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May 25, 2012 at 9:09 PM

Mariners look to get back on winning track against Angels

Both teams played some long ball and the result is a 4-3 lead for the Mariners in the seventh inning.
First, Justin Smoak ripped an Ervin Santana pitch into the right field seats in the fifth inning with Kyle Seager on base to make it a 4-0 game. But then, in the sixth, a single, a walk and then an Albert Pujols homer to right center off Blake Beavan put the Angels right back in it.
The M’s have to try to pad this lead. If not, the bullpen will have to keep Pujols in the ballpark and that’s not an easy thing to do.
8:23 p.m.: Seattle leads it 2-0 after a run in the third inning, but once again, they pushed Ervin Santana to the brink before letting him off the hook. Santana got rocked by the inning’s first three batters as Ichiro doubled to the right-center gap, then took third on a long flyball out by Kyle Seager to the right field warning track.
Justin Smoak then lined a ball to right field for the RBI. John Jaso drew a walk after that to bring Angels catcher John Hester out tp the mound for a conference with Santana.
Whatever he said worked as Jesus Montero immediately grounded into a 6-4-3 double-play to get Santana out of a potentially huge jam.

7:41 p.m.: We’ve got the Mariners out in front, 1-0 after the first inning, though it could have been a lot worse for Ervin Santana, who issued three walks and a single. Michael Saunders got the leadoff single on the second pitch he saw — living up to his pre-game vow not to stand there seeing pitches — and then Alex Liddi walked.
Ichiro grounded out to move both runners up, then Kyle Seager worked a nice walk to load them up. Justin Smoak hit into a fielder’s choice that pulled shortstop Erick Aybar off the base as he leaped to avoid a slidign Seager and attempt the double-play.
Aybar got the out call in any event. Smoak was safe at first base and the run scored.
John Jaso then walked to load the bases. But Jesus Montero, the human tortoise, hit a grounder that bounced off the glove of third baseman Alberto Callaspo.
A normal human runner would have made it to first. But not a normal human tortoise. Callaspo had all day to calmy race over, retrieve the ball and heave it across the diamond to get Montero. Callaspo could have done the easy thing, like step on his bag for the force out. But he figured he’d have an easier time throwing the ball all the way to first gven how Montero runs.
Turns out he was right.
7:02 p.m.: They just completed one of those softball slow-pitch home run derbys on the field pregame. Now, let’s see whether it continues with Ervin Santana on the mound for the Los Angeles Angels.
Santana has already given up a dozen homers this season. Among the many problems the Angels have had, this certainly rates as one of them.
Blake Beavan is going for the Mariners. If he doesn’t make better pitches to Abert Pujols than Jason Vargas did last night, we could see some long balls flying in the other direction as well.

Comments | Topics: Jesus Montero


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