Seager's grand slam helps Mariners break out
CLEVELAND -- The Mariners took advantage of Trevor Bauer's wild pitching, walking five times and scoring more than three runs for the first time since May 26 in a 9-3 victory at Progressive Field on Wednesday night.
Mariners starter Taijuan Walker was effective against the Indians for the second time this season, striking out six in six innings, allowing one run on eight hits and two walks. In a May 29 home start against Cleveland, Walker allowed just two baserunners through eight scoreless innings, striking out eight.
"We just got him out of there early," said Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon. "It was a nice, clean start. He did a nice job."
Bauer ran up 38 pitches in a four-run third inning that included four walks and a grand slam by Kyle Seager. Bauer's outing was over after just 3 2/3 innings -- his shortest outing of the season -- as he allowed six earned runs on four hits and a season-high five walks.
"Every start I seem to have one inning where I just lose command of the strike zone," Bauer said. "If you look at the majority of my walks, they usually tend to come in one inning. I'll walk two or three guys in an inning and just kind of lose feel for the zone. Tonight it cost me and it [stinks]."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Seager slam: Bauer lost his command in the third inning, walking the bases loaded with a wild pitch in the middle, and it came back to haunt him. After issuing free passes to Mike Zunino, Austin Jackson and Robinson Cano, Seager hit a 1-1 offering from Bauer into the right-center field seats for his 10th home run of the season, giving the Mariners a 4-0 lead. It was Seager's second grand slam this year, and third of his career.
"The walks obviously hurt," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "You load the bases and then he falls behind one of the more dangerous hitters in the game -- that's why [pitching coach Mickey Callaway] took the mound visit. You need to make one pitch hopefully and he actually had a chance to get out of the inning. The worst thing that could have happened was the grand slam, and then it got worse from there."
Leadoff Logan: The Mariners didn't take their foot off the gas after going ahead 4-0. Logan Morrison, batting leadoff for just the fifth time this year, doubled in the fourth to drive home Dustin Ackley and Brad Miller, effectively ending Bauer's night. The 27-year-old Morrison has reached base safely in every game this season in which he has led off and is on a career-high 16-game hitting streak.
"I think we all knew it was coming," McClendon said of his club's big night at the plate. "You know, like a volcano, so to speak. [We] finally erupted. That's nice to see.
Hits don't translate: The Indians racked up 12 hits but were only able to plate three runs -- the fewest runs they've scored this season on at least that many hits. David Murphy scored in the fourth inning after an error, and Brandon Moss scored in the eighth inning on a groundout by Zach Walters. A futile effort in the ninth produced one final run, as Mike Aviles scored on a groundout by Giovanny Urshela -- his first career RBI.
"I always want us to get a bunch of hits," Francona said. "The more opportunities you have, the better chance you have to score. If you have one opportunity a night and you don't cash in --I like that we're giving ourselves chances. We just need to cash in."
Sealed in the seventh: Seattle's bats came alive again in the seventh inning as the club added three insurance runs to all but secure the win. After Cano reached on a throwing error by Aviles, Seager and Seth Smith each drove in a run with a double -- the latter of which ricocheted high off the left-center-field wall and narrowly missed leaving the ballpark. Mark Trumbo followed with a long single to plate Smith, giving the Mariners nine runs for the first time since May 12.
"I think everybody's starting to break out," McClendon said. More >
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The Mariners have scored seven or more runs just six times this year. They're 6-0 in those games.
After Bauer allowed the grand slam to Seager, Indians pitchers had allowed a batting line of .313/.333/.521 to opposing batters with the bases loaded this season, having conceded two grand slams. On the contrary, Indians batters have hit just .167/.224/.208 with ducks on the pond, and are still searching for the first grand slam.
Mariners: J.A. Happ (3-1, 3.31 ERA), who hasn't taken a loss since April 17, will start for Seattle on Thursday hoping to build off three consecutive solid outings. When he faced the Indians on May 31, the left-hander labored through five innings, allowing two runs on eight hits. First pitch is 12:10 p.m. ET.
Indians: Right-handed veteran Shaun Marcum (2-1, 5.19 ERA) takes the mound for the Indians, looking to earn a win at Progressive Field for the first time in his career. Marcum has been burned by the long ball, having given up at least one home run in all five of his starts this season, and seven total.
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