Mariners Insider

Mariners 4, White Sox 3 (14 innings) — Ichiro’s mad dash

Post by Ryan Divish on Sep. 17, 2009 at 9:34 pm with 1 Comment »
September 17, 2009 9:34 pm

AP photo
AP photo

Well, that was 3 hours and 59 minutes of excitement and goodness. A quick note, I think I’ll be using italics to represent sarcasm. But then again every one of my blog posts would just be all italics.

Anyway, kind of a plodding game had a nice little bit of excitement in the ninth inning and Ichiro’s walk-off heroics in the 14th and his dash to left-center to avoid the now traditional celebratory pummeling by teammates. After getting his first career walk-off hit on July 28th this year, Ichiro knew what was coming.

“I was thinking just stay away from (Mike) Sweeney when I hit it,” Ichiro told the Japanese media.

And stay away he did by running past second base out into left-center.

“I thought he was going to run to all the way to the bullpen,” said leftfielder Bill Hall.

Bullpen? For a moment, it looked as though Ichiro might be headed for Canada in search of asylum from his teammates enthusiastic back slaps.

That’s not really the fairest thing to do after you play 14 innings, and Ichiro eventually relented, backpedaling a little, talking a little trash, taking some water thrown at him by Sweeney and then receiving his beating like a man.

“I was ready to quit,” Hall said. “I was already too tired to run that far.”

But if he wanted to avoid it, he could have.

“Nobody really can catch me,” Ichiro said.

Hall agreed.

“There’s not a guy on this team that could catch him,” Hall said. “Maybe if we cornered him, Guti (Franklin Gutierrez) might be able to run him down.

AP photo
AP photo

It was Hall and Jose Lopez who tied the game in the ninth off of closer Bobby Jenks. They both hit solo home runs. Lopez hit a belt-high fastball to – shock of shocks – left field, while Hall sat on a slider and ripped it to the visitors bullpen to tie the game. According the White Sox media relations, it was the first time Jenks allowed two homers in an outing in his career.

Not to sound like “you know who” but I was a little surprised that White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen lifted Danks since he was only at 97 pitches and absolutely dealing.

Guillen didn’t address that. He had well an Ozzie-type moment after the game, check out this post from the Sun Times.

My favorite parts?

‘‘I’m only going to say two things,’’ manager Ozzie Guillen said after another collapse. ‘‘I’m tired and I don’t have anything … it was 2œ hours of satisfaction and then 2œ hours of horse [crap] baseball. Go and ask them. I don’t have any more quotes, seriously. What the [expletive] am I going to say? [Are] they horse [crap]? Yes, they are.’’

And this beauty from before the game …

‘‘This is a tease, man,’’ he admitted. “It’s like when you have a girlfriend and you are kissing her all over the place and you get to the mambo, and she says no. That’s where we are right now. That’s the way we are. Like I say, it doesn’t matter what Detroit does. It only matters what we do.

It’s neverending gold.

Ok, back to the Mariners.
A few things I didn’t get to mention in my game story.

Brandon Morrow wasn’t great, too many walks (six), too many pitches 97 in 5 2/3 innings, with a few moments of solid pitching (6) innings.

“The story has been the command and the walks,” Wakamatsu said. “Two of those walks scored, if he eliminates those maybe he give up one run.”

Wakamatsu can see glimpses of what Morrow could be. The six strike outs and the swings and misses.

“I don’t know if its command or being tentative,” Wakamatsu said. “The amazing thing is that he doesn’t get hit, it’s a credit to the stuff he has, the rest is being aggressive and going at hitters.”

So it was left up to the bullpen and Jason Vargas, Randy Messenger, Garrett Olson, Miguel Batista, David Aardsma, Mark Lowe and Shawn Kelley all took their turns without allowing a run.

“Thank God it’s September and we have some arms down there,” Wakamatsu said.

Wakamatsu also raved about the youngster Matt Tuiasosopo and Adam Moore.

“My hats off to the two young players, Tui played a phenomenal second base and I thought Adam Moore did a phenomenal job behind the plate,” Wakamatsu said.

Tui had a double and made a sweet diving play in the 10th to steal a hit. He left when he was pinch hit for by some guy named Griffey.

While no player likes to get pinch hit for, Tuiasosopo admitted having a sure hall of famer and childhood hero do it, makes it bearable.

Moore didn’t get a hit, but he caught all 14 innings and eight different pitchers and looked good doing so.

“The one thing that is harder than people understand is how many guys he caught for the first time in that ball game,” Wakamatsu said. “It’s not an easy task, I thought he did a great job of calling.”

