I had to work late, so was unable to watch the game (other than quick glances at At Bat) but, I was able to listen, on my way home, to what turned out to be the best part – a bit of the 8th and all of the 9th!
23-straight, scoreless innings (but who’s counting? not me!) and then came the 8th which was…
Really good = a lead-triple by Jaso and an rbi single by Ackley
and, Really bad = strikeout by Figgy and a GDIP by Ichi
But hey, the scoreless draught was over, although most were probably thinking,
“too little, too late”
“M’s up to their old non-tricks again”
Not so fast, Speed Racer. The M’s had plans. They had plans for their bats, plans for their legs, plans for their arms, plans for where that little round ball was gonna go but, most of all, they had plans for touching home plate one more time than the Rangers tonight.
Yes indeed, the 9th inning was a thing of beauty…
a lead-off single by Smoak, a double by Seager and a sac-fly by Jesus and, whah-lah! One run closer.
Kawasaki had pinch run for Seager and he scored from third when Saunders hit his second double of the night. Then, get this, Michael STEALS 3B!
OK, all was not beautiful cuz Ryan struck out and Michael was still standing at 3B. But then, wanting to out-do his ownself in his Mariners debut, John Jaso brings Michael home with a single to shallow center.
And then it was BLT…
M’s took a 4-3 lead into the bottom of the 9th and, without too much drama (a fly-out, a single, a strikeout, a wild pitch and a line-out) Brandon walked off the mound and to fist bump with Jesus to celebrate his third save and the M’s fourth win.A win in Arlington. whodathunk it?
Possibly lost in the the after-glow of the 9th inning luster was…
Mr. Millwood’s Mariner debut. Certainly nothing lustrous about his first inning (all 34 pitches worth) but amazingly, he was able to escape by allowing only one run. Then, over the next 5 innings he would give up only a walk, a single and a double but NO runs and, in fact, retire 15 of the last 17 batters he faced. I heard tell that there were a couple of times early on that he summoned Jesus to the mound in order to get on the same page. Good on him, that’s how the lad is going to learn. Hard to imagine Jesus not paying attention to that voice (man, does Millwood have some pipes!)
Anyhoo, I had the thought when I first saw the lineup tweeted this afternoon…
that this seemed to be a great opportunity to get Jesus behind the plate for his Mariners catching debut. Sure, Arlington can be a scary place for a battery but, Mr. Millwood knows it like the back of his hand, not to mention most of the hitters he would be facing. What better on-the-job mentor for Jesus?One more game in Texas and then our guys FINALLY get to head home from their first little road trip that took them from Zona to Toyko back to Zona to Oakland and to Arlington. Considering all that, sure is nice that they have a chance to split the 4-game set with the Rangers but, no matter what, they will open tomorrow at Safeco Field with no worse than a .500 record.