Mariners Insider

Punchless Mariners waste another fine start in 4-1 loss to Padres

Post by Bob Dutton / The News Tribune on June 19, 2014 at 6:24 pm with 6 Comments »
June 19, 2014 7:48 pm
Mariners right-hander Erasmo Ramirez pitched six scoreless innings but settled for a no-decision in a 4-1 loss to the Padres. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)
Mariners right-hander Erasmo Ramirez pitched six scoreless innings but settled for a no-decision in a 4-1 loss to the Padres. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

SAN DIEGO — Expect the Mariners to re-double those efforts to find some additional lineup punch after wasting another superb start Thursday afternoon in a 4-1 loss to the San Diego Padres at Petco Park.

This time, it was six scoreless innings from Erasmo Ramirez before the Padres sprung to life in the seventh against rookie Dominic Leone, who inherited a 1-0 lead from Ramirez.

And how unlikely was that?

Leone entered the game with a 1.19 ERA after limiting opponents to one run over 17 2/3 innings in his previous 15 appearances.

“Everything was up,” he said. “I didn’t do my part, and they did what they’re supposed to do. They put good swings on it.”

The Padres scored four runs in the seventh against Leone and Joe Beimel in gaining a split in the two-and-two “natural rivalry” series against the Mariners, who won Monday and Tuesday at Safeco Field.

Leone’s rare, but ill-timed, rough outing aside — look, he’d been lights out until Thursday — the Mariners could also trace their troubles to an attack again mired in snooze mode.

They managed just one tainted run in seven innings against Padres rookie Jesse Hahn…one day after a 2-1 loss in which Felix Hernandez settled for a no-decision after yielding one run in seven innings.

“We’ve got to string better at-bats together and better contact together,” first baseman Logan Morrison said. “It can’t be that Robby (Cano) is the only one hitting. We’ve got to figure it out.”

Ramirez exited the game for a pinch-hitter in the seventh despite having thrown just 70 pitches. He has not allowed a run in his last 16 2/3 innings, which covers three-plus starts.

“I feel like I’m back to being myself,” Ramirez said. “Every outing, I feel I’m getting better. That’s the idea. Just pound the strike zone, no matter who I face. That’s my goal.”

Why the hook?

“He’s struggled to this point,” manager Lloyd McClendon said. “We’re finally starting to turn the corner with him. If we can get him out of there on a positive note and continue to build, that’s what we’re going to do.

“Our bullpen just didn’t hold them.”

Leone (2-1) started the seventh by retiring Yasmani Grandal on a fine play by Cano at second, but Tommy Medica followed with a triple past a diving James Jones in center field.

The Mariners pulled their infield in, which didn’t matter when Cameron Maybin tied the game by plugging the right-center gap for another triple.

“(Leone) was just missing up,” catcher John Buck said. “Normally, he throws that razor-blade thing down and away. It just backed up, and was up.”

Carlos Quentin batted for Alexi Amarista and, with the Mariners keeping their infield in, drew a walk.

After Jace Peterson replaced Quentin as a pinch-runner, Chris Denorfia batted for Hahn and lined an RBI single into center.

That finished Leone.

In came Beimel, who retired Will Venable on a grounder before yielding a two-run single to Everth Cabrera. That made it 4-1. Both runs were charged to Leone, whose ERA nearly doubled to 2.35.

“We got our (backside) kicked,” McClendon said. “That’s what I saw. It’s that simple. Sometimes, we try to overanalyze things. I don’t have that answer. It’s baseball. They got hit. Move on.

“It happens to everybody.”

Joaquin Benoit and Huston Street each pitched a scoreless inning in protecting the victory for Hahn (2-1). Street got his 20th save.

The Mariners scored their only run in the fifth and only because the Padres’ defense sabotaged Hahn after Brad Miller drew a leadoff walk.

Hahn struck out Ramirez, who bunted through a third strike, and should have been out of the inning when Endy Chavez sent a hopper back to the mound. Hahn made a good throw to second…but Cabrera dropped the ball.

So runners at first and second with one out.

Hahn struck out Jones, but Cano lined an RBI single into center. The Mariners settled for just one run, though, because Seager stranded runners at first and third by striking out.

One run wasn’t enough.

“We had some chances,” McClendon said. “We just didn’t have very good at-bats in scoring opportunities today. That’s been our challenge all year.”


Leave a comment Comments → 6
  1. SRVHawk81 says:

    Good to see Ramirez pitching better even if he probably is out of the rotation once Walker is ready. This offense is plain pathetic right now. Many here including myself were worried that they didn’t get what they needed to offensively in the off-season and that has come to fruition.

  2. It’s Robby and nothing right now.
    Imagine if Miller, Ackley and the Smoak-Morrison combo at first were replaced by even average major leaguers for their positions.
    The bad is weighing heavily on the good.

  3. SRVHawk81 says:

    Miller is not the problem IMO. LoMo sucks. I don’t ever see him being a good starter. I still am holding some hope for Ackley, but he needs to ramp it up soon. Smoak is what he is. An average player if healthy. They desperately need someone like Montero to step up.

  4. Skysport says:

    The M’s have three “can’t miss” hitting talents in Ackley, Smoak, and Miller, all of whom can’t hit. Robinson Cano must be starting to feel like Robinson Crusoe.

  5. AZBubba71 says:

    Enjoyed my trip to San Diego (except for the two losses). What a great ballpark…microbrews everywhere! Like it a little bit more than Safeco.

    Ackley appears to be way to comfortable for a guy batting about .230. Seems listless in his behavior. Would also like to see him lose the Duck Dynasty beard…that sort of weirdness should be reserved for guys that can bat over .280.

    Smoak will never be the answer. Time to admit that we got nothing in return for the Lee trade other than Beavan (a sometimes #5 starter/long reliever when not pitching at AAA), and one year of a decent Jaso (acquired in a trade for Leuke).

    Miller was never described as a “can’t miss” hitting talent. His emergence last year as a competent SS with pop that played the game the right way was a pleasant surprise. His struggles batting this year have been a disappointment in light of nearly batting .500 during spring training.

    Finally…I LOVE James Jones and think that he will be our CF for years to come and a likely leadoff hitter, but I saw him throw home on consecutive nights when he had NO (none) chance to record an out. In each case, that throw allowed the batter to advance to 2nd. Fortunately, the runner did not end up scoring either night. Hoping that the coaches correct that behavior quickly.

  6. Love the Robinson Crusoe line, LOL.

    I agree that upgrading 1B would have more impact, right now.
    But, Miller is a below average MLB shortstop.
    He’s makes no one’s list as one of the ten best defensive shortstop’s in the game, and he’s hitting a buck ninety-two.
    Potential is a French word that means you aren’t worth a damn yet.

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