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July 8, 2010 at 6:39 PM

Game thread, Mariners vs. Yankees, July 8: Yankees win, 3-1

M’s lose 3-1 as the Yankees score two in the ninth off David Aardsma to break a 1-1 tie. Alex Rodriguez’s two-out, two-run single to right was the decisive blow. The M’s have now lost all four on this homestand, and seven of eight overall.
YANKEES EIGHTH:Wakamatsu elects to send Vargas back out for the eighth despite 100 pitches. But after walking A-Rod and giving up hit to Cano, Sweeney replaced him. His undoing was a wild pitch on a ball in the dirt that allowed A-Rod to go to third, where he scored when Posada grounded into a double play. 1-1.
MARINERS SIXTH: The M’s finally get a run, but they may rue not getting more, with a golden opportunity to do so. After singles by Josh Wilson and Saunders put men on first and second, Ichiro dropped down a bunt. Pettitte fielded and threw wildly to first, with Wilson scoring and runners ending up on second and third, with no out. As they have done so many times, the M’s did nothing with the gift. Figgins grounded out to third, runners holding. After an intentional walk to Gutierrez, both Branyan and Lopez struck out. 1-0 Mariners.
YANKEES SIXTH:Vargas is doing a great job of skating out of trouble, and this time he got a big assist from Franklin Gutierrez. With a runner on first, Gutierrez ran down a long drive by Curtis Granderson and snared it on the warning track. Gardner struck out — for the third time — to end the inning. 0-0.
MARINERS FIFTH:Very quick and easy inning for Pettitte, who has allowed two hits and thrown 56 pitches through five. 0-0.
YANKEES FIFTH: A-Rod strands another runner — that’s four — with a fly out to end the fifthwith Swisher on first. Swisher, named to the All-Star team today, has celebrated by going 3-for-3. Vargas has 74 pitches through five. 0-0.
MARINERS FOURTH:Figgins draws a leadoff walk for the first Seattle baserunner since his single in the first (the one on which Ichiro was thrown out at third). Figgins is then promptly erased by a Gutierrez double-play ball, and Branyan strikes out. 0-0.
YANKEES FOURTH:Yankees get two singles with one out — they now have six hits — but Vargas escapes nicely again, striking out Gardner for the second time and getting Pena to fly out. 0-0.
MARINERS THIRD: Pettitte, who struck out the last two in the second, fans the first two in the third (Josh Wilson and Michael Saunders), before Ichiro grounded out. 0-0.
YANKEES THIRD:Mariner fans were ecstatic when A-Rod popped up with two men aboard to end the third. He has now stranded three runners in three innings. 0-0.
MARINERS SECOND: Pettitte puts the Mariners down in quick 1-2-3 fashion, striking out Kotchman and Bard (the latter looking). Andy Pettitte enters the game with a 239-137 record — a .636 win percentage (18-9 postseason). Hall of Famer? I’d have to look closer. 0-0.
YANKEES SECOND:Vargas gives up a two-out single to Curtis Granderson, but strikes out Brett Gardner to end the inning. 0-0.
MARINERS FIRST:Like the Yankees, the M’s had a promising inning fizzle out. Ichiro led off with a patented infield single to short, and Figgins laced a single to left. But Ichiro, trying to go first to third, was gunned down at third by Brett Gardner. Gutierrez hit into a force, and Branyan fouled out. 0-0.
YANKEES FIRST:Jason Vargas pitches out of a first-and-second, no-out jam — with Teixeira, A-Rod and Cano coming up. Teixeira hit into a well-turned 6-4-3 double play (Josh Wilson atoning for an earlier error, when he booted a Jeter grounder), and then A-Rod flying out to right. A-Rod was booed, but I didn’t detect as much venom as usual. 0-0.
Alex Rodriguez, who will DH tonight for the Yankees, enters the four-game series with 597 homers. He wouldn’t reach 600 in Seattle, would he? Would he?
Milton Bradley (sore knee) is out of the lineup again, but manager Don Wakamatsu said he could play tomorrow. Franklin Gutierrez, who is 5-for-12 with a home run in his career off Andy Pettitte, is hitting third, while Russ Branyan (0-for-6 with five strikeouts off Pettitte) is at cleanup. Jack Wilson (5-for-23 vs. Pettitte) gets a day off, and Josh Wilson (5-for-10) gets the start at shortstop. The team’s best career numbers vs. Pettitte are owned (as they are against many pitchers) by Ichiro (14-for-36, .389, with a double and five RBI).
Wakamatsu said Erik Bedard will play catch Saturday, and if it goes well, he’ll throw a bullpen session on Sunday. Bedard had been scheduled to start for the Mariners last Tuesday against the Royals and Sunday against the Yankees, but had to be scratched when he developed stiffness and soreness in his left shoulder.
The Mariners have lost six out of seven since taking the first two games of a three-game series at Yankee Stadium behind complete games from Cliff Lee and Felix Hernandez. Those two are scheduled to work Friday and Saturday — provided Lee is still a Mariner tomorrow. These days, you never know.



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