Thank goodness. The Mariners finally got off the schneid and were able to beat the Houston Astros on Tuesday night on their way to a 6-2 win. With four straight losses heading into the game, the Mariners were running out of time and opportunities to get wins and make it to the playoffs. The win Tuesday was a much needed one to break out of their funk.
It always helps having George Kirby on the mound, even if the hardest he got hit all night was by the fan who threw a ball onto the field and someone managed to hit Kirby with it.
Jokes aside, Kirby threw a great game last night. Five hits, one walk, and four Ks filled out six scoreless innings, and he left the game after 84 pitches, 63 of which were strikes! Getting fairly deep into the game was another positive for the Mariners, who are likely going to reach into their bullpen a decent amount in the Wednesday finale with Bryce Miller on the mound. Every pitch counts, and the Mariners are likely to pull Miller if he gets into too much trouble early.
The offense was able to get it going as well, which was nice after some rough showings in Texas. Eight hits and four walks may not sound like much, but when you can pair timely hitting with some fielding miscues by Houston, it makes for a nice night. It was also nice to see Ty France finally hit a ball over the fence. It was just his 11th dinger of the year, and his first since August 15th, a homerless span of 36 games. Also, you just cannot have your first baseman put together a stretch of .221/.340/.252 with just four extra base hits.
The finale comes today, and the Mariners enter the day three back of Texas for the division, two back of Toronto and just 0.5 back of Houston for the second and third WC spots, respectively. It hasn't been great lately, but George Kirby was able to get them back on track. Let's see if Bryce Miller can keep it going in the Houston finale.