Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

news

MLB News

Gonzales takes first loss in five weeks

MLB.com @gregjohnsmlb

NEW YORK -- Nobody said it was going to be easy at Yankee Stadium against the team with the best record in the Majors, but the Mariners certainly had hoped for better as they embarked on a tough 10-game East Coast road trek.

Marco Gonzales took his first loss in five weeks and Seattle's offense got shut down by Yankees rookie right-hander Domingo German and managed just two hits in a 7-2 loss Tuesday in the opening game of a three-game set in the Bronx.

View Full Game Coverage

NEW YORK -- Nobody said it was going to be easy at Yankee Stadium against the team with the best record in the Majors, but the Mariners certainly had hoped for better as they embarked on a tough 10-game East Coast road trek.

Marco Gonzales took his first loss in five weeks and Seattle's offense got shut down by Yankees rookie right-hander Domingo German and managed just two hits in a 7-2 loss Tuesday in the opening game of a three-game set in the Bronx.

View Full Game Coverage

Gonzales had given up only one home run -- and six earned runs total -- in 38 1/3 innings over his six previous starts, but the young lefty surrendered three blasts in 6 1/3 frames to the Yankees in falling to 7-4 with a 3.80 ERA.

"They're a good-hitting team and I think they had the right game plan tonight, just kind of sitting on offspeed," said Gonzales. "Teams are starting to change what they're doing against me, and that's great because I love that competition. I love that chess game this game provides. I have to do my best to read that and see what we can do to change our approach."

Giancarlo Stanton, Miguel Andujar and Aaron Hicks all took Gonzales deep -- including two-run shots by Andujar and Hicks in the fifth -- as Gonzales was touched for a season-high six runs on eight hits. Gleyber Torres added a solo shot off reliever Nick Rumbelow in the eighth.

Video: SEA@NYY: Four Yankees homer in win over Mariners

"Home runs are going to happen," said Gonzales. "It's just baseball. It's a short porch. It's a boom box in here. I'm just trying to stay aggressive. You can take home runs one way or you can take them the other way. I'm going to learn from it and get better."

Mariners manager Scott Servais said he felt Gonzales actually threw the ball fairly well, but the Yankees adjusted the second time through the lineup and played to their strength with the long balls. The Yankees are now 48-22 on the season, and their 118 home runs is the second-most in the first 70 games by a Major League team since 1954, trailing only the 130 hit by Seattle in 1999.

Video: SEA@NYY: Cruz belts a towering solo homer to left

The Mariners countered with a solo shot by Nelson Cruz in the seventh that briefly cut the lead to 5-2. But after a leadoff double by Dee Gordon led to an early run for Seattle, German retired 17 straight batters before Cruz hit his 18th homer of the year.

"He was throwing everything. He was commanding everything," said Cruz. "It makes it tough when you haven't seen a pitcher, you have to figure him out. But he was mixing his pitches pretty good, too. He kept us off-balance. It was his day."

Video: SEA@NYY: Gordon slides to make difficult running grab

Seattle has still won 13 of its last 18 games and sits in second place in the American League West at 46-27, but the Mariners have lost back-to-back games to the Red Sox and Yankees, the two teams they'll play five more times this week before finishing up with four games in Baltimore.

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
It didn't change the final outcome, but the Mariners have to be encouraged by the continued awakening of Cruz, whose home run was his seventh in the past 10 games. After a sluggish, injury-plagued start to the year, the 37-year-old designated hitter has hit .311 (23-for-74) with 10 homers and 20 RBIs over his last 21 games to hike his average from .220 to .250. Cruz wasn't that impressed with his 18th homer of the season, however, as it came on a 366-foot fly ball that found a friendly part of Yankee Stadium.

"I thought it was an easy pop up off the end of the bat," said Cruz. "It was a good thing it went out."

SOUND SMART
The Yankees are an MLB-best 21-9 against teams currently with records of .500 or better. The second-best team in the Majors against winning teams? That would be the Mariners, now 19-14.

Video: SEA@NYY: Gordon legs out a speedy double in the 1st

YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
Gordon's speed has been a difference-maker for the Mariners this season, and it made a mark early in this one as Seattle's second baseman turned on the jets for a leadoff double on what looked like a fairly routine single to center. Gordon never hesitated in zipping into second just ahead of Hicks' throw and his home-to-second time of 7.64 seconds was tied for the fourth-fastest double of the year in MLB, per Statcast™, behind a trio of doubles by Billy Hamilton of the Reds. Gordon then moved to third on an error and scored on a fielder's choice by Mitch Haniger.

Video: SEA@NYY: Haniger plates Gordon on fielder's choice

HE SAID IT
"What an experience. Probably one of the most fun games to pitch. I was very excited and, obviously, living out a childhood dream of being able to pitch here. I was just trying to have fun and compete and give our team a chance to win." -- Gonzales, on his first time pitching in Yankee Stadium

UP NEXT
Felix Hernandez (6-6, 5.44 ERA) is coming off seven innings of two-run ball against Boston and now will look to continue his history of success in the Bronx when he takes on young right-hander Jonathan Loaisiga (1-0, 0.00 ERA) in Wednesday's 4:05 p.m. PT game. Hernandez will be making his 391st career start over 14 seasons, while Loaisiga makes his second. Hernandez is 6-1 with a 1.41 ERA in nine starts at the new Yankee Stadium.

Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB.

Seattle Mariners, Nelson Cruz, Marco Gonzales