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July 3, 2010 at 4:04 PM

UPDATED POST-GAME: Mariners vs. Tigers, July 3: M’s lose, 6-1

The Mariners are concerned enough about Jason Vargas’s mounting innings — he’s at 100 2/3 right now, putting him right on pace for about 200 — that they might have him skip his final start before the All-Star break.
The M’s brain trust will huddle in the next day or two to discuss several scenarios as they prepare for Erik Bedard’s return to the rotation on Tuesday. They could shut down Vargas, Doug Fister, or both prior to the All-Star break in hopes of having both come back strong in the second half. Remember, Ryan Rowland-Smith had one of his best outings of the season in his last start against the Yankees, so he could remain in the rotation. Vargas and Fister each are scheduled for just one more start before the break.
Wakamatsu said he thought Vargas threw well early — up until his two-out walk to Miguel Cabrera in the fourth that was pretty much the beginning of the end.
“Up to then, he threw the ball exceptional,” Wakamatsu said. “Exactly the way he has been throwing it. He was cruising along, and his pitch count got up, and you start to think maybe some of that has to do with fatigue. We will definitely talk about that in next couple of days.”
Vargas doesn’t believe that fatigue is an issue, however.
“I feel fine,” he said. “I’ve thrown 100 innings before combined between the minor leagues and major leagues. I think innings are innings. We’ve still got a long way to go, so I better be OK.
“I felt like I was throwing the ball all right. They got some hits that got through. We had some things not go right for us. A couple of those things don’t happen, and it’s a different ball game. But that’s the way it played it out.”
“I actually feel great. It’s just a matter of being able to withstand a run that you were on. I threw the ball well for a good portion of the season. Tonight was just one of those nights where it went their way instead of mine.”


*****
M’s drop third straight, 6-1, to Tigers. They were simply overmatched by Justin Verlander. There’s no comparising between these two lineups.
TIGERS EIGHTH:David Pauley gives up a leadoff double to the ever-pesky Brandon Inge but retires the next three. Jose Valverde and his 0.53 ERA are coming into the game. 6-1 Tigers.
MARINERS SEVENTH:M’s finally score a run off Verlander on Michael Saunders’ infield single, but with the bases loaded, Chone Figgins grounds out to end the threat. 6-1 Tigers.
TIGERS FIFTH: The Tigers bust it open with four runs and knock out Vargas. With one out, he gave up four consecutive hits, including back-to-back doubles by Ryan Raburn and Magglio Ordonez. Brian Sweeney replaced Vargas and gave up an RBI single to Carlos Guillen and a run-scoring ground out by Brandon Inge. The Tigers can move into a first-place tie with Minnesota with a win. And the way Verlander is pitching, I like their chances. 6-0 Tigers.
TIGERS FOURTH: The Tigers break through with two runs, all with two outs. A walk to Cabrera and singles by Boesch and Guillen (the latter an infield hit to shortstop) loaded the bases, and Brandon Inge, on a 2-2 pitch, grounded a singled past a diving Jack Wilson for two runs. 2-0 Tigers.
MARINERS FOURTH: M’s get runners on second and third with two outs, but Verlander fans Casey Kotchman on three pitches, getting him to chase a high hard one for strike three. Still 0-0.
MARINERS THIRD:Apparently, Verlander is going to strike out the side in odd innings only. Saunders, Wilson and, again, Ichiro go down. Ichiro came in hitting .378 (14-for-37) against Verlander, with five strikeouts. Make that seven now. 0-0.
TIGERS SECOND: Jason Vargas will not throw his first career no-hitter, as Miguel Cabrera — after missing the last three games against Seattle — leads off with a double. Actually, that ball probably should have been caught, but Gutierrez seemed to have trouble tracking it, and he couldn’t come up with it on a late dive. But some nice Vargas pitching after that to retire the next three without Cabrera scoring. 0-0.
MARINERS SECOND: Justin Verlander will not throw his second career no-hitter, as Casey Kotchman gets a two-out single. But he dies there. 0-0.
TIGERS FIRST:He didn’t do it in quite the dominant fashion as Verlander, but Jason Vargas puts the Tigers down in order — two groundouts and a harmless fly. 0-0.
MARINERS FIRST:Well, I think we can safely say Verlander is on today. He struck out Ichiro. He struck out Figgins. He struck out Bradley. He’s on pace for 27 strikeouts. 0-0.
M’s have a tough task tonight against Justin Verlander, but they’ve beat him twice already this year (0-2, 5.02). Lifetime, he is 6-5, 3.67 vs. Seattle.

Comments | Topics: Chone Figgins

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