June 12, 2009 in Sports

Branyan blast bolsters M’s

Geoff Baker Seattle Times
Associated Press photo

Seattle’s Adrian Beltre scores past Orioles catcher Gregg Zaun.
(Full-size photo)

Tonight: Seattle at Colorado, 6:10 TV: FSN

BALTIMORE – A rocket shot launched some 450 feet deep into the center-field bleachers by Russell Branyan put the exclamation point on what really was two games played here in one night.

There was the game before a 27-minute rain delay, when the Mariners couldn’t hit and saw starting pitcher Garrett Olson take 56 pitches just to get through two innings. And then, there was the latter game, one ignited by a barrage of Seattle hits immediately after the wet weather and ending in a 6-3 win over the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday night.

Branyan capped it all by tagging reliever Brian Bass for the sixth-longest home run in Camden Yards history, a towering fly ball that cleared the fence in center and carried another 20 rows deep. Olson found his rhythm in that “second” contest as well, holding the Orioles scoreless his final three innings as the M’s won for the fourth time in five tries to move back to the .500 mark.

Baltimore had a 2-0 lead when hard rain hit in the top of the third. Starting pitcher Koji Uehara looked great and Olson was having trouble keeping the ball down.

Luke Scott had given the home side a 2-0 lead with a two-run homer in the first inning. But everything changed once the rain delay ended.

Ichiro Suzuki drilled Uehara’s first pitch over the head of right fielder Nick Markakis for a double. Endy Chavez, who singled before the rain delay, went to third on the play and the M’s were off and running.

Adrian Beltre and Branyan each singled to tie the game at 2 and Jose Lopez added a sacrifice fly later that inning for a 3-2 lead.

David Aardsma notched his second consecutive save, closing out the ninth.

M’s complete draft

The Mariners finished their three-day draft by selecting 52 players in all.

Nineteen of their final 33 picks were pitchers, including Pasco’s Jordan Merry from the University of Washington.

Scouting director Tom McNamara says he wants as many of the picks signed as soon as possible, especially No. 2 overall choice Dustin Ackley.

Seattle also drafted second baseman Hawkins Gebbers from Brewster, Wash., and pitcher David Holman, son of ex-M’s pitcher Brian Holman.

Mariners 6, Orioles 3

I.Suzuki rf 522002.360
Branyan 1b 422301.317
Beltre 3b 413110.258
Griffey Jr. dh 402011.215
Jo.Lopez 2b 400101.241
Y.Betancourt ss 501100.242
Balentien lf 200021.222
Quiroz c 401000.273
En.Chavez cf 311010.266
Totals 35612656
Baltimore ABRHBIBBSOAvg.
B.Roberts 2b 411010.286
Markakis rf 401000.287
Ad.Jones cf 400001.329
Scott dh 411200.307
Mora 3b 401000.258
Reimold lf 300010.271
Wigginton 1b 401001.222
Zaun c 300011.200
Andino ss 412001.254
Totals 3437234
Seattle 003010200—6120
Baltimore 200000100—370

LOB—Seattle 9, Baltimore 7. 2B—I.Suzuki (12), Y.Betancourt (7), B.Roberts (19), Markakis (19), Mora (5). 3B—I.Suzuki (2). HR—Branyan (14), off Bass; Scott (14), off Olson. RBIs—Branyan 3 (29), Beltre (26), Jo.Lopez (36), Y.Betancourt (19), Scott 2 (35). SF—Branyan, Jo.Lopez. RLISP—Seattle 3 (I.Suzuki, Balentien, Y.Betancourt); Baltimore 5 (Wigginton, Ad.Jones, Markakis 2, Scott). RMU—B.Roberts. GIDP—En.Chavez.

DP—Baltimore 1 (B.Roberts, Andino, Wigginton).

Olson W, 1-1 552231944.26
Jakbaskas H, 1 221101285.82
M.Lowe H, 6 10000094.03
Aardsma S, 11-12 100002181.78
Uehara L, 2-4 574413814.37
Bass 1 2/3 32232353.79
Hendrickson 1 1/3 10001105.53
A.Castillo 110010160.00

IR-S—Hendrickson 1-0. WP—Jakubauskas. T—2:53 (Rain delay: 0:27). A—12,260 (48,290).

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