The Mariners rallied from a 2-0 deficit with a two-run fifth inning but couldn’t generate much offense after that, falling 3-2 in 11 innings to the Boston Red Sox Friday night at Safeco Field to split the four-game series.
In the top of the 11th, Brock Holt, who entered the game as a pinch hitter in the seventh inning, delivered the game-winning hit with an RBI single off Seattle’s Cody Martin. Holt’s two-out single up the middle scored Travis Shaw from second base.
The Ariel Miranda era got off to a decent start, as he held the Red Sox to two runs off eight hits over six innings in his Mariners debut. Acquired in the Wade Miley deal, Miranda survived a rough first inning and a leadoff homer in the second to put up a solid first major-league start.
Veteran relievers Drew Storen, Vidal Nuno and Tom Wilhelmsen all looked good while sending the game into extra innings. Reliever Blake Parker also made his Mariners debut and labored through the 10th – literally, as his wind-up seems to take as much energy as a Greco-Roman wrestling match – without giving up a run.
Martin (1-2) gave up two singles and took the loss.
The Mariners couldn’t take advantage of Boston starter Drew Pomeranz’s control issues, settling for just two runs despite six walks.
SS Shawn O’Malley opened the two-run fifth with his first home run of the season, then 1B Dae-Ho Lee tied the score 2-2 with a single after the Red Sox intentionally walked Nelson Cruz. O’Malley had three hits. Seattle went 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position and stranded four runners on base after the fifth inning. In the 11th, pinch-runner Luis Sardinas was left at third when PH Seth Smith struck out to end the game.
“A frustrating night for our offense. To hold that team to two runs into the 11th inning,
you’ve got to get more offense.” – Mariners manager Scott Servais
The Mariners made several roster moves Thursday, the most notable of which was placing supplanted closer Steve Cishek on the 15-day disabled list. Cishek (torn labrum in his left hip) could be out for the season. Seattle also promoted Miranda and reliever Blake Parker while optioning reliever Donn Roach to Triple-A. To make room for Parker on the 40-man roster, Seattle released reliever Mayckol Guaipe . . . Thursday was officially Irish Heritage Night at Safeco Field, although it may well have been dubbed Cuban Baseball Night. The Mariners had three Cubans among their nine players: Miranda, LF Guillermo Heredia and CF Leonys Martin. (Hey, at least the club tried to keep up the Irish theme with Shawn O’Malley at shortstop.) . . . David Ortiz, playing what’s likely to be his final game at Safeco Field, went 1 for 5 with a first-inning single. He grounded out to first base in the 10th, his final at-bat in the stadium where he hit 16 home runs. Only Mark Teixeira (19) and Rafael Palmeiro (17) have hit more at Safeco.
Seattle native and former Huskies star Tim Lincecum will try to re-fire his fading career when he returns home to face Felix Hernandez for the first time at 7:10 p.m. Friday night. The 31-year-old Lincecum (2-5, 8.49 ERA) is trying to make a comeback with the Angels but is probably another bad start or two from being cut. He won’t be the only over-the-hill former Cy Young winner pitching Friday, as the 30-year-old Hernandez (5-4, 3.46 ERA) has given indications that his best years are behind him. He’s not washed up yet, and the Mariners hope to get a few more good years out of King Felix. But ewe can no longer expect eight innings and two runs or fewer every night out.