The Mariners have brutalized every team in the AL Central this season — the main reason for their post, All-Star surge — except for the Chicago White Sox, who continued their mastery of Seattle Friday night with a 5-4 victory at U.S. Cellular Field. The White Sox are 7-1 against Seattle this season and have won 18 of the past 21 played between the clubs.
The Mariners (61-66), losers of two in a row after a season-best eight-game winning streak, and White Sox close out their series with a matinee Sunday.
Kyle Seager bashed two home runs for the Mariners, a three-run jolt in the first inning and a solo shot in the ninth, but in between, the Mariners couldn’t get anything going. They left 11 stranded, twice failing to score in bases-loaded situations.
Dewayne Wise, the first batter Beavan faced, singled. Paul Konerko, who hit the walk-off double Friday night, singled to cut Seattle’s lead to 3-1. The White Sox made it 3-2 in the third when, following a Kevin Youkilis single and a walk to Konerko, Rios singled, scoring Youkilis. Beavan escaped further damage by inducing Flowers to bang into a double play.
Backup catcher Tyler Flowers led off the sixth inning with first-pitch home run. After an Alexei Ramirez double, manager Eric Wedge yanked Beavan and brought on Charlie Farbush, who gave up a single to Wise, which scored Ramirez, giving Chicago a 4-3 advantage.
The Mariners had another bases-loaded situation in the seventh when Ackley reached on a single, Chicago reliever Matt Thornton plunked Seager, and Smoak walked. But John Jaso, pinch hitting, popped out.
In the ninth, Chicago ahead 5-3 with two outs, Seager hit his team-leading 15th home run. But the Mariners had no more rally in them. After a Smoak single, Jaso popped out to end the game.
Beavan (8-8, 5.10 ERA) worked 5.0 innings, allowing four earned runs on seven hits in 5.0 innings. He threw 79 pitches, 52 for strikes.
RHP Kevin Millwood (4-10, 4.29 ERA) will start for the Mariners Sunday, opposed by RHP Gavin Floyd (9-9, 4.56). The Mariners play a four-game series in the Target Center Monday night (5:10 p.m., PT).
NOTES: One day after colliding in the outfield on the game’s final play Friday, neither Michael Saunders nor Eric Thames were in Seattle’s lineup (Thames pinch hit in the eighth inning). They tried to catch a Konerko drive to right center, but the ball popped out of Thames’ glove, resulting in a 9-8 walk-off win for the White Sox. Chone Figgins played center in place of Saunders and Casper Wells occupied right in lieu of Thames. “Thames is OK. Saunders has a little bit of a groin problem,” manager Eric Wedge said . . . Seager’s solo shot in the ninth was Seattle’s 113th home run of 2012 — four more than the Mariners hit in 2011 . . . The Mariners are on a pace for 95 road home runs, which would be the most away from Safeco Field since 2000, when they had 106.