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News » Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-13

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-13

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-05-13
First-year Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik spent the winter trying to build his team's roster based on good pitching and solid defense.

The complete results aren't in, but the pitching has been reasonably good (Seattle came into the week ranked fifth in the American League in ERA), but an error-prone defense hasn't lived up to expectations.

The Mariners began the week ranked 13th in the 14-team American League in defense, and they've made at least one error in five of the last six games.

The bad news is that any day when either the pitching or the defense fails is likely to be a long day for Seattle, because the offense has been consistently non-productive.

Tuesday was a reasonably typical example. The Mariners scratched out just one run in the first seven innings, then the bullpen in the person of right-hander Mark Lowe gave up six runs in the bottom of the seventh, half of those unearned thanks to a two-out error by first baseman Russell Branyan.

Tuesday marked the 10th time in 33 games Seattle's offense has produced either zero or one runs. That means the offense has been uncompetitive almost one-third of the time, although there have been two 1-0 wins among those 10 games.

RANGERS 7, MARINERS 1: The Rangers, who started the Mariners on their current downturn by winning two games in Seattle May 4-5, stunned Seattle with six runs in the seventh inning Tuesday. Texas beat Seattle for the third time in three tries.

Seattle, down 1-0 for most the game thanks to a homer by Texas 1B Chris Davis, tied the game in the top of the seventh when C Kenji Johjima doubled home Franklin Gutierrez.

But RHP Mark Lowe, asked to face the middle of the Texas lineup in the bottom of the seventh, gave up a tiebreaking two-run homer to CF Josh Hamilton, just off the disabled list, and the Rangers went on to score six times in the inning. Three of those runs were unearned.

Starting with Texas' 6-5 win in Safeco Field on May 4, the Mariners have lost seven of their last eight games to go from leading the American League West by 2 1/2 games to third place, trailing the first-place Rangers by 2 1/2 games.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: May 13, 2009

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