Through five innings Sunday, the Mariners looked every bit like a team that was still dragging after their trip to Japan. With regulars back in the lineup, they had been blanked on three hits by Kansas City, with six strikeouts.
And then, in the sixth inning, boom, they woke up. The first eight batters got on base, and six of them scored — three coming on a home run by Miguel Olivo, which was followed by a solo homer from Kyle Seager. In all, the Mariners had 12 hits in their 6-4 win, with Munenori Kawasaki getting three of them.
“We’re a little bit tired still, but we’ll be better tomorrow,” Olivo said. “In that inning, we all woke up and we started to hit. We were still feeling like we were on Japanese time. I think tomorrow it’ll pass, hopefully. To me, it still feels like early morning.
Manager Eric Wedge said, “These guys are still working their way back, but it’s nice to see them break out the way they did. I think everyone is still a little bit fuzzy. But they were able to get through the workout yesterday, and they’re a little better today, and I anticipate them being even a little bit better tomorrow.”
Four players, however, were sent home early today with illness — Dustin Ackley (for the second day in a row), Michael Saunders, Carlos Peguero and George Sherrill.
“It is a concern, but there’s not much you can do about it,” Wedge said. “If they show up sick, the first thing we do is give them their meds and get them out of here. Tell them to rest and get off their feet. Hopefully, they don’t lose too much weight. It’s the second day in a row we had to send Ackley home. I’m hoping he’ll be ready to go tomorrow. We still probably won’t be able to play him tomorrow because he’s lost some weight.
“You hope it doesn’t keep moving down the line, but there’s not much you can do about it.”