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Mariners not surprised by early success

MLB.com

SEATTLE -- Entering Saturday with a 6-3 record, the Mariners were atop the American League West standings.

That hasn't been too common for a team that hasn't posted a winning record since 2009. Paramount to the team's very early success has been the ability to win close games.

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SEATTLE -- Entering Saturday with a 6-3 record, the Mariners were atop the American League West standings.

That hasn't been too common for a team that hasn't posted a winning record since 2009. Paramount to the team's very early success has been the ability to win close games.

View Full Game Coverage

Each of Seattle's last six contests has been decided by three runs or fewer and five of the last six have been decided by two runs or one.

"It's nice to be off to a good start, but I think it's safe to say this team is better than it has been in the past, and I think we'll continue to get better as our pitching staff gets healthier and we get more depth, particularly with our starting pitching. I think we're going to be a better club," manager Lloyd McClendon said.

Those feelings were shared in the clubhouse -- even though McClendon joked that he tries to stay out of there as much as possible.

"I don't think it's really surprised any of us," left fielder Dustin Ackley said. "I think what we did in Spring Training, we knew that was something we were capable of doing -- winning a lot of games.

Adam Lewis is an associate reporter for MLB.com.

Seattle Mariners