Branyan blast bolsters M’s
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
|Griffey Jr. dh||4||0||2||0||1||1||.215|
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||5||5||2||2||3||1||94||4.26|
|Jakbaskas H, 1||2||2||1||1||0||1||28||5.82|
|M.Lowe H, 6||1||0||0||0||0||0||9||4.03|
|Aardsma S, 11-12||1||0||0||0||0||2||18||1.78|
|Uehara L, 2-4||5||7||4||4||1||3||81||4.37|
IR-S—Hendrickson 1-0. WP—Jakubauskas. T—2:53 (Rain delay: 0:27). A—12,260 (48,290).