Numbers don’t always tell the story, but these stood out Saturday afternoon at the Great American Ballpark: Cincinnati scored nine of its 13 runs with two outs and the Mariners fanned 14 times and went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position. Predictably, the Reds crushed Seattle 13-4 in a game Seattle led 2-0 and 3-1.
Reds starter Mat Latos figured prominently in the victory. In addition to fanning 11 Mariners, who fell to 38-49, he delivered a two-run double off Seattle starter and loser Jeremy Bonderman in the fourth inning as Cincinnati squared the three-game series 1-1. Game 3 is Sunday at 10:10 a.m..
After Seattle took a 3-1 lead, Cincinnati roared back with three runs in the fourth, two in the fifth, three in the sixth and four in the eighth. To localize it: former Mariner castoffs Jack Hannahan (2009) and Shin Soo-Choo (2005-06) combined for five hits, three RBIs and four runs scored (Hannahan had three hits and drove in two runs and scored twice).
Typical of Seattle’s failure to produce: In the fifth inning, the Mariners put two aboard with no outs and couldn’t score. In the eighth, they had two on with no outs and then a bases-loaded situation but came with nada.
The Mariners jumped on Latos out of the chute when, after an Endy Chavez single to left, Kyle Seager ripped his 13th home run, on a 3-and-1 count, for a 2-0 lead. After Bonderman issued a walk and a wild pitch in the second, Cesar Izturis singled, driving in Jay Bruce to slice Seattle’s lead to 2-1.
In the third, Seager’s sacrifice fly brought home Brad Miller, who walked off Latos on a full count. But Latos committed the ultimate act of baseball redemption an inning later when his two-run double, scoring Hannahan and catcher Ryan Hanigan, tied the game 3-3. Choo knocked in Latos with a single to center as Cincinnati pulled ahead 4-3.
Latos almost turned goat in the fifth, walking Miller to open the inning, advancing him to second on a wild pitch, and walking Chavez. But the Mariners couldn’t capitalize. Seager lined out to Choo in center and, after Kendrys Morales grounded out, sending Miller to third and Chavez to second, Michael Saunders fanned.
From there, it became a Cincinnati onslaught.
When Izturis banged a two-run single off Bonderman in the sixth, making it 6-3, that spelled the end for the Kennewick native, who worked 6.0 innings, allowed six earned runs on seven hits with four strikeouts and five walks (two intentional).
Brendan Ryan drove a ball into the gap in the sixth that allowed Dustin Ackley, who singled, to score from first. But the Reds retaliated with three more in the sixth on Bruce’s two-run double and Hannahan’s RBI single to make it 9-4.
The Mariners made two errors — Miller and Chavez — in the eighth and failed to tag out a runner at the plate, leading to four more runs in what became a major beat down.
Seager, Chavez and Ackley all had multi-hit games, Ackley lifting his batting average to .201. On the flip side, Saunders went 0-for-5 and whiffed three times.
Sunday, LHP Joe Saunders (6-8, 4.74 ERA) will work for Seattle opposite RHP Bronson Arroyo (7-6, 3.50). Seattle will begin a four-game series against the Boston Red Sox Monday night at Safeco Field and follow that with three against the Los Angeles Angels.
NOTES: Two Mariners, RHPs Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma were selected to the AL All-Star squad. Hernandez is an All-Star for the fifth time, Iwakuma for the first . . . The Mariners Saturday traded INF Alex Liddi to the Orioles in exchange for Baltimore’s international signing slot No. 2. Liddi appeared in eight games before the Mariners designated him for assignment June 28 when Brad Miller was selected from AAA Tacoma . . . Michael Morse (strained right quadriceps), scheduled to run the bases Friday at Great American Ballpark, did not, due to wet conditions. However, he is expected to go out on a rehab assignment for a couple of days and join the active roster either immediately before or after the All-Star break . . . Since winning three in a row May 1-4, the Mariners have had nine chances for a three-game winning streak, but haven’t been able to get it done.