Chris Young And The Long Ball Power Mariners To Win Over Royals

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Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Mariners used a pair of long balls and the veteran right arm of Chris Young to defeat the Kansas City Royals 3-1 Saturday night, avoiding back to back losses and staying above .500.

Young pitched eight economical innings using only 93 pitches, walking no one and striking out three while allowing only three hits and one run. Mike Moustakas tripled in the third inning and scored on a sacrifice fly to right for the Royals’ only run.

Justin Smoak‘s two-run homer in the 4th provided all the run support Young would need. But Dustin Ackley added a solo shot in the 6th for insurance. Fernando Rodney pitched the 9th – relatively excitement-free – to earn his 11th save.

Some injuries of note however as Michael Saunders stumbled in tracking down the triple off the bat of Moustakas. He hyper-extended his knee and was replaced by Stefen Romero.

No word on Saunders’ availability but most likely he will miss a few days. Romero and James Jones are likely to get the start on Sunday.

Also, the home plate umpire Scott Barry was injured. According to Dick Kaegel of MLB.com:

"Plate umpire Scott Barry left the Mariners-Royals game after the third inning Saturday night, apparently with an injury.Barry appeared to have been struck in the hand by Yordano Ventura‘s wild pitch that bounced past catcher Salvador Perez while Dustin Ackley was batting in the Mariners’ second inning.Crew chief Jeff Nelson, umpiring at first base, left at the top of the third inning to change into his protective gear and took over behind the plate. Barry completed the inning before leaving the field.Second-base umpire Marcus Patillo moved to first and the third umpire, Laz Diaz, was then positioned on the left side of the field."

The offense didn’t sparkle – collecting only the three runs – but it was more runs than the team had scored in the previous three games combined. Highlighted in my opinion by the start of James Jones in the leadoff spot.

I correctly predicted Saturday morning that Jones might get the start and bat leadoff. While Saunders had been having some success in the top spot, Jones is more of your traditional, prototypical leadoff man.

He was 1-for-2 with two walks in his first game in the top spot. And if it wasn’t for Brad Miller hitting in the two-hole with his 0-for-4 night, Jones might have scored at least once.

All-in-all it was just what this team needed after some less-than-stellar games. The Mariners look to make it five series wins in a row and become only the 4th American League team to 20 wins (Yankees, White Sox and Rangers all can get #20 tomorrow too) as Roenis Elias takes the hill opposite Jeremy Guthrie.

Finally, I want to wish Sodo Mojo co-editor Charlie Spencer-Davis a very happy 21st birthday. Send him best wishes on Twitter @C14SpencerD

BOX SCORE

Batting

Kansas City

 
ABRHRBIHRBBKSBLOBAVG
Norichika AokiRF400000000.275
Eric Hosmer1B400000000.317
Billy ButlerDH402000000.244
Justin MaxwellPR-DH000000000.138
Salvador PérezC401000002.260
Alex GordonLF300000102.252
Johnny Giavotella2B300000101.182
Lorenzo CainCF300000100.333
Mike Moustakas3B311000000.147
Alcides EscobarSS200100000.268
Totals3014100305

Batting

3B – M Moustakas (1, C Young)

SF – A Escobar

RBI – A Escobar (11)

Team LOB – 3

Fielding

DP – 1 (J Giavotella-A Escobar-E Hosmer)

Seattle

 
ABRHRBIHRBBKSBLOBAVG
James JonesCF201002000.462
Brad MillerSS400000203.164
Robinson Canó2B302001001.296
Corey HartDH411000103.217
Justin Smoak1B411210100.246
John BuckC401000100.259
Dustin AckleyLF211111001.245
Michael SaundersRF100000001.222
Stefen RomeroRF200000001.209
Willie Bloomquist3B300000000.186
Totals29373245010

Batting

HR – J Smoak (5, 4th inning off Y Ventura 1 on, 0 Out), D Ackley (2, 6th inning off Y Ventura 0 on, 2 Out)

RBI – J Smoak 2 (24), D Ackley (14)

2-out RBI – D Ackley

Runners left in scoring position, 2 out – C Hart 1, M Saunders 1

GIDP – S Romero

Team LOB – 6

Pitching

Kansas City

 
IPHRERBBKHRWHIPERA
Yordano Ventura(L, 2-2)6.16334321.112.34
Tim Collins0.21000002.409.00
Kelvin Herrera1.00000201.121.59

Seattle

 
IPHRERBBKHRWHIPERA
Chris Young(W, 3-0)8.03110301.062.63
Fernando Rodney(SV, 11)1.01000001.472.30

WP – Y Ventura

Pitches-strikes – Y Ventura 96-54; T Collins 10-7; K Herrera 10-8; C Young 93-60; F Rodney 13-9

Ground balls-fly balls – Y Ventura 11-6; T Collins 0-1; K Herrera 1-0; C Young 6-11; F Rodney 3-0

Batters faced – Y Ventura 28; T Collins 2; K Herrera 3; C Young 27; F Rodney 4

Game Details

Game Time: 2:19.

Umpires: HP–Scott Barry. 1B–Jeff Nelson. 2B–Marcus Pattillo. 3B–Laz Diaz.

Weather: 58 degrees, Partly Cloudy.

Wind: 1 mph, Out to Center.

Attendance: 29,359.

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