Mariners win it 6-3 on a pinch-hit three-run HR by Kendrys Morales off Grant Balfour, that scored Mike Zunino who had reached on a strike three and wild pitch, and then Michael Saunders, who singled on a full count hit-and-run play.
It’s two wins in two days for the M’s against the A’s, and they are now 8-5 this season against Oakland.
Morales had been given the day off but crushed a 94-mile an hour offering from Balfour on the first pitch he saw to win it.
GAME THREAD — Just about off and running as the Mariners attempt to win a series against the A’s. I’ll pass along inning updates and other highlights as the game progresses.
TOP FIRST — Bonderman sharp early, giving up a seeing-hit ground single through the hole to right but otherwise getting out of it, striking out Cespedes for the final out. Scoreless to the bottom of the inning.
BOTTOM FIRST — Chavez led off with a soft single to left and then with two outs Ibanez crushed a Jarrod Parker pitch over the right field wall to make it 2-0. Ibanez now leading the Mariners with 16 HRs and 41 RBI.
TOP SECOND — Bonderman with another decent inning as he gave up a two-out single to Reddick but when struck out Norris to keep it a 2-0 game
BOTTOM SECOND — Three up, three down for the Mariners, though not without a little bit of a fight as Saunders drove it to the wall in left-center before Cespedes tracked it down, falling into the wall himself to end the inning. 2-0 Mariners.
TOP THIRD — Nothing again for the A’s, despite a lead-off single by Eric Sogard. Crisp then followed with a liner caught by Seagar at third and quickly turned into a 5-3 double play that caught Sogard off first base. Still 2-0 Mariners.
BOTTOM THIRD — Three up, three down for the M’s as Parker appears to be hitting his stride. Still 2-0.
TOP FOUR — Bonderman walked Moss and then Reddick with two outs, but got out of it when Reddick hit a hard liner to right that was caught by Chavez. Bonderman up to about 67 pitches so that’ll be worth watching with the Mariners having a short bullpen today.
BOTTOM FOUR — Another home run for Ibanez, this one on a lower, outside pitch that he golfed over the wall in right-center, has made it a 3-0 game. Seattle has just three hits off Parker, but two are Ibanez home runs accounting for all three runs and a 3-0 lead.
TOP FIVE — A needed 1-2-3 low-pitch inning for Bonderman, who has allowed just three hits through five innings and has a 3-0 lead. He’s thrown 77 pitches.
BOTTOM FIVE — Nothing for the Mariners other than a single by Zunino off the glove of 3B Josh Donaldson, a needed hit for the struggling rookie. Still 3-0 Mariners.
TOP SIX — Three singles, a wild pitch and a ground out allowed the A’s to score two runs. Bonderman came out after 97 pitches and the bases loaded, including a wild pitch that allowed a run to score. But Farquhar came in and got two ground outs to second to end the threat, including the final one by former Mariner fan favorite John Jaso, who hit a weak grounder to second for the final out. 3-2 Mariners.
BOTTOM SIX — Nothing for the Mariners in the sixth as even Ibanez proved human, striking out against Parker after homering off him the first two times up.
The most interesting development of the inning was the sight of Jason Bay moving on-deck to hit for Franklin Guiterrez, who hit the wall pretty hard in center catching a long fly from Jed Lowrie in the fourth. Gutirerrez is being shown on TV so it doesn’t look all that serious. He just came off the DL two days ago.
TOP SEVEN — Farquhar another good inning, three up and three down, five straight overall, to keep it a 3-2 game heading to bottom seven.
BOTTOM SEVEN — We were told during the inning that Gutirrez has left with a tight hamstring. So maybe it’s not related to hitting the wall — we’ll find out more after the game. Seattle had a chance to get some insurance with a leadoff walk by Bay and then a one-out single by Zunino that sent him to third. But Saunders then grounded into a 6-3 double play to end the inning. So still 3-2 Mariners.
TOP EIGHT — Farquhar had retired seven in a row before a 3-1 pitch to Brandon Moss caught a little too much of the plate and Moss belted it over the wall in right to tie the game at 3-3. Perez had been warming to close. A’s now bring in Doolittle to replace Parker, the starter. M’s will have Ryan, Chavez and Franklin up.
BOTTOM EIGHT — Three up, three down for M’s, including Chavez on a close play at first on a drag bunt down the line. The crowd predictably booed, but replay showed it to be the right call. Onto thee ninth with the game tied and Perez in to pitch for the Mariners.
TOP NINE — After a leadoff Reddick walk, M’s get out of it and we head to the bottom of nine tied 3-3. The key was the inability of Jaso to get down a bunt after the Reddick walk, popping out to Zunino instead for the first out of the inning.
BOTTOM NINE — Mariners to little against Doolittle and we are now onto bonus panels for the 10th time this season for Seattle.
TOP TEN — Oliver Perez another good inning including K’s of Cespedes, Moss, so we’re on to the bottom of the 10th, tied at 3.