Fernando Rodney Walks In Go Ahead Run, Mariners Lose


Last night, in front of a sellout crowd at Safeco Field, Felix Hernandez and Sonny Gray were locked into a classic pitcher’s duel. The Mariners ultimately lost in the 10th inning, 3-2, but it’s how they lost that has me upset.

Fernando Rodney, who has had more good times than bad this season – fans must remember this – walked four batters in the 10th, pushing the eventual winning run across.

But let’s back up just a bit.

In the bottom of the 7th, after Felix had given up an RBI single to give the A’s the lead at 2-1 in the top half, Robinson Cano delivers a bomb to right to tie it back up at 2-2.

With Felix at 95 pitches thrown, manager Lloyd McClendon decides to go to his bullpen. Not a bad choice.

Joe Beimel is the first to enter, getting Sam Fuld to ground out to first. Mac pulled him after the one batter, going for Tom Wilhelmsen to face Josh Donaldson. Tom walked Donaldson on five pitches and Mac came to pull him.

Enter Charlie Furbush. Furbush struck out Jonny Gomes and then walked Brandon Moss.

Enter Danny Farquhar. Farq struck out Jed Lowrie to end the inning. But four pitchers were used to throw a combined 40 pitches in that inning to get three outs. Why couldn’t Beimel have pitched the entire inning?

So, that misuse of the bullpen led to Mac going for Rodney in the 10th. Still tied at 2-2. Rodney walks Coco Crisp who is then sacrificed to 2nd on a bunt by Sam Fuld. One on, one out.

Mac then decides that they should intentionally walk Josh Donaldson, setting up the force play. I am NOT a fan of walks, especially intentional ones.

This is baseball. The best hitter your pitcher is going to face, will beat you only 1 in 3 times. Donaldson already homered in the game, the odds were against him doing damage again in this one. But sure, let’s walk him.

Alberto Callaspo came in to pinch hit for Jonny Gomes and Callaspo walked to load the bases for Brandon Moss.

Moss struck out looking on a borderline, high pitch, that most umps won’t give a pitcher who can’t find the zone. So now, the bases are loaded with two outs.

–Side note– I’m not exactly sure why there were fans chanting SEA-HAWKS at the game last night. But it was pretty uncalled for. The Mariners are in meaningful September games for the first time in over a decade and the fans at Safeco are chanting Seahawks? Embarrassing.

Speaking of embarrassing, back to Rodney. With two down, Jed Lowrie is up. He’s 0-for-4 with two K’s for the night. Rodney walks him to push the go ahead run across. Josh Reddick then lined out to short to end the inning.

Fernando Rodney’s final line? 1 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 4 BB, 1 K, 32 pitches (10 strikes).

Now, I realize that if Rodney wasn’t the Mariners closer, the M’s may not be in the position they are in. But I also realize that a big part of this meltdown Saturday is on Lloyd McClendon, who burned through bullpen pieces like matchsticks, for no good reason.

The M’s are now a full game out of the 2nd AL wild-card spot behind the Kansas City Royals. They are a game and a half back of Oakland. The M’s can still win the series today, but on a night the M’s had Felix on the mound, they should’ve had this one.




Coco CrispCF411001103.254
Sam FuldLF400000102.245
Josh Donaldson3B311112001.255
Adam DunnDH300000101.223
Jonny GómesPH-DH100000101.238
Alberto CallaspoPH-DH000001000.228
Brandon Moss1B401001203.239
Jed LowrieSS400101203.245
Josh ReddickRF511000103.245
Derek NorrisC401000201.271
Eric Sogard2B403100011.229


2B – J Reddick (14, F Hernandez)

HR – J Donaldson (27, 6th inning off F Hernandez 0 on, 1 Out)

S – S Fuld

RBI – J Donaldson (95), J Lowrie (46), E Sogard (21)

2-out RBI – J Lowrie, E Sogard

Runners left in scoring position, 2 out – C Crisp 1, J Lowrie 1, J Reddick 2

Team LOB – 10


SB – E Sogard (11, 2nd base off F Hernandez/M Zunino)

CS – E Sogard (3, 2nd base by D Farquhar/M Zunino)


E – S Gray (3, throw)

DP – 3 (E Sogard-J Lowrie-B Moss, E Sogard-B Moss, B Moss-J Lowrie-S Gray)


Austin JacksonCF400000302.263
Endy ChávezLF401000000.274
Robinson Canó2B411110000.322
Kendrys MoralesDH300001201.223
Kyle Seager3B400000001.272
Logan Morrison1B200001100.240
Corey HartPH100000100.201
Mike ZuninoC400000001.195
James JonesRF312000000.254
Chris TaylorSS301100201.296


3B – J Jones (5, S Gray)

HR – R Cano (14, 7th inning off S Gray 0 on, 0 Out)

RBI – R Cano (77), C Taylor (6)

Runners left in scoring position, 2 out – A Jackson 1, K Morales 1

GIDP – A Jackson, K Seager, M Zunino

Team LOB – 2



Sonny Gray8.05222711.213.18
Luke Gregerson(W, 5-4)1.00000101.002.18
Sean Doolittle(SV, 21)1.00000100.692.24


Félix Hernández7.07220810.922.14
Joe Beimel0.10000001.141.96
Tom Wilhelmsen0.00001001.012.06
Charlie Furbush0.10001101.183.60
Danny Farquhar1.11000101.102.33
Fernando Rodney(L, 1-6)1.00114101.352.60

WP – F Hernandez 2

IBB – J Donaldson (by F Rodney)

Pitches-strikes – S Gray 96-59; L Gregerson 10-8; S Doolittle 9-7; F Hernandez 95-58; J Beimel 5-3; T Wilhelmsen 5-1; C Furbush 13-7; D Farquhar 17-13; F Rodney 32-10

Ground balls-fly balls – S Gray 13-5; L Gregerson 2-0; S Doolittle 0-2; F Hernandez 8-4; J Beimel 1-0; T Wilhelmsen 0-0; C Furbush 0-0; D Farquhar 3-0; F Rodney 0-0

Batters faced – S Gray 28; L Gregerson 3; S Doolittle 3; F Hernandez 28; J Beimel 1; T Wilhelmsen 1; C Furbush 2; D Farquhar 4; F Rodney 7

Game Details

Game Time: 3:20.

Umpires: HP–Mike Muchlinski. 1B–Jim Wolf. 2B–Brian Gorman. 3B–David Rackley.

Weather: 80 degrees, Clear.

Wind: 2 mph, In From Right.

Attendance: 43,913.