Well . . . the Mariners continued the pattern they have had in their last two series: one winning game with a high score (v. Yankees 10-2; v. Orioles 13-1; and v. Nationals, 8-4) and two others that are losses with neither team scoring very many runs. If I worked for PBS, I might say that this series was brought to you by the number 4. You may notice a pattern.
Game 1: Monday, June 26: SEA 8, WSH 4
As Julio Rodríguez said after the game, the Mariners were “dialed in.” They had great offense and defense.
Luis Castillo successfully pitched seven innings, allowed three runs and struck seven batters out. Andrés Muñoz, Tyler Saucedo, and Paul Sewald pitched in relief.
Both teams (J.P. Crawford for the M's) hit home runs in the first inning, and the Nationals earned two runs in the second: SEA 1, WSH 3. In the fourth inning, Geno Suárez hit his eighth home run of the season. Then Kelenic singled and moved to second due to a violation. A single from Rodríguez sent Kelenic home: SEA 3, WSH 3.
In the fifth inning, Teoscar Hernández singled, moved to second, and then scored on a Suárez sacrifice fly, Kelenic walked, stole second base, and scored on a Mike Ford single. Kolten Wong doubled and Ford scored. SEA 6, WSH 3. In the eighth inning, Crawford and Rodríguez walked and when Ty France hit a single, Crawford scored. Rodríguez made it home on a sacrifice fly from Hernández: SEA 8, WSH 3. The Nats earned their final run in the ninth.
Game 2: Tuesday, June 27: SEA 4, WSH 7
The Mariners were dialed in until the end of this game. Bryan Woo pitched five strong innings, allowed only two runs, and struck out seven batters. Because the game went into extra innings, relief pitchers Matt Brash, Paul Sewald, Andrés Muñoz, Justin Topa, and Trevor Gott pitched and allowed only two runs over five innings.
The Nationals scored a run in the first inning. In the bottom of the second inning, Hernández hit a two-run home run, bringing Ty France home with him: SEA 2, WSH 1. France, Raleigh, and Suárez contributed to a run in the fourth inning: SEA 3, WSH 1. The Nationals scored in the fifth and then again in the seventh: SEA 3, WSH 3. In the bottom of the seventh, Kelenic walked. Ford singled and Kelenic scored: SEA: 4, WSH 3. The Nationals tied the game when Keibert Ruiz homered in the top of the eighth: SEA 4, WSH 4.
The game was still tied at four apiece at the end of the ninth inning. In the bottom of the ninth and tenth, the Mariners loaded the bases but the batters did not hit. In the top of the 11th, the Nationals scored three runs: SEA 4, WSH 7.
Game 3: Wednesday, June 28: SEA 1, WSH 4
Logan Gilbert was the starting pitcher for the final game of the series , and he pitched six innings with four runs and four strikeouts. Adcock and Saucedo finished the game.
The players did not have much time to recover after the evening game on Tuesday went into extra innings. Whether this was the cause of their listlessness, I do not know. Suárez had one hit, Caballero had two, including a homer, and Tom Murphy had three. Otherwise, there were no hits. Do we have enough strong bats to rely on?
The Nationals’ starting pitcher, Patrick Corbin, pitched extremely well. He pitched for seven innings, allowed no runs, and struck nine batters out. The Nationals' relief pitchers were strong as well. The Nationals had eight hits throughout the game.
So, What Now?
The fans are disappointed, but surely less so than the players themselves. The Mariners were dialed in for the first game, partially dialed in for the second, and mostly dialed out in the third. Now the team goes on to play Tampa Bay. Note that Tampa Bay lost to several of our AL West teams: twice to the Astros, once to the Rangers, and twice to Oakland. They can lose too. They just do not do so frequently. Hang in there, Mariners!