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July 2, 2011 at 10:55 PM

M’s find a new way to lose

Well, as has been detailed quite a bit by now, the Mariners found a new way to lose tonight, the only run reaching base via a three-ball walk and then coming around to score.
That’s the obvious thing to remember about this game since basically nothing else happened. I printed the umpire statement below, and the rest of the pertinent information is here in the game story.
Mariner manager Eric Wedge is quoted in that story saying he thought something was amiss but figured he was the one in the wrong since no one else reacted as if anything was wrong. He also said that there’s no recourse to correct it once the game continues.
“Nothing you can do about it now,” he said. “You’ve got to do it before the next pitch is thrown, got to go out there and do something. But it’s, that’s someitng that’s never happened before. But that’s what makes it so unusual, having conversation watching the game, working the ball game, literally there was no reaction out there from anybody, so I just felt like I must have missed it.”
As noted earlier, and included in the game story, pitcher Doug Fister and catcher Josh Bard each said they simply didn’t notice it at the time.
Wedge acknowledged the bench should have figured it out.
“Ultimately it’s our job to watch the game,” he said. “It’s a mistake. A 1-0 ball game, obviously it means a great deal. But it still doesn’t change the fact that we’ve got to score a run to win.”
Indeed, that’s obviously the bigger longterm story here, that the Mariners continue to struggle to score runs, even against such relatively nondescript pitchers as the Padres threw at the Mariners tonight, a crew led by starter Cory Luebke, a converted reliever making just his second start of the year. He allowed just two hits in six innings.
“You never want to take away from a kid like him,” Bard said. “He threw the ball good. But we knew coming into it that he was going to throw a lot of fastballs and we didn’t do a good job of hitting them. It’s extremely frustrating. We’ve got to score runs and find a way somehow, someway, and quit waiting around for everybody, somebody else to do it. Someone’s got to do it.”
Seattle really only had three chances to score. Greg Halman doubled in the second but was left stranded there when Jack Cust struck out and Josh Bard grounded out. He later singled in the fifth but an out later, was thrown out trying to steal second. Wedge said he momentarily hesitated, which cost him the step he needed to get the steal.
Seattle had another chance in the seventh when Brendan Ryan got to third with one out. But Justin Smoak, whose average has fallen to .242 thanks to a 1-27 slump, struck out and Halman then popped out. Smoak’s might have been the key at-bat, though he’s hardly the only one to blame on a night when the Mariners got just two hits.
Fister obviously again was sensational, and Wedge said he sent him back out for the ninth hoping he could get a win, or at least not take the loss. “He deserved that opportunity,” Wedge said.
But nothing went right for the Mariners on this night.
And as noted earlier, this is becoming a tough homestand for the Mariners, now 3-5 against Florida, the Braves and the Padres. After Sunday, Seattle will play 16 of its next 20 on the road, a stretch that looms as make-or-break for the season. Saturday night wasn’t a real good omen.

Comments | Topics: Brendan Ryan

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