“Early on I was nervous,” Moore said. “I was joking with Rob (Johnson) on the bench. I told him I was feeling exhausted the fifth inning. It was a great time, a great win and I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

Said Wakamatsu: “You always remember your first game in the big leagues, but he will really remember this one.”

WHITE SOX NOTES:

  • John Danks pitched 8.0 innings, matching a career-high done five times (last: Aug. 11 at SEA)…has tossed at least 6.0 innings in each of his last 11 starts…in his last 8 starts is 3-1, 2.14 ERA (13 ER, 54.2 IP) with 31 strikeouts, allowing 2 earned runs or less in 6 of his outings.
  • Mark Kotsay went 4×6…his first 4-hit game this season…is 14×35 (.400) with 3 HR and 12 RBI in his last 10 games.
  • Paul Konerko went 3×6 with a double and a run scored…has multi-hit games in 3 of his last 4 games…leads the team in doubles with 29 and extra-base hits with 56…ranks 5th on the White Sox all-time list with 304 doubles.
  • Alexei Ramirez went 1×6, extending his hitting streak to 7 games and his road hitting streak to 11 games, batting .390 (16×41) with 3 runs scored, 1 home run and 3 RBI during the span…also batting .333 (21×63) with 5 runs scored, 1 home run and 8 RBI in his last 17 games.
  • Scott Podsednik went 1×5 with 2 walks and a run…batting .354 (23×65) in Sept.; .363 (16×44) in last 10 games.
  • Gordon Beckham went 1×6 and has hit safely in 9 of his last 12 games, batting .277 (13×47) during the span.
  • Chris Getz walked 4 times…ties a team season high for walks…walked 3 times on Aug. 11 at Safeco…has 7 walks in last 3 games against Seattle…recorded stolen base #25 and is 2nd in stolen bases to Podsednik (27) on White Sox.
  • Bobby Jenks allowed 2 home runs in one outing for the first time in his career.
  • The White Sox are 4-6 in extra inning games this season.

MARINERS NOTES:

  • Ichiro Suzuki hit his 2nd career walk-off hit (last: July 28, 2009) to clinch the series for the Mariners.
  • The last time the Mariners tied a game in the bottom of the 9th inning on two solo home runs was July 19, 2004 when Miguel Olivo and Edgar Martinez both hit solo shots against the Red Sox…Mariners ended up winning the game on a walk-off grand slam by Bret Boone.
  • Bill Hall went 1×6 with a game-tying home run in the 9th inning, his 2nd home run as a Mariner.
  • Seattle is 41-31 at home, clinching a winning record in Safeco for 3rd time in last 4 seasons (also: 2006, 2007).
  • Brandon Morrow made his 2nd start since being recalled from AAA Tacoma…struck out 5 batters, his most since striking out 7 on July 5 at Boston…allowed a career-high 6 walks in 5 2/3 innings, also tying an individual season-high walks allowed for the Mariners (4x).
  • Adrian Beltre went 1×5 with a home run, extending his hitting streak to 6 games…during the span he is batting .320 (8×25)…also recorded stolen base #11…Beltre is 3rd on the team in SB behind Ichiro (25) and Gutierrez (14).
  • Jose Lopez went 2×6, extending his career high with his 24th home run…leads team in extra base hits with 61.
  • Bill Hall went 1×6 with a game-tying home run in the 9th inning, his 2nd home run as a Mariner.
  • Ichiro Suzuki went 2×6 with a double, extending hitting streak to 6 games…during streak he is batting .333 (9×27).
  • Mike Sweeney went 2×5 giving the Mariners their first hit of the game in the 4th inning…has hit safely in 13 of last 18 games, batting .385 (25×65) with 9 R, 5 2B, 3 HR, and 11 RBI…has raised his season average from .228 to .274
  • Infielder Matt Tuiasosopo made his season debut, going 1×4 with a double.
  • Catcher Adam Moore made his Major League debut today but did not record a hit.
  • The Mariners are 9-6 in extra inning games this season…relievers pitched 8 1/3 scoreless innings of relief.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

  • Saturday’s game vs. the Yankees will start at 7:10 p.m. It had previously been listed as a 6:10 p.m. start time.
  • Sunday’s Mariners vs. Yankees will be broadcast on 770 AM as previously announced. Mariners games on Sunday Sept. 20, Sept. 27 and Oct. 4 will be broadcast on 770 AM, due to conflicts with Seahawks football on 710 ESPN Seattle.
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Leave a comment Comments → 1
  1. tomiron24 says:

    Ryan, thank you for some great coverage and writing.
    I love the Ichiro and Hall comments about the game winner. (And some Ozzie gold also, since we beat them). And Wak and the young players. Thank you!

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