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April 5, 2014 at 12:08 PM

Game thread: Mariners at A’s … April 5, 2014

4-6 lineups

First inning

Both pitchers – Dan Straily and Felix Hernandez – look sharp, going three up and three down to start the game.

Second inning

Straily and Hernandez continue to roll, both going 1-2-3. Straily has four strikeouts already. Kyle Seager has looked off this season and for much of spring. He’s 1-for-12 to start the season with six strikeouts.

Third inning

Hey there’s a hit. Logan Morrison with a lead-off single. But nothing comes of it. Ackley pops out and Zunino and Almonte strike out. Straily’s command is pretty sharp.

Felix rolls through the A’s 1-2-3.

Fourth inning

Cano checks in with a single, but again the Mariners do little with it.

Felix gets into a spot of trouble. He gave up a two out single to Jed Lowrie and then Brandon Moss got a break as Brad Miller lost his towering pop up in the sun for a double. But it didn’t matter, Felix came back and struck out Cespedes in dominating fashion. His curveball is working today.

 Fifth inning

The magic of Dan Straily comes crashing down. Seager checks in with a much-needed lead-off double and Dustin Ackley drilled a one-out, two-run homer to right field. Abraham Almonte later followed with a two-out solo homer that was crushed and damn near landed in the upper deck.

Mariners lead 3-0.

I think we all know by now that McClendon likes Almonte. I was saving this for a later blog post, but he said this before yesterday’s game about Almonte:

“I told my coaches, this kid last night showed us a little bit of everything. He showed us how great he’s going to be, he also showed us how young he is. You have to live with the mistakes and encourage him and make him better. He’s got a chance to be a pretty good player. He’s got the total package. He’s a switch-hitter, he’s got power from both sides, he can run like a deer, and he’s got an arm like a cannon.”

“I think we saw the greatness when he went into the gap on a ball that was a sure double and made a running catch. Then he makes the error on the base paths and with the ball that got away from him. But you live with it. We understand that he’s going to make some mistakes, but you also understand he’s going to be great. One day, we’re going to be talking about how special of a career this young man has had. We just have to continue to make him better.”

So there’s that.

 Sixth inning

Felix gave up a one-out triple to Crisp. But he came back to strike out Josh Donaldson, who was none too pleased, and get Lowrie to pop up weakly to short to end the inning.

Seventh inning

Mariners go down 1-2-3 against reliever Drew Pomeranz. Straily’s line: 6 innings pitched, three runs on six hits with a walk and seven strikeouts.

Eighth inning

Felix works through the inning getting some help from his defense. Justin Smoak snares a sure single from Eric Sogard out of the air with leaping grab at first base. Defensive replacement Michael Saunders makes a nice shoestring catch on a liner from Coco Crisp to end the inning. Good substitution by McClendon. I’m guessing that ball is still rolling around of Morrison was out there.

Also been notified by the M’s that only handful of seats remain for the home opener.

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