Seattle Mariners lefty Jason Vargas threw a three-hit Fathers Day shutout today, blanking the Philadelphia Phillies in a 2-0 victory.
“Jason got more outs with his curveball today than he had all season,” pitching coach Carl Willis said. “He stayed away from a pattern, because that’s a team that will figure you out quickly.
“It’s the same pitch he’d throw for a first-pitch strike early this season, then put away. Today, he got a couple of strikeouts with it, a couple of big ground balls to shortstop.”
It was the second career complete-game shutout for Vargas – the first game June 3 against Tampa Bay – but there’s an asterisk there. Vargas pitched nine shutout innings in Baltimore on May 12, but didn’t get a decision.
When Vargas got to the ninth inning, closer Brandon League got loose, but manager Eric Wedge let Vargas finish with 119 pitches.
“I love to pitch, yeah, but I wanted Jason to get the shutout,” League said. “He shutout the Phillies – that’s cool.”
The Mariners took two of three games from the team with the best record in baseball, and did it with a little help from rookie second baseman Dustin Ackley, who tripled and scored Seattle’s second run today.
“The highest praise I can give him,” Wedge said, “is that he’s stepped right in and contributed.”
Shortstop Brendan Ryan was asked about the second sellout crowd of the season at Safeco Field – 45, 462 – and the series against the Phillies.
“We’ve created an environment, and you’d have to be dead not to feel it,” Ryan said.