On July 1st the Seattle Mariners beat the Houston Astros by a score of 13-2. Mike Zunino was the only starter who reached base less than two times, Kyle Seager homered, and Hisashi Iwakuma stifled the ‘Stros, making sure the M’s got their shot at a blowout. That was quite the win! It was also the last time the Mariners scored more than six runs in a game, until today.
Against Julio Teheran, who is again pitching like one of the NL’s top arms, the Mariners plated six runs. They then added one more against reliever James Russell, just as if to prove that this team is able and ready to score seven runs. In case we’d forgotten. Which, of course, we had.
Things got going in the first, when Dustin Ackley singled and Robinson Cano walked. Seager, hero that he is, smacked a run-scoring single into the outfield. The Braves got three back in the third, but the M’s countered with four in the bottom of the frame. Dustin Ackley led off with a homer. Cano and Kendrys Morales made quick outs, but then Seager singled, Chris Taylor singled, and Logan Morrison crushed one deep into the stands. Four runs in an inning, for the second day in a row!
Chris Young gave the Mariners another nice start, striking out six over five innings with no homers and only one walk. Okay, so maybe his outing wasn’t spectacular all around, given the seven hits and three runs allowed, but what’s key is that Young had more Ks than innings. This is more of that positive regression, and it’s still kind of amazing. Chris Young is amazing, and that’s largely why the Mariners have won so many games.
Kansas City, Toronto, New York, and Cleveland all play today, so there’s a (small) chance that the Mariners will end the day in playoff position. There’s a better chance that the Mariners will end the season in playoff position, as their pythagorean record just keeps improving along with their real-world one. Two wins against a good-not-great Braves team shouldn’t be enough to convince us that the M’s are significantly better than we thought 48 hours ago. Yet we feel how we feel, and right now, we feel good.
You know what’s a great counter to good feelings? The Chicago White Sox, that’s what. That horrible team of stupid jerks is coming to town to ruin everything, and worst of all, they’ll be here for four days. Tomorrow’s pitchers are Roenis Elias and Scott Carroll, with the typical 7:10 start time in effect. What’s a Scott Carroll, you ask? Good question! He’s a 29-year-old rookie starter who doesn’t strike anybody out. You know what these guys do to the Mariners, right? Hold onto your seats!