Bit of a wild seventh inning there in which the Mariners regained a 5-4 lead on a two-out double by Chone Figgins that scored Brendan Ryan from first base. That’s three hits for Figgins today.
Then came the bottom of the inning, when the Tigers got runners to second and third with one out, with help from a passed ball by Miguel Olivo. But Lucas Luetge managed to get a groundout to third from Andy Dirks with the runners holding their ground.
Luetge then fell behind 3-1 to Brennan Boesch and was fortunate to get him to swing and miss on a breaking ball in the dirt blocked by Olivo. Could have been the game there had Luetge walked the bases loaded for Miguel Cabrera.
Instead, Luetge got a groundout on the next pitch and here we are. It’ll be Tom Wilhelmsen working the eighth.
11:55 a.m.: We’re all tied up 4-4 after the Tigers scored three on Hector Noesi in the sixth inning before he could muster a single out. Andy Dirks led off with a triple to right center and scored on a singe to right by Brennan Boesch.
The M’s got Charlie Furbush up in the bullpen, but Miguel Cabrera was up next and hit the two-run dinger to left that tied it.
Again, those calling on Eric Wedge for not getting Noesi out of there, it all happened within a span of a few batters. You wouldn’t want Cabrera facing Furbush anyhow because Cabrera destroys left-handers. In hindsight, there could be an argument for getting a right-handed reliever up between innings. But remember, Noesi had allowed just two singles all game before the sixth and the first one didn’t happen until there was one out in the fifth.
Still, the one tell that I did see was a bunch of fly balls being caught in the outfield near the warning track today. And with the middle of that Detroit order coming up, I won’t immediately dismiss the argument the M’s might have gotten a right-hander up to face Cabrera in that situation. Cabrera didn’t homer by much — his ball carrying just beyond the wall.
But it was enough. The Mariners have to wake up on offense. They’ve been asleep the past few innings.
11:32 a.m: Detroit finally managed a hit off Hector Noesi in the fifth when Don kelley singled with one out. An ensuing glove error by Alex Liddi and a long single by Ryan Raburn got a run home to make it a 4-1 game.
But Noesi escaped big-time with a double-play grounder off the bat of Gerald Laird.
11:10 a.m.: Hide the children and lock your doors. Miguel Olivo just hit one out to left field off Rick Porcello to make it a 4-0 game in the fourth inning. Olivo goes deep the same day Chone Figgins is 2-for-2 so far with a pair of singles.
Plagues and locusts sure to follow.
11:04 a.m.: Three pretty good innings from Hector Noesi, who has allowed just one walk and no hits, though that should have been an infield single by Gerald Laird in the third inning. The umpire at first base botched the call. Other than that, it’s still 3-0 for Seattle. Chone Figgins is 2-for-2 and reached second with none out in the third, only to be stranded there.
The M’s can’t do that. Detroit has too much firepower, despite offensive struggles. Three runs is not enough.
10:19 a.m.: Those of you writing in to demand the benching of Justin Smoak? You’re all morons! Ha, ha, just kidding. But Smoak just did what the Mariners have been waiting to see from their cleanup hitter, launching a three-run bomb over the right field wall off Rick Porcello to make it 3-0 after a half-inning of play.
Chone Figgins, officially under-the-gun, led off with a single, while Dustin Ackley followed with the same. One out later, Smoak snapped an 0-for-15 drought with his fifth home run in eight games here at Comerica Park. The Tigers are looking more like a kitty cat on the side of the road after a meet-up with a distracted bus driver.
Like I said, no mound duels today. Last offense still standing wins.
10:00 a.m.: They are celebrating Math Day here at Comerica Park. Not sure whether I get holiday pay for that, but my Canadian math skills do tell me that one more win by the Mariners will give them a series sweep here.
My oddsmaking skills, however, are telling me the likelihood of Hector Noesi holding down this Detroit Tigers lineup are only slightly better than me getting time-and-a-half for working Math Day while all of you are out barbecueing.
In other words, the Mariners had best be swinging the bats once again because a mound duel seems unlikely.
As usual, follow along here, or get high comedey on my @gbakermariners Twitter feed.
LF Chone Figgins
2B Dustin Ackley
1B Justin Smoak
DH Jesus Montero
3B Alex Liddi
CF Michael Saunders
C Miguel Olivo
SS Brendan Ryan
RHP Hector Noesi
DH Andy Dirks
RF Brennan Boesch
3B Miguel Cabrera
1B Prince Fielder
LF Delmon Young
CF Don Kelly
SS Jhonny Peralta
2B Ryan Raburn
C Gerald Laird
RHP Rick Porcello