Baltimore staked Steve Johnson, who entered Wednesday’s game with just two innings of major league experience, to a 7-0 lead and the rookie punched out nine Mariners batters through six innings en route to a 9-2 victory, the first of his career. The Orioles bombarded three Seattle pitchers for 14 hits, while the Mariners failed to generate any offense until the sixth, when Kyle Seager hit a two-run homer.
Johnson allowed two runs on five hits and walked two. Matt Wieters drove in five Baltimore runs, and five Orioles hitters had multi-hit games, including the No. 9 hitter, Omar Quintanilla.
The three-game sweep was the Mariners’ fourth consecutive loss. They are 1-5 since a team-best seven-game winning streak ended Aug. 1.
The Mariners twice had opportunities to damage the Orioles, loading the bases in the second and eighth innings. But Seattle could not push a run across.
The Orioles got to starter Kevin Millwood early, when Wieters drove home J.J. Hardy (single) and Adam Jones (fielder’s choice) with a two-run double for a 2-0 Baltimore lead. Millwood labored in the first, throwing 37 pitches.
The Mariners loaded the bases on Johnson with one out in the top of the second, but Munenori Kawasaki hit an ill-advised bunt back to Johnson, who got the force at home. Then Dustin Ackley popped out to second.
Nick Markakis, who had four hits in Baltimore’s 8-7, 14-inning victory Tuesday, greeted Millwood with a leadoff triple to open the third. Hardy’47th RBI, on a single, gave Baltimore a 3-0 lead. Hardy later scored on a ground ball out by Wieters.
The Orioles whacked two home runs off Millwood in the fourth, first a solo shot by Mark Reynolds, then a two-run shot by Markakis, giving Baltimore a 7-0 lead.
Manager Eric Wedge lifted Millwood after that carnage, Millwood having allowed seven earned runs on eight hits in four innings. Millwood, who threw 87 pitches, 57 for strikes, has won just once since May 23 and has dropped his past two.
The Mariners didn’t get to Johnson until the sixth when, following a single by Jesus Montero, Seager launched a two-run bomb, his 13th of the season (tying Justin Smoak for the team high), which also gave him his 67th and 68th RBIs.
Wieters got the runs back in the seventh when he hit a two-run double off Josh Kinney, who had an awful frame, giving up two singles and two doubles while recording just one out.
The Mariners loaded the bases with two outs in the eighth when John Jaso walked, Seager singled and Mike Carp walked, but Trayvon Johnson flew to left, ending the inning.
The Mariners return to Safeco Field Monday, Aug. 13 to begin a three-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays. During the home stand, the Mariners will also play the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians.
NOTES: Mariners are also 1-5 against the Orioles this season with a three-game series remaining at Safeco Field Sept. 17-19 . . . Mariners have not won a game in Baltimore since the 2010 season, going 0-6 . . . Mariners have scored just 16 runs in the six games of the road trip . . . Kyle Seager had three hits and went 6-for-15 during the series . . . OF Michael Saunders is 1-for-20 on the trip . . . Former Mariner OF Adam Jones continued to haunt his former club, collecting three more hits . . . Due to conflicts with Seahawks football, six Mariners games, including Saturday, will be heard on 770 AM KTTH instead of 710 ESPN Seattle. The six games are: Aug. 11, 18, 24 and Sept. 9, 16 and 30. Two other games have time changes: Sept. 5 vs. Boston is now a 7:10 start, and Oct. 3 vs. the Angels will begin at 3:40 p.m.