Mariners Game Recap: Guti’s Grand Salami Leads M’s Past Tigers


11. 62. Final. 9. 63

The Detroit Tigers (46-47) could not contain the explosive Seattle Mariners (43-51) on Tuesday night in the Motor City. I say that with no sarcastic undertone, as the M’s topped the Tigers 11-9 tonight. Joe Beimel (1-1, 2.89 ERA) was credited with the win for Seattle, and Neftali Feliz (1-3, 5.79 ERA) picked up the loss for Detroit. Carson Smith earned his 8th of the season.

Typically, Taijuan Walker has to deal with pathetic run support. So he must have been shocked when the M’s hung 4 runs on Detroit in the top of the 1st. Unfortunately, Prince Tai was unable to take advantage of his good fortune. Walker allowed 6 runs, 5 earned on 7 hits across 4.1 innings pitched. He struck out 4 and walked none. The 22-year-old right-hander left far too many pitches over the heart of the plate, and served up a pair of long balls as a result. 2015 has been a terribly inconsistent campaign for the former top prospect. Walker was on a roll in June, but after tonight’s debacle, he has allowed at least 5 earned runs to score in each of his last 3 outings.

The Mariners bullpen did not get the job done on Monday, and their struggles continued tonight in Motown. David Rollins couldn’t stop the bleeding, allowing 1 run to score in 0.1 innings on 1 hit and 1 walk. Tom Wilhelmsen fared better, but was burnt by a solo home run in the 7th. Why Fernando Rodney was called on to pitch in the 8th is a mystery to me. The M’s worst pitcher was predictably awful. F-Rod allowed a 1-out double to Ian Kinsler, then he uncorked a pair of wild pitches allowing Kinsler to come around to score. Thankfully, Carson Smith shut the door for Seattle. Smitty earned his 8th save of the season after recording a 4-out save.

Shane Greene has been a massive disappointment this season in Detroit, and the M’s hit him hard tonight. Greene allowed 5 runs on 6 hits across 4.2 innings of work. The 26-year-old right-hander struck out 1 and walked 2 in what will go down as one of his worst outings of the season. The Tigers’ bullpen did a great job righting the ship, however all that changed when Neftali Feliz entered in the 8th. Feliz was touched up for 5 runs on 4 hits in his lone inning of work.

Jul 21, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano (22) hits a double in the fifth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The M’s exploded on offense tonight. Yes, you read that correctly. Seattle tallied 14 hits as a team, and plated 11 runs. Apart from Dustin Ackley, every Mariner in their starting 9 had at least 1 hit. Robinson Cano‘s hot streak continued, and he finished 3 for 4 with a walk, RBI and 2 runs scored. Nelson Cruz hit his first home run since July 3rd tonight. Austin Jackson and Kyle Seager both had multi-hit nights for the M’s.

Franklin Gutierrez came through with his biggest hit in years this evening for Seattle. Lloyd McClendon employed Guti as a pinch-hitter in the 8th with the bases juiced and 2 outs. The oft-injured outfielder delivered a clutch grand slam to give the Mariners a 3-run lead. Prior to being recalled from Tacoma last month, he had not played in the big leagues since 2013, and had not been healthy since 2010. Gutierrez is a great story, but he has been much more than that for Seattle in 2015. If he can stay healthy, the 32-year-old can be a useful player for the M’s this summer.

Obviously, the Detroit bats were very impressive in their own right on Tuesday. The Tigers were led by J.D. Martinez, as he went 2 for 5 with a home run, 2 RBI’s and 3 runs scored. Nick Castellanos had an impressive night, going 3 for 4 with a home run, an RBI, 1 walk and 2 runs scored. Ian Kinsler continues to cause Seattle problems. Kinsler had a pair of home runs in the series opener on Monday, and he finished 2 for 5 with a double and 2 runs scored tonight. Yoenis Cespedes contributed a 2-run home run to the Tigers’ cause.

The Mariners were compelling to watch tonight. They had fun, and played with enthusiasm. The M’s never threw in the towel, and it payed off. Sadly, this type of effort has been rare for Seattle in 2015. Baseball is a long season, and winning cannot be a player’s only source of fun. This team may not make the postseason, but I would like to see them play with this kind of heart and hustle for the remainder of the season.

The Seattle Mariners (43-51) will battle the Detroit Tigers (46-47) Wednesday evening in Motown. First pitch is scheduled for 4:08 pm from Comerica Park. Mike Montgomery (4-3, 2.51 ERA) will get the ball for the M’s, and Anibal Sanchez (9-7, 4.55 ERA) will toe the rubber for Detroit. Root Sports Northwest will carry the game live, and subscribers can watch worldwide on connected devices.

Next: Mariners Analysis: Welcome Back, Robinson Cano

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