SEATTLE – When Seattle faces the Kansas City Royals, everything looks up for the Mariners.
John Jaso drove in four runs and Blake Beavan pitched into the seventh inning to lead the Mariners to a 6-1 victory over the Royals on Friday night, pushing the Mariners to 5-1 against Kansas City this year.
After taking three of four games in Kansas City last week, the Mariners have dominated the first two games of the current four-game series with the Royals. The Mariners have hit .327 against Kansas City this year.
Beavan (6-6) did his part by pitching 6 2/3 innings, allowing four hits, one walk and a run. Over his last two starts, Beavan has thrown 14 2/3 innings, struck out 11, walked one and has a 1.29 ERA. He is 3-0 since being recalled from Triple-A Tacoma July 17.
Beavan leaned on his fastball and slider to hold down the Royals after working to regain his command in the minor leagues.
“He’s executing pitches a lot better,” Seattle manager Eric Wedge said. “When he’s missing, he’s missing in the right spots, and I think that goes a long way.”
Kansas City starter Jeremy Guthrie (0-2) remained winless with Kansas City and is 3-11 on the season between Colorado and the Royals. He threw 5 2/3 innings Friday night, allowing six runs and 11 hits. He struck out four and walked none.
Mike Carp, who is 5 for 8 in the last two games against Kansas City, hit his fifth homer in the sixth inning to put Seattle up 6-1. Brendan Ryan singled two batters later to knock out Guthrie, who was in trouble from the start.
Jaso hit his fifth home run of the season off a teetering Guthrie in the first. Michael Saunders legged out an infield single and Jesus Montero flipped an off-speed pitch over the shortstop ahead of Jaso’s shot into the stands in right. The Mariners have scored in the first or second inning in 11 of the last 12 games.
Jaso continues to impress Wedge.
“One thing you know you’re going to get from him is a quality at-bat,” Wedge said. “If you look at his at-bats, that’s what we’re looking to do with all of our guys.”
Guthrie allowed five hits and three runs in the first inning. He gave up four hits over five innings in his first outing with Kansas City.
The Royals got a run back when Billy Butler scored on Salvador Perez’s sacrifice fly in the second. Beavan advanced Butler, who singled, to third with consecutive wild pitches before Perez looped a fly ball to right. Beavan had one wild pitch in his previous 77 1/3 innings.
But the Mariners kept rolling in the second. Dustin Ackley continued his recent turnaround by hitting a double into the gap to score Ryan, who had singled. A groundout by Saunders moved Ackley to third and Jaso’s sacrifice fly made it 5-1.
The Royals had runners on first and second with no outs in the fifth, but Beavan came back to strike out Jeff Francoeur and Eric Hosmer before Chris Getz flied out to left.
“We just haven’t been swinging the bats lately,” Yost said. “You can’t expect to be successful every night when you are down four, five, or six runs in the first two innings.”
The Royals have six hits in the first two games of this series.
Mariners starter Hisashi Iwakuma is expected to rejoin the team in time for his Monday start. He’s in Japan for personal reasons. … Seattle OF Franklin Gutierrez continues to progress from a mild concussion suffered June 29. Wedge said there is still no timetable for Gu