Mariners Game Recap: James Paxton Dazzles, M’s Split Series


Final. 0. 14. 5. 62

The Seattle Mariners (17-20) shut out the Boston Red Sox (18-20) in the series finale, winning 5-0 on Sunday afternoon at Safeco Field. The M’s split the 4-game set with the BoSox this weekend. James Paxton (2-2, 3.59 ERA) notched his 2nd victory of the season after dominating for 8 innings today. Steven Wright (1-1, 4.02 ERA) pitched reasonably well for Boston, but was redivide with the loss.

With the win today, the M’s were able to keep pace in the American League West. Seattle entered the day in 3rd place, and that is exactly where they sit right now. The Mariners trail the AL West leading Houston Astros by 7.5 games.

James Paxton turned in his best start as a pro on Sunday afternoon against the Red Sox. Pax-Man scattered 5 hits across 8 shutout frames. The 26-year-old southpaw fanned 2 and walked 2 today. Over 80% of his 105 pitches were fastballs. Pax did a great job keeping the ball down today, as he retired 11 men via the ground out. Paxton has now run his scoreless inning streak to 20, and his early season struggles are now a distant memory. It is safe to say that James Paxton was the Mariners’ player of the game today.

Carson Smith has been one of the most reliable arms in the Mariners’ bullpen this season, and he finished the job for Seattle today. Smitty hurled a perfect 9th inning to seal the victory for the M’s. The 25-year-old righty struck out 1, and lowered his ERA to 1.02.

Steven Wright had the knuckler dancing today, in fact sometimes it was moving too much for Blake Swihart to handle. Wright allowed 3 runs on 5 hits across 5 innings in his first start of the season. The 30-year-old right-hander tallied 4 strikeouts and walked just 1. Wright keep the Mariners’ bats pretty much at bay today, but his offense could do nothing against Pax-man.

May 17, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager (15) jogs around the bases after hitting a two-run home run in the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

The Mariners were led offensively by Kyle Seager. The M’s Gold Glove third baseman went 2 for 4 today, and launched a key 2-run home run in the bottom of the 8th to give Seattle some much needed breathing room. Brad Miller extended his hitting streak to 6 games when he deposited a Steven Wright curveball into the right field seats. It was Miller’s 3rd homer in the past 36 hours, and his 4th in the last 5 games. Crazy Legs also made a number of nice plays defensively for Seattle. Mike Zunino had a clutch 2-out RBI single in the bottom of the 2nd. The hit broke an 0-10 skid for the Mariners’ backstop. Justin Ruggiano had a nice game for the M’s, going 2 for 3 and working a walk.

The Red Sox had trouble generating anything offensively today, accumulating just 5 hits. Super utility man Brock Holt was the only Sox player to register multiple hits. The 26-year-old was also the only Boston hitter to collect an extra base hit. Holt leads the Red Sox with a .307 batting average in 2015.

Seattle posted a 6-3 record during their 9-game home stand, and in general, they played much better baseball. The pitching staff appears to have turned a corner, and they allowed 4 runs or less in 8 of the 9 games. Offensively, the M’s still have a ways to go to become a playoff caliber team. Brad Miller has been outstanding lately and Nelson Cruz continues to mash, but Robinson Cano and Logan Morrison have to get in gear.

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Monday is a travel day for the Seattle Mariners (17-20), as they embark on a 9-game road trip that includes stops in Toronto and Tampa. However, the M’s will pay the Baltimore Orioles (16-19) a visit on Tuesday night in the opener of a 3-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 4:05 PT from Camden Yards. Taijuan Walker (1-4, 7.22 ERA) will get the ball for the Mariners in the opener. Veteran righty, Miguel Gonzalez (4-2, 2.93 ERA) will toe the rubber for the Orioles. Root Sports Northwest will carry the game locally, and subscribers can watch on connected devices.

Next: Mariners Game Notes: Brad Miller Hitting Leadoff and Playing SS

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