After being two-hit yesterday by Nick Blackburn, the Mariners actually face one of Minnesota’s better pitchers in 15-game winner Carl Pavano.
That could mean trouble for an offense that seems unable to produce many threats, let alone runs. So Luke French has to start the day thinking ‘no runs’ while facing a Twins team that’s hitting .279.
Someone has to produce, whether it’s Ichiro, Russell Branyan or Matt Tuiasosopo. Like virtually every Seattle starting pitcher, French should have a better record than his 2-4. Without runs, however, the Mariners can’t out-pitch anyone.
- French has given his teammates the opportunity to score first – they haven’t – by shuttin down the Twins the first two innings. He walked Denard Span, but got a double play ball from Michael Cuddyer, then worked a 1-2-3 sedcond inning. Seattle’s offense? We’ll get back to you.
- The Mariners attack has a pulse! Two out single by Franklin Gutierrez, who promptly stole his 19th base, followed by a walk to Adam Moore. Matt Tuiasosopo struck out.
- Denard Span collected the Twins first hit, a single off the glove of Chone Figgins, and Span took second base on a wild pitch. When Span tried stealing third, Moore threw him out. In the fourth inning: No score.
- After five innings, French and Pavano have dominated, and neither team has foen a man as far as third base. This may be a game decided by a mistake – a botched play, a bad pitch. If it’s going to be decided by a three-or-four-hit rally, the Mariners are in trouble.
- Mariners go down 1-2-3 in the sixth. They were two-hit yesterday and today they have – yikes! – two hits.
- Cuddyer just hit the first real mistake French made – hitting his 12th home run. In the seventh: Minnesota 1, Seattle 0.
- Mariners offense pulsates again! One out singles for Jose Lopez and Casey Kotchman put runners on first and second base, and both men moved up on a wild pitch. Gutierrez singled, Lopez scoring. Moore grounded out, Kotchman scoring. In the seventh: Seattle 2, Minnesota 1.
- In the eighth: Brandon League pitching in relief.
- In the ninth: David Aardsma pitching in relief. It’s a final: Seattle 2, Minnesota 1.