Seattle Mariners Game Recap: Miller, Ackley Lead M’s to Victory in 11th

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Apr 11, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Seattle Mariners left fielder Dustin Ackley (13) celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the top of the third inning off of Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Sonny Gray (54), not in picture, at Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Bob Stanton-USA TODAY Sports

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It took 11 innings, but the Seattle Mariners won 5-4 against the Oakland Athletics on Saturday afternoon at the Coliseum. Tyler Olson (1-0, 0.00 ERA) picked up the first win of his Major League career after hurling a scoreless 10th inning. Fernando Abad (0-1, 3.00 ERA) was saddled with the loss. Mariners’ closer Fernando Rodney was perfect in the final frame, and fired his second arrow of the season.

The M’s got the scoring started early this afternoon. Dustin Ackley has had a great start to the season, and he crushed a solo home run over the fence in center field the top of the 3rd inning. The AckAttack gave the M’s a 1-0 lead over the rival A’s.

The score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the 7th inning. J.A. Happ had 6 shutout innings under his belt, but he could not make it 7. Billy Butler and Cody Ross led off the frame with back-to-back singles. Brett Lawrie laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt to put runners on second and third with one out. Catcher Josh Phegley tied the game with a single to right field. Things went from bad to worse when Marcus Semien gave the A’s their first lead of the ballgame on a single to right field. Oakland held a 2-1 lead after 7 innings.

Seattle jumped back in front during the top of the 8th inning. Austin Jackson lined a 1 out single to center field in the top of the 8th inning. The single was AJ’s 800th career hit, and it sparked the M’s rally. Justin Ruggiano hit what appeared to be an inning ending double play ball, but in a strange turn of events, shortstop Marcus Semien missed the base and both Jackson and Ruggiano were called safe. Nelson Cruz has been the target of some harsh criticism over the first 4 games, but he lived up to the hype today. Cruz clobbered a Dan Otero sinker deep to left field for a 3-run dinger to give the Mariners a 4-2 lead in the 8th.

Danny Farquhar ran into trouble in the home half of the 8th inning. Mark Canha has given Mariners’ pitchers fits in the first 2 games of this series, and he led off the frame with a single to center field. Ben Zobrist plated Canha on a double to right-center field. Brett Lawrie came through in the clutch, clubbing a 2-out double to score Zobrist and knot the game at 4

Neither team could break through in the 9th inning, and fans were treated to some free baseball in Oakland. Logan Morrison led off the top of the 11th inning with a single on hard hit ground ball to center field. Dustin Ackley dropped down a sacrifice bunt to put LoMo in scoring position with only 1 out. Brad Miller has been on fire over the first few games this season, and he played the hero today. Miller sliced a go-ahead double down the left field line to give the M’s a 5-4 lead.

Brad Miller’s double proved to be enough, and the Mariners held on for a 5-4 win on Saturday afternoon in Oakland.

The full box score can be found here.

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