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Pitchers benefit from Mariners' hot bats

SEATTLE -- The Mariners' bats are coming alive, and nobody is enjoying the offensive resurgence more than their pitching staff. Over the first five games of its current homestand, Seattle has scored 38 runs and hit nine homers.

That surfeit of run support is welcome news for a rotation and bullpen that are used to working with one of the league's lowest average run support. Even with the recent outburst, the Mariners entered Saturday fourth from last in the American League in runs scored.

"You pitch more relaxed," reliever Danny Farquhar said. "Pitching in such tight ballgames all the time is pretty mentally exhausting. And then to have that cushion, giving up a run here or there isn't the end of the world."

Joe Saunders has benefited as much as anyone from the new Seattle offense. After losing 1-0 to the Angels on June 19, Saunders benefited from six runs in the first four innings of Friday night's 8-3 win over the Angels.

"You never know, on a day-in day-out basis, what's going to happen," Saunders said. "Anything can be different on any day, and it doesn't matter who's on the mound or who's hitting, things can change in a heartbeat. We're doing it right now, we're feeling good at the plate and we've just got to keep it going."

Jacob Thorpe is an associate reporter for
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