Bats break streak, Vargas Masterful in win
The Headline: Jason Vargas puts together one of his best starts of the season while the Mariners bats score just enough for a win.
Seattle Mariners 3, Oakland Athletics 2
When: 10:10 ET, Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Where: Safeco Field, Seattle
Umpires: Home — Dale Scott, 1B — Dan Iassogna, 2B — C.B. Bucknor, 3B — Bill Miller
1. Seattle Finally Scores
The Mariner’s entered last night’s game having gone their last two games without scoring a run.
That streak extended itself to a drab 25 innings before last night’s third inning.
The offense was less than explosive last night (3 runs on 7 hits), but thank God they at least put some runs on the board. Then again, it’s just been that kind of season for the M’s.
2. Jason Vargas
Vargas did what he does best last night, pitch at home.
The 29-year old lefty had a great night, pitching 6.2 innings in which he allowed 2 runs and struck out a career high 10 batters. He was almost untouchable, giving up just 2 walks and 3 hits. He was great with runners on, inducing two double plays.
The most unfortunate part of his start is that Vargas was left hanging with a no decision.
3. Brendan Ryan
Shortstop Brendan Ryan is a man on a mission. Over his last 10 games, he’s batting .323 with 7 RBI, all while batting in the bottom of Seattle’s order.
He continued his torrid pace last night, going 1-3 at the plate with a stolen base—his fifth on the season. His RBI single in the 8th represented the winning run for the M’s. His glove work in the 7th—a spinning grab and throw to first—wasn’t too shabby either.
Despite his hot streak, the defensive minded Ryan is still batting just .179 on the season.
1. Yoenis Cespedes
This guys is a Mariner killer!
Batting .265/.327/.471 on the year, Cespedes belted his 8th home run of the season last night—a 7th inning line drive to left. The rookie out of Cuba is hitting just .185 in nine contests against the M’s, but he also has a .822 OPS against Seattle pitchers.
That’s because he’s teed up Mariner pitching for 3 home runs, 1 double and 7 RBI on the season.
It’s something about this kid that just spells doom for Seattle.
2. Brandon League
After a horrific May, Brandon League was demoted from the closer role. Throughout June he’s had ups-and-downs, but for the most part he’s been solid—posting a 2.61 ERA and 2.67 K/BB in 10.1 innings.
He’s been so solid that there’s been discussion of him returning to the role sooner than later. That might have changed after last night.
Though League himself didn’t give up any runs, he did allow 2 hits in 0.1 innings of work, striking out none. One of those hits—a Jonny Gomes single in the 7th—allowed an inherited runner to score, thus tying the game and spoiling the party for Vargas.
3. Usual Seager and Smoak
Well, the Mariner’s have finally headed back to Safeco to close out the month in June. You know what that means. It’s time for Kyle Seager and Justin Smoak to crawl into their respective burrows and rest their weary bats for the next road trip.
The M’s semi-deadly duo are hitting a combined .172 at home this season, and unsurprisingly enough they were both hitless at the plate last night!
Seager did have a sac fly in the third, so at least their names in the batting order wasn’t a complete waste of ink.
Ichiro Suzuki was making his first start of the season at designated hitter. He went 2-for-3 to extend his hitting streak to seven games. Brandon Hicks made his first major league start at first baseman for the A’s.
The 26-year-old had to borrow a first baseman’s glove from Gomes.
The Mariners have allowed a total of six runs in their last four games after yielding 39 in the previous four.