Adrian Beltre has a home in Los Angeles, and since he’s not going to New York with the Mariners – and won’t have shoulder surgery until Tuesday – he decided to play one more game.
The opportunity today: steal a series from the first-place Dodgers and flee to the east coast.
It’s Garrett Olson vs. Hiroki Kuroda, and the Mariners get one more day of Gold Glove defense at third base.
What they need as much is production from left-handed hitters like Ichiro, Russell Branyan and Ken Griffey Jr.
The hot stay hot
Among the Mariners hottest hitters in this series, Jose Lopez and Franklin Gutierrez have put Seattle on top early.
Lopez singled – his sixth hit of this series – stole second base and scored on a one-out single by Gutierrez.
The steal by Lopez is a reminder that the Mariners will try most anything to manufacture runs. This time, it worked.
In the second: Mariners 1, Dodgers 0
Catchers and stats
As promised, a few numbers requested by moo and others.
Kenji Johjima’s catching ERA is 5.04, but that’s from a small sampling since he’s been on the disabled list twice already this season and doesn’t have many innings caught.
As for the Mariners record by catcher: Rob Johnson (20-14), Johjima (10-15), Jamie Burke (6-5) and Guillermo Quiroz (2-2).
Make of it what you will.
Adrian will be missed
Over his last 31 games, Beltre is batting .331, and his one-out RBI single in the third scored Ichiro.
It was a typical Mariners rally. Infield single (Ichiro), opposite field single (Branyan) and ground ball just out of an infielders reach (Beltre).
Kuroda hurt himself with a wild throw trying to pick off Branyan, and with runners at second and third with two out, Lopez came through again – a two-run double over the head of center fielder Matt Kemp.
In the third: Mariners 4, Dodgers 0
Olson left a 1-1 pitch up and Matt Kemp hit it out, a solo home run that puts Los Angeles on the scoreboard.
Following that homer, the Dodgers got a pair of singles sandwiched around Kuroda’s sacrifice, to put runners at first and third base with one out.
After five: Mariners 4, Dodgers 2
Oh, that Seattle bullpen
Asked to finish off four innings with relievers, Don Wakamatsu reached out first to Miguel Batista has eaten half of those.
A scoreless sixth and seventh has the Mariners in position to use Sean White and David Aardsma in the eighth and ninth innings, except the team wants to give White (tender elbow) another few days off.
In the eighth, it’s Mark Lowe.
In the eighth: Mariners 4, Dodgers 2
And in the ninth
Lowe worked a quick eighth inning, and then it was Aardsma time again for Seattle.
The right-hander has allowed the opposition runs in just one of his last 26 appearances and is becoming as close to automatic as the Mariners have.
Seventeen save opportunities, 16 saves.
As for Seattle, it’s taken a series from the 48-28 Dodgers in L.A. – heady stuff. The Mariners are now 39-36
The final: Mariners 4, Dodgers 2