SEATTLE -- Left-handed reliever Jake Diekman was up 0-2 on Mariners rookie pinch-hitter Dae-Ho Lee. The plan was to throw one more fastball above the zone to get Lee to chase for strike three and move on to the 11th inning.The plan didn't work."I didn't execute it at all," Diekman
SEATTLE -- Left-handed reliever Jake Diekman was up 0-2 on Mariners rookie pinch-hitter Dae-Ho Lee. The plan was to throw one more fastball above the zone to get Lee to chase for strike three and move on to the 11th inning.
The plan didn't work.
"I didn't execute it at all," Diekman said after Lee hit a two-out, two-run home run off the fastball to give the Mariners a 4-2 victory in 10 innings over the Rangers on Wednesday afternoon.
"Today just stinks," Diekman said. "That pitch needed to be way better. That was terrible. I put it right where he could hit it."
The loss left the Rangers 4-3 on their first road trip, which took them to Anaheim and Seattle. A 4-3 road trip against division rivals is usually considered a good week of work.
But the Rangers weren't happy with themselves after letting the last one get away, and Diekman was hardly the only one furious with himself. Others were stepping up and taking responsibility for what happened on a day when the Rangers committed a season-high three errors, there were two baserunning mistakes and they were 1-for-4 with runners in scoring position.
"You don't ever want to be sloppy," manager Jeff Banister said. "If you make mistakes at this level, you are going to give up runs. We have played solid defense to this point … we'll continue to play solid defense."
The three errors led to three of the four runs being unearned.
The Rangers led 1-0 going into the bottom of the third when Norichika Aoki led off with a fly ball to deep left against Rangers starter A.J. Griffin. Ian Desmond, who has made a seamless transition to the outfield, got under it but didn't make the catch for an error. Aoki ended up at second and scored on a single by Seth Smith.
"It just kept on carrying," Desmond said. "I was kind of feeling for the wall, and I lost a little focus. It's part of learning on the fly. It stinks that it cost A.J. He was grinding today. There was a lot of grinding."
Another error set up Lee's home run. With one out in the 10th, Nelson Cruz ripped a hard grounder up the middle. Second baseman Rougned Odor was able to get in front of the ball but it got through him for the error. The exit velocity on the hit was 110.4 miles per hour and just missed taking out Diekman before getting to Odor.
"I should have had it," Odor said. "I just missed it. It was a little bit to the right of me, but I should have had it."
There were two baserunning mistakes. Hanser Alberto was on first with one out in the second when Brett Nicholas flied out to deep right. Alberto was running at the swing of the bat and never looked back. He was doubled off easily.
The other was a little more bizarre. Delino DeShields was on first after a one-out single in the fifth when Nomar Mazara hit a double-play grounder to second baseman Robinson Cano. After fielding the ball, Cano tried to tag DeShields on his way to second and missed. Cano then threw to first baseman Adam Lind for the out there. Lind then threw to second to get DeShields, who was unaware that he had been called safe on the missed tag.
"I avoided his tag, but I don't know if it was my mind or what, but I thought the umpire called me out," DeShields said. "I turned around and looked at him, and he had called me safe. By that time the throw was going to second base, and it was too late."
DeShields later atoned for his mistake with an eighth-inning home run that tied the game. But the Rangers eventually made a few too many mistakes and let this one get away.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.