Sports

Mariners look to future as A’s send Seattle to 101st loss

Seattle’s Matt Mangini reacts after a foul bunt in the ninth inning of Sunday’s season-ending loss to Oakland. (Associated Press)
Seattle’s Matt Mangini reacts after a foul bunt in the ninth inning of Sunday’s season-ending loss to Oakland. (Associated Press)

SEATTLE – Nobody with the Seattle Mariners was immune from the strain of a 101-loss season that ended Sunday with a 4-3 defeat to the Oakland A’s.

But there were three young players in the clubhouse late Sunday afternoon – Justin Smoak, Adam Moore and Michael Saunders – determined to channel what they endured in 2010 into something more enjoyable in 2011.

The Mariners played their final games this season hoping to get a better idea if Smoak, a 23-year-old power-hitting switch hitter, is their first baseman of the future; if Moore, 26, can be the offensive-minded catcher they projected since they drafted him in 2006; and if Saunders, 23, can become a regular corner outfielder with offensive production to match.

Smoak finished with a .218 batting average, 13 home runs and a 10-game hitting streak during which he batted .441.

Moore hit safely in seven of the final eight games he played. He finished with a .195 average, four homers and 15 RBIs.

Saunders batted .211 with 10 homers and 33 RBIs in 100 games.

“Hopefully, it’s something that everyone learns from,” Saunders said. “On a personal standpoint, it’s not a year that I’m particularly proud off.”

Smoak, who went 1 for 3 Sunday and hit an RBI single in the eighth inning, said he put too much pressure on himself after the Mariners acquired him from the Texas Rangers on July 9 in the Cliff Lee trade. He suffered through a 2-for-36 stretch in late July before the Mariners sent him to Triple-A Tacoma. Recalled Sept. 18, he batted .340 with three home runs and eight RBI in his final 13 games.

“I had ups and downs and learned a lot this year,” Smoak said. “I feel a lot better where I am now and I’m looking forward to spring training.”

Athletics 4, Mariners 3

Oakland AB R H BI BB SO Avg.
R.Davis cf 5 1 2 0 0 0 .284
M.Ellis 2b 5 1 2 1 0 0 .291
Cust dh 4 0 0 0 0 2 .272
K.Suzuki c 4 1 2 1 0 0 .242
Kouzmanoff 3b 3 1 1 1 1 0 .247
Carter lf 3 0 2 1 1 1 .186
1-Gross pr-lf 0 0 0 0 0 0 .239
Donaldson 1b 2 0 0 0 0 0 .156
a-Barton ph 1 0 0 0 0 1 .273
Larish 1b 1 0 0 0 0 1 .179
Hermida rf 4 0 1 0 0 1 .216
Pennington ss 4 0 0 0 0 1 .250
Totals 36 4 10 4 2 7
Seattle AB R H BI BB SO Avg.
I.Suzuki rf 5 1 2 2 0 0 .315
Figgins 2b 4 0 1 0 0 1 .259
F.Gutierrez dh 3 0 0 0 0 1 .245
b-Jo.Lopez ph-dh 1 0 0 0 0 0 .239
Smoak 1b 3 0 1 1 1 0 .218
2-Langerhans pr 0 0 0 0 0 0 .196
Kotchman 1b 0 0 0 0 0 0 .217
J.Bard c 4 0 1 0 0 0 .214
M.Saunders lf 4 0 1 0 0 2 .211
Halman cf 4 1 2 0 0 2 .138
Mangini 3b 4 1 2 0 0 1 .211
Jo.Wilson ss 4 0 0 0 0 2 .227
Totals 36 3 10 3 1 9
Oakland 001 101 010—4 10 0
Seattle 000 020 010—3 10 1

a-struck out for Donaldson in the 6th. 1-ran for Carter in the 8th. 2-ran for Smoak in the 8th. E—Rowland-Smith (2). LOB—Oakland 7, Seattle 7. 2B—R.Davis (28), M.Ellis (24), I.Suzuki (30). HR—K.Suzuki (13), off Rowland-Smith; Kouzmanoff (16), off Olson. RBIs—M.Ellis (49), K.Suzuki (71), Kouzmanoff (71), Carter (7), I.Suzuki 2 (43), Smoak (48). SB—I.Suzuki (42). CS—R.Davis (11). RLSP—Oakland 5 (Cust 2, Hermida 3); Seattle 5 (J.Bard, Figgins, Jo.Wilson, M.Saunders, I.Suzuki). RMU—M.Ellis, Jo.Lopez. GIDP—J.Bard.

DP—Oakland 1 (Pennington, Donaldson).

Oakland IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA
Braden W, 11-14 5 5 2 2 1 2 76 3.50
Bonser H, 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 15 6.12
H.Rodriguez H, 3 12/3 2 1 1 0 4 37 4.55
Breslow S, 5-7 11/3 3 0 0 0 2 29 3.01
Seattle IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA
Rowlnd-Smith 5 4 2 2 1 3 73 6.75
Varvaro L, 0-1 1/3 2 1 1 1 0 18 11.25
J.Wright 11/3 2 0 0 0 2 21 4.17
Olson 11/3 2 1 1 0 2 23 4.54
League 1 0 0 0 0 0 10 3.42

IR-S—Breslow 1-1, J.Wright 3-1, Olson 1-0. WP—H.Rodriguez, Olson. Balk—Breslow. T—2:53. A—23,263 (47,878).



Click here to comment on this story »





Blogs

CdA garbage transition explainer

Deputy City Administrator Sam Taylor explains the transition phase of the switch for the Coeur d'Alene garbage collection from Waste Management to Coeur d'Alene Garbage Co. Coeur d'Alene Garbage officially ...



When you put a firecracker in a cow pie

I got a note from my friend John Mraz. "Growing up on a farm, our favorite firecracker maneuver was to find a fresh cow pie, insert firecracker, and then light ...





Sections


Profile

Contact the Spokesman

Main switchboard:
(509) 459-5000
Customer service:
(800) 338-8801
Newsroom:
(509) 459-5400
(800) 789-0029
Back to Spokesman Mobile