakubauskas is now on to work the 13th. Scott Linebrink is warming up in Chicago’s bullpen and those who follow this team do not think that’s good news for the White Sox.
Gather round the television set, folks. This is one of the best-played games you’re going to see. Not a flawless game, but two teams making all the right plays on the mound and in the field when it matters most.
10:13 p.m.: An injury update on Jack Wilson: he re-aggravated a left hamstring problem. We’ll know more after the game.
Great job of pitching by Sean White to get the Mariners out of the ninth inning. An error by Adrian Beltre had put a runner on second with one out, but White rallied for consecutive groundout by Mark Kotsay and Jayson Nix to keep things scoreless.
Mark Lowe is now on as we head to the 10th inning. The Mariners are 6-4 in extras sp far this season.
Mark Buehrle went eight innings, escaping that bases loaded jam after the Alexi Ramirez error in the eighth on what should have been an inning-ending double-play. Instead, Buehrle had to get Jose Lopez to pop out and then Mike Sweeney to fly out on his 107th and final pitch of the contest.
Buehrle and Felix Hernandez gave us a real treat tonight.
8:53 p.m.: Felix Hernandez saved his best for last, getting the double-play grounder from Gordon Beckham to end the seventh inning after Chicago put runners at the corners with nobody out. The White Sox nearly had the first run of the game on what looked to be a double down the right field line by Scott Podsednik. But first base umpire Marvin Hudson ruled it just foul. Game of inches, this is.
Sean White now in to pitch the eighth. We’re still scoreless. Hernandez was pulled after 105 pitches.
The Mariners got a two-out double by Russell Branyan to put runners at second and third in their half of the seventh. but Jack Hannahan flied out to left.
8:33 p.m.: The Mariners saw their first baserunner reach second when Ichiro doubled just past the first base bag with two out in the sixth inning. But Mark Buehrle got Franklin Gutierrez to line out to shortstop, so it’s on to the seventh in a scoreless game.
Ichiro saved the day in the fifth, throwing a bullet to Rob Johnson on an Alex Rios flyball out. Jason Nix tagged up from third, but Johnson caught the throw, applied the tag and held on to the ball for the out.
Felix Hernandez enters the seventh having thrown 89 pitches. Chicago’s best chance to score might be to take a few and drive him from the game by the eighth.
The way this one is going, by the time we find out what happened to Jack Wilson, the post-game show will be over.
8:06 p.m.: An old-fashioned mound duel brewing here as Felix Hernandez and Mark Buehrle take a scoreless game into the fifth inning. Hernandez has allowed three hits and two walks, Buehrle just one baserunner — Adrian Beltre on a single in the second inning erased by a pickoff move. One thing to watch will be the interplay between Hernandez and catcher Rob Johnson. They seem to be getting signals crossed tonight and this is a game where any mistake could prove crucial.
White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen has already had one confrontation with plate umpire Casey Moser, after Alex Rios was ruled to have gone around on a checked swing in the third inning. Crew chief Angel Hernandez actually came in and defused the situation for once, rather than inflaming it.
7:31 p.m.: Felix Hernandez needed 22 pitches to get out of the second inning, but fanned Jason Nix on an 0-2 pitch with the bases loaded to escape serious trouble. Hernandez had tossed a 1-2-3 first inning, needing only 11 pitches to get through that. So, tough to say which version of Hernandez we’ll see tonight.
Seattle went 1-2-3 against Mark Buehrle in a scoreless first inning.
7:11 p.m.: The roof is open tonight, though the crowd still appears a bit sparse. Texas has already won its game and the Red Sox are about to win theirs. Oh yeah, the Rays lost again, to the Angels. The Mariners can fall double-digits back of Los Angeles if they fail to win here tonight with Felix Hernandez on the mound.
Herandez hasn’t been himself the past three outings. Let’s see how he does tonight.
The lineups:
WHITE SOX (58-56)
CF Scott Podsednik
3B Gordon Beckham
RF Alex Rios
DH Jim Thome
LF Carlos Quentin
C A.J. Pierzynski
SS Alexi Ramirez
1B Mark Kotsay
2B Jason Nix
LHP Mark Buehrle
MARINERS (59-54)
RF Ichiro
CF Franklin Gutierrez
2B Jose Lopez
DH Mike Sweeney
3B Adrian Beltre
1B Russell Branyan
SS Jack Wilson
C Rob Johnson
LF Ryan Langerhans
RHP Felix Hernandez



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