Mariners Game Recap: M’s Win Wild One, Sweep A’s in Oakland

Apr 16, 2016; Bronx, NY, USA; Seattle Mariners first baseman Dae-Ho Lee (10) in the dugout before the start of game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 16, 2016; Bronx, NY, USA; Seattle Mariners first baseman Dae-Ho Lee (10) in the dugout before the start of game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports /

Final. 8. 96. 9. 62

The series finale between the Mariners and A’s proved to be a very entertaining affair, as both teams combined to score 17 runs on 27 hits this afternoon.

The Seattle Mariners (16-11) managed to hold on for a 9-8 win in a wild one against the Oakland Athletics (13-16) on Wednesday afternoon. The Mariners completed their first series sweep of the year with today’s win. Mike Montgomery (1-0, 2.63 ERA) was credited with the win for Seattle, and John Axford (2-1, 1.29 ERA) took the loss for the home side. Steve Cishek allowed the tying run to reach safely in the ninth, but recovered in time to record his 8th save of the season.

Felix Hernandez had a chance to surpass Jamie Moyer for the most wins in franchise history today, but he failed to get the job done. King Felix was not very effective this afternoon, allowing 8 runs (4 earned) on 9 hits through 4 innings of work. He struck out just 1 batter and did not walk any A’s. Felix’s velocity continues to be a concern, and Oakland hit him hard today. Even the staunchest of Hernandez supporters have to acknowledge that the 30-year-old right-hander doesn’t look the same pitcher so far in 2016.

Oakland got the scoring spree started in the bottom of the third inning. Marcus Semien connected on his seventh home run of the season to give the A’s a 1-0 lead. Oakland doubled their lead in the following frame thanks to a Billy Butler RBI fielder’s choice.

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The Mariners slugged their way back into the ballgame, taking the lead in the top of the fifth inning. Nori Aoki sparked the two-out rally by beating out an infield single. Ketel Marte plated Aoki on a double to left field. Robinson Cano tied the game with a single to center field. Nelson Cruz then unloaded on a fastball, launching it deep to center field for a two-run blast. Cruz’s homer traveled over 430 ft. and landed in the seats that reside some 100 ft. above the wall in center. Even Mike Blowers noted that he had never seen a ball land up there at the Coliseum.

However, the edge was short-lived for Seattle, as Oakland fought back to score six runs on six hits in the home half of the fifth inning. Felix allowed four consecutive singles to open the frame, resulting in one run to score on a Jed Lowrie single. Next, Hernandez charged in to field a slowly hit ground ball in front of home plate, but he was unable to corral it and the run scored without a throw. Khris Davis hit a chopper to Kyle Seager at third base that skipped under his glove and into left field. A pair of runs came around to score on the error.

Scott Servais had seen enough at that point, and he pulled Felix from the game. Vidal Nuno entered with runners on first and second and none out. The southpaw was unable to stop the bleeding, as he allowed both runners he inherited to score on a pair of hits. The A’s held a commanding 8-4 lead after five innings.

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The A’s turned to Ryan Dull in the sixth inning, but the frame proved to be anything but dull. Dae-ho Lee slugged a solo home run to center field to shrink the A’s lead to 3 runs. Leonys Martin then legged out a bunt single, stole second, advanced to third base on a throwing error and scored on a sac fly to make it a 8-6 game.

The Mariners pushed ahead in the seventh inning. Cruz worked a leadoff walk, and was replaced by Franklin Gutierrez at first base after Guti hit into a fielder’s choice. Franklin advanced to second base following a wild pitch, and Seager brought him home on a line drive single to center field. Lee then yanked a fastball down the left field line for a two-run homer. The round-tripper was Lee’s second of the game, and proved to be the game winning hit for Seattle.

Next: Felix Hernandez’s Top 5 Performances

Looking ahead, the Seattle Mariners (16-11) will travel east to Houston for the opener of a four-game series with the Astros (9-18) on Thursday night. First pitch is scheduled for 5:10 pm PT from Minute Maid Park. Wade Miley (2-2, 5.06 ERA) will be on the bump for the Mariners, and Chris Devenski (0-1, 1.45 ERA) will get the ball for the ‘Stros. As always, Root Sports Northwest will carry the game live locally and subscribers can watch worldwide on connected devices.