In the first three-game series of the Seattle Mariners’ current nine-game road trip, the M’s started strong with an 8-4 win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday, but subsequently fell in one-run games on Wednesday and Thursday.
After sweeping the Rays in a thrilling four-game set in June of last season, the Mariners couldn’t quite get their offense going in their final two games of this series against the notoriously analytical Rays. Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash, the reigning American League Manager of the Year, utilized relievers well to stymie Mariners hitters in the rubber match, only allowing one run during their “bullpen day”.
In their series-opening victory on Tuesday night, the Mariners took advantage of two Rays errors in the fourth inning to score seven runs, then capitalized on another error in the sixth to score once again. Logan Gilbert, all of a sudden an ace in Seattle’s rotation, went 5.2 innings while striking out seven and not allowing a run. Adam Frazier plated three with a bases-clearing double in the fourth, adding to his impressive 10 RBIs in the leadoff hole.
The Mariners dealt with an unfortunate circumstance in Game 2 when starter Marco Gonzales was struck by a line drive in the first inning, which removed Gonzales from the game and forced the team to use four more pitchers over the course of the contest. Most importantly, X-Rays came back negative on Gonzales’s wrist, so it’s unlikely he’ll miss much time (if any).
The highlight of Game 3 came when Julio Rodriguez was, once again, called out looking on a pitch outside of the strike zone, causing manager Scott Servais to unleash three weeks’ worth of rage on the home plate umpire and receive an ejection.
Next up, the Mariners travel a few hours southeast to Miami, where they will face the Marlins in a three-game series for the first time since 2017.