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March 8, 2012 at 3:58 PM

Mariners rout Cubs 10-3 behind Ackley home run and solid Millwood pitching

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Mariners manager Eric Wedge just got done talking on the field after his Mariners demolished the Chicago Cubs 10-3 this afternoon.
Dustin Ackley hit a three-run homer off Carlos Marmol in a four-run Seattle fifth that erased a 1-0 deficit. Guillermo Quiroz added a home run in the ninth for a Mariners team that allowed only one earned run on the day.
Kevin Millwood allowed that run on a solo homer by Alfonso Soriano, but otherwise looked pretty strong. He needed just three pitches to get out of the third inning.
Wedge was still awaiting word on injured catcher Adam Moore and how long he’ll be out. But it’s going to be for a considerable length of time.
“It’s tough for the kid,” Wedge said. “He’s just going to have to keep his chin up and fight through it again. It’s been some tough luck the last couple of years. I do think that we’ll get him back sooner, rather than later, though.”
Sooner than missing the entire season in any event. But it could be a while.
“He’s going to lose the srping at least,” Wedge said. “When he does get healthy, he’s going to have to continue to play. That’s after he missed so much time last year, so, we’ll just have to take it as it comes.”

Anyhow, on to today’s games, Wedge liked what he saw both from Millwood and from Hector Noesi, who allowed just a run in three innings of a B-game against the Rockies.
Wedge said Millwood’s third inning was his best of the spring. Millwood agreed with that when we spoke to him in the clubhouse after his three innings were up.
“That’s what I like,” Millwood said of the three-pitch third. “I’d rather have guys swing at the first pitch and make outs, for no other reason than it keeps you in the game longer.”
Millwood had been working through some mechanical issues in the innings prior. So, even though he had two of his three strikeouts in the second inning, he felt he was out there a little longer than he’d have wanted.
But things came together in the third, when he got a flyout and two groundouts to the right side before anyone could really break a sweat.
The Mariners needed to see that today from both Millwood and Noesi. Things are a little uncertain in the rotation because of Hisashi Iwakuma’s abbreviated outings so it had to be reassuring to see that there is some depth after Felix Hernandez and Jason Vargas. We won’t read too much into one outing, but Millwood said he felt better and stronger and that’s always a good sign.

Comments | Topics: Hisashi Iwakuma


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