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Seager, Seattle slug past Halos with 5-run 8th

September 30, 2017

ANAHEIM -- Kyle Seager and Yonder Alonso launched back-to-back home runs to highlight a five-run eighth inning that propelled the Mariners to a 6-4 comeback win over the Angels on Saturday night at Angel Stadium.The Angels took a 4-1 lead into the eighth, but Seattle mounted a rally against Cam

ANAHEIM -- Kyle Seager and Yonder Alonso launched back-to-back home runs to highlight a five-run eighth inning that propelled the Mariners to a 6-4 comeback win over the Angels on Saturday night at Angel Stadium.
The Angels took a 4-1 lead into the eighth, but Seattle mounted a rally against Cam Bedrosian, who faced five batters and couldn't record an out. Mitch Haniger, Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz produced three consecutive singles to cut the deficit to two, and Seager then blasted a three-run shot to center field to put the Mariners ahead, 5-4. Alonso capped the big inning with a solo homer, marking the ninth time Seattle hitters have gone back-to-back this season.
"It has been a frustrating year for us," Seager said. "We certainly expected a lot more out of ourselves than where we're at. But there's still a level of professionalism that you have to go out with and we owe that to ourselves and teammates and everybody else. So it's good to continue to keep on battling."

Closer Edwin Diaz escaped a bases-loaded jam in the eighth and then pitched a scoreless ninth to convert a four-out save. Haniger finished the night with a career-high five hits, while rookie center fielder Jacob Hannemann crushed his first career home run to put the Mariners on the board in the fifth.Left-hander Andrew Albers, who was pressed into action Saturday after Andrew Moore was scratched with neck spasms, pitched 4 1/3 innings for Seattle, giving up three runs on six hits while walking one and striking out five.
Jose Pujols picked up his 1,918th career RBI with a run-scoring groundout in the fifth inning to pass Eddie Murray and take sole possession of eighth place on the all-time list. Luis Valbuena added a pair of RBIs, and Kole Calhoun produced a leadoff blast in the fifth for his 19th home run of the season.

Ricky Nolasco gave up one run over 5 1/3 innings in what will likely be his final start as an Angel. The 34-year-old right-hander yielded only the home run to Hannemann, though he also received some help from Michael Trout, who saved a run in the first inning by nailing Haniger at home with a 94.8-mph throw from center field.

"Ricky is a gamer," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He'll go out there with subpar stuff and do everything he can to keep you in a game. I think we saw some of that tonight. His stuff picked up as the game went on, but he just battles out there."
Nolasco, who logged a 4.92 ERA across a team-high 181 innings this year, has a $13-million team option for 2018, though the Angels seem likely to decline it and allow him to become a free agent.
With only one game left to play, the defeat guaranteed that the Angels (79-82) will finish with a losing record for the second consecutive season for the first time since 1992-94. The Mariners won for just the fourth time in their past 14 games and are one back of the Angels at 78-83.

Diaz retires Trout: After the Mariners scored five runs in the eighth, the Angels threatened in their half inning, loading the bases with two outs after Valbuena walked and Ben Revere and Calhoun singled. With Trout due up, Mariners manager Scott Servais decided to bring in Diaz, who worked out of the jam by inducing a popout to shallow right field.
"It's fun, facing the best hitter in the world," said Diaz, who recorded four outs for his 34th save. "He got me a little this year, but this was my time. I made my pitch and got the out."

Hannemann's first homer: Hannemann was acquired off waivers from the Cubs earlier this month to add some defense and speed to the Mariners' bench, but he took advantage of a rare start to hammer a solo shot off Nolasco that tied the game, 1-1, in the fifth. The 26-year-old's first Major League home run traveled a projected 404 feet to center field, according to Statcast™.
"I hit it pretty good, but I was surprised more than anything," said Hannemann, who totaled 31 homers in 456 Minor League games. "I'm not ever trying to hit home runs. I honestly wanted to just barrel one up for a hit. I've had some little dribbler hits and then barreled up some others that were right at guys. So this one felt really nice."

"It sucks to give up five runs in an inning. It's something I'll think about, but I'm not going to harp on it too much. Unfortunately it's an outing where you give up some runs. You've got to move on and move away." -- Bedrosian, on his rough eighth inning
"We've had a hard time closing out the Angels this year. They've come back on us a few times. So it was nice to flip it tonight. I credit all our guys. We hung in there and kept grinding." -- Servais, whose club is now 7-11 against Anaheim
Haniger became the 14th MLB rookie since 1901 to record five hits and three doubles in the same game and the first since Warren Cromartie of the Expos in 1977. More >

Mariners:James Paxton (12-5, 3.12 ERA) starts Sunday's 12:07 p.m. PT season finale in Anaheim. The lefty is expected to throw about 85-90 pitches in his fourth game back off the disabled list. He's 4-2 with a 2.26 ERA in 10 career starts against the Angels.
Angels: Angels rookie Parker Bridwell (9-3, 3.87 ERA) will start Sunday's regular season finale against the Mariners at 12:07 p.m. PT at Angel Stadium. Bridwell has gone 1-1 with a 4.00 ERA in three starts against Seattle this year.
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Maria Guardado covers the Angels for

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