The Mariners dodged another huge bullet in the eighth inning and still lead 4-2 as we head to the ninth. Tom Wilhelmsen took over for Kevin Millwood to start the eighth and yielded a pair of singles. Lucas Luetge came in with one out and fanned Curtis Granderson, but Steve Delabar walked the bases loaded and Charlie Furbush then walked Robinson Cano to force in a run.
Things were getting tight but Furbush fanned Mark Teixeira to end the inning.
Great day by Millwood, who allowed three hits over seven innings. He walked four guys but — most importantly — got the big outs when needed and gave team shot to win by avoiding the one big inning.
11:57 a.m.: Kevin Millwood has a 4-1 lead after six innings, using two huge double-plays off Derek Jeter’s bat to escape big innings. And then, after Yankees got on board in the fifth, Casper Wells hit a two-run homer to right field in the sixth to restore a comfort zone for his pitcher.
Millwood was in huge trouble in the fifth, his lead down to just a run after he walked Russell Martin with the bases loaded. But then Jeter’s double-play grounder bailed him out and Wells has positioned the M’s to maybe steal a win here in the series finale.
11:06 a.m.: The Smoakamotive rides again! Justin Smoak ends no-hitter for Andy Pettite with two out in fourth inning, driving a 1-1 pitch over the left field wall for a two-run homer to give Seattle a 2-0 lead. Jesus Montero did a nice job of working a walk in the prior plate appearance to keep the inning alive.
10:57 a.m.: We’re still scoreless three innings in after Kevin Millwood got Derek Jeter to ground into a 5-4-3 double play with two on and the count full to end the third. Millwood yielded the only hit of the game so far, an Eric Chavez double, then walked Russell Martin with one out before getting Jeter.
Andy Pettitte has had some early location and command issues, walking a pair of batters. But he’s minimized the damage and has gotten six outs via grounders and another on a strikeout. Only two hard hit balls off him to-date, a flyout and a Jesus Montero lineout.
10:24 a.m.: Nice 1-2-3 inning by Kevin Millwood, who fans Derek Jeter, gets Curtis Granderson to pop out, then A-Rod to ground out. Andy Pettitte nearly got taken over the right field wall by Dustin Ackley in the game’s first at-bat, but Nick Swisher made a leaping catch. Casper Wells walked, but Ichiro grounded into a double play.
Scoreless after one.
10:07 a.m.: Andy Pettitte isn’t the only, un, older guy pitching today. Kevin Millwood of the Mariners hooks up with battery-mate Jesus Montero once again and that alone could be a spectator sport this afternoon.