Stuck in a 15-game slump and desperate for momentum, the Seattle Mariners defied the odds this weekend by taking two out of three games from the National League-leading New York Mets.
Mariners-Mets: Game 1
On Friday night, Mariners starter Marco Gonzales dueled with the Mets’ Max Scherzer for seven innings; each only gave up one run and weren’t involved in the decision. When Gonzales was pulled with two outs in the seventh inning, former Met Paul Sewald delivered with a clutch strikeout of Starling Marte to keep the game tied.
In the top of the eighth, Abraham Toro and Adam Frazier produced quality at-bats to draw walks off of reliever Drew Smith, then Ty France (to no surprise) singled to right field to score Toro. The 2-1 lead was all the Mariners needed, as Sewald pitched a clean eighth and Drew Steckenrider shut the door in the ninth for the save.
Mariners-Mets: Game 2
With the bases loaded in the first inning of Game 2, Eugenio Suarez was standing five feet off of second base when taking signs from third base coach Manny Acta, and was picked off by Mets starter Chris Bassitt to end the threat. Starting with that blunder, the rest of the game was mostly an atrocity for the Mariners: Suarez, JP Crawford, and Luis Torrens all made errors in the field, and starter George Kirby was pulled after throwing 89 pitches in just four innings.
Jesse Winker provided a spark with a game-tying three-run homer in the seventh, but rookie Mets catcher Patrick Mazeika launched a first-pitch homer off of Andres Munoz in the bottom of the inning to quickly silence any momentum for Seattle. Former Mariners closer Edwin Diaz struck out the side in the ninth, which was a particularly painful sight to see.
Mariners-Mets: Game 3
Sunday, May 16th, 2022 shall henceforth be known as The Julio Rodriguez Game. The superstar prospect went off with a 4-for-4 day at the plate, two RBIs, two runs scored, a walk, and a mammoth game-tying solo homer in the 6th. Julio’s average has jumped up to .264, and he’s beginning to show signs of being every bit of the 5-tool player he was always projected to become.
Despite giving up five runs in six innings of work, Mariners ace Robbie Ray actually looked quite impressive on the mound: his fastball sat around 95mph throughout the game (easily a season-high) and his slider helped him retire nine batters via the strikeout. Sergio Romo and Paul Sewald were effective in relief, and Diego Castillo broke his slump by striking out Starling Marte and Pete Alonso to bail out a poor ninth inning from Drew Steckenrider.
Up next, the Mariners head north of the border to take on the Toronto Blue Jays in a three-game set between two teams with hopes of competing for an American League Wild Card spot.