BY SPNW Staff 10:03PM 08/18/2015

Game recap: Mariners 3, Rangers 2

Takeaway

Some first-inning fireworks proved the difference as the Mariners secured a 3-2 road victory against the Texas Rangers (box score) on a boiling 97-degree night Wednesday in Arlington. Hisashi Iwakuma won his third game in a row in his first appearance since his no-hitter, crossing the career 500 strikeout mark in the process.

Essential moment

In the seventh with the score 3-2 and the tying run at first, Mariners C Jesus Sucre stepped up as the Rangers started to look like they might be getting to Iwakuma, gunning down Rougned Odor as he attempted to steal second, ending the inning.

Hitters

In the first, Kyle Seager doubled to left and driven in by Nelson Cruz, who swung at the first pitch and bounced it off the left field wall. Seth Smith was the next to convert, hitting his 10th homer of the season.

After that, bats went silent. Seattle managed three more hits, leaving six stranded. Robinson Cano was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts, while Seager finished a team-best 2-for-3 with a walk.

Pitchers

Iwakuma fanned six across seven innings, surrendering two runs on five hits. Iwakuma was efficient, throwing 99 pitches in the heat.

Carson Smith made his 13th save of the season, coming on in the ninth and forcing Prince Fielder to ground out to second before striking out Adrian Beltre. Mitch Moreland hit an easy grounder to Logan Morrison at first, who tossed it to the M’s pitcher.

Words

“When your starter goes out and gives you seven (innings), you match up, you can do things you want to do.” — Manager Lloyd McClendon on the performance of his bullpen, after recent struggles.

Noteworthy

Out 2½ months, James Paxton threw 30 pitches in game conditions at Globe Life Park and reported his sore finger did well. “It felt great,” Paxton told mlb.com. “I just wanted to get the ball down, execute a few pitches and overall have no pain at all, which is what I had. So that was great.” . . . Despite a poor first inning, Texas starter Chi Chi Gonzalez had a strong recovery after the first inning. The 23-year-old allowed only two more hits after the first and struck out seven  . . . Iwakuma retired 13 consecutive batters between the second and sixth innings.

Next

The series concludes Wednesday at 11:05 a.m. PT. Seattle’s Mike Montgomery (4-5, 4.14 ERA) gos against the Rangers’ Derek Holland (0-1, 9.00 ERA) in the latter’s first game in four months since tearing a muscle in his shoulder.


YourThoughts

  • Rj Smith

    So according to Lloyd McMuffin, since Iwakuma pitched 7 innings instead of the 6 the day before by Walker, he was able to “match up” better with the bullpen. That’s his excuse for bringing in Fernando Slocumb in Game 1 & handing away another game. I’m sure if the M’s somehow have a 9th inning lead in Game 3, McMuffin will be looking to Blonde Beard first. Unbelievable.

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  • Lodowick

    He’s a good pitcher and was a good signing. But the time missed over the last two seasons is a problem in determining the size of the next contract, no doubt. If his agent pushes it….he could be gone. We’ll see. Maybe Jack or someone else will just throw money but the less than 20 starts he’ll get this year hurt the team, as did Paxton’s injury. Not like the bullpen meltdown. But still. There’s a lot of issues with this team, hey?

  • Trygvesture

    Squeeked by– this time. The team should be the ripened fruit of Z’s 7 year tenure– and it’s still rotten. Dombrowski went to the Red Sox– M’s not even mentioned as an interested party. Brilliant move from the helm of the Clownship. Again. What does that guy think about when he wakes up in the morning? Nothin to do with improving the baseball club, apparently. What a pathetic geezer he is– more out of touch than he was when he took over.