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Mariners eager for homestand after rough trip

Seattle reeling after going winless in Texas and Oakland
May 26, 2019

OAKLAND -- The Mariners are coming home from a winless road trip of six or more games for the first time in almost a decade, so there couldn’t be a better time for an 11-game homestand at T-Mobile Park . “We need some guidance in the right direction,” starting pitcher

OAKLAND -- The Mariners are coming home from a winless road trip of six or more games for the first time in almost a decade, so there couldn’t be a better time for an 11-game homestand at T-Mobile Park .

“We need some guidance in the right direction,” starting pitcher Mike Leake said after a 7-1 loss to the A’s on Sunday afternoon. “We’re all here fighting, being professionals. It could come from players or management, or both. I don’t know.

“It’s not running like a smooth-running machine. Hopefully, going back to Seattle brings us home.”

Box score

Leake (3-6) settled in and at one point retired 13 men consecutively, but the Mariners didn’t have a comeback in their luggage.

Homers by Matt Chapman and Josh Phegley led to three early runs for the A's, and the Mariners were never able to catch up. Seattle went 0-3 in Texas and 0-3 in Oakland in what was the franchise’s 10th road trip of six or more games without a win.

It had been nine years since the Mariners suffered such indignity, going 0-7 against the White Sox and Twins from July 26 to Aug. 1, 2010. On this trip, they were outscored 36-21.

“I was only here for the second half of the trip,” third baseman Kyle Seager said. “It was a tough road trip for sure. I think getting home helps a lot. You get your rhythm, you get to settle in. That can be refreshing.

“What I know is the effort is there. The intensity is there. We haven’t gotten the breaks yet.”

Manager Scott Servais was ejected in the seventh inning by first-base umpire Mike Everitt, the crew chief. Servais asked for a review of a Mark Canha slide at second base, which took out shortstop J.P. Crawford He got the review, but not the call he wanted. And then with two outs, the A’s scored twice on a Phegley double off reliever Roenis Elias. Suddenly a 3-1 game was 5-1, and that much further out of reach.

“The slide rule is put there to protect the players,” Servais said. “Clearly J.P. got taken out on the play. They saw it different in New York than I saw it. There was no explanation. It was just replay. If you argue replay, it’s not going to go well.”

Curiously, Oakland manager Bob Melvin didn’t argue the call, but the timing, saying, “My argument was that they waited too long. It was after the clock [expired]. You have to let them know, and then if you have a question, you challenge.”

Servais said the goal for the next 11 games at home against the Rangers, the Angels and the Astros has to be simple.

“We have to play good baseball.”

The Mariners could start by scoring first. Since April 14, they are 0-19 when the opponent has scored the first run. On Sunday, the culprit was Chapman, again. He hit a two-run homer in the first inning Sunday, after Saturday’s solo shot. On Saturday, Seattle was able to get even a couple of times. On Sunday, that never happened.

Mariners right fielder Jay Bruce had three hits, including his 300th career double and a solo homer (the 299th of his career) in the seventh, but the rest of the offense accounted for just three more hits.