Seattle goes 1-5 on Texas road trip
HOUSTON — Seattle manager Eric Wedge met with his team after another loss to Houston on Wednesday. He declined to talk about what was discussed, but there certainly was plenty of material to go over.
The Mariners lost for the seventh time in nine games when Chris Carter, Ronny Cedeno and Brandon Laird homered to lead the Astros to a 10-3 victory.
The Astros took two of three in the series, and four of their seven wins this season have come against the Mariners, their new AL West foe. Seattle and Miami are the only teams without a series win this season.
“To get beat like that when you have a chance to win a series is just something that we’ve got to do a lot better with,” Wedge said.
Carter hit a solo shot in the second, Cedeno belted a three-run shot in the fourth and Laird also connected for a three-run drive in Houston’s five-run sixth. Lucas Harrell (2-2) allowed a run and six hits while pitching seven innings in his longest outing of the season.
Laird had three hits and four RBIs, and Robbie Grossman became the first player since Carlos Gonzalez in 2008 to hit two doubles in his major league debut. He joins James Mouton (1994) as the only players to accomplish the feat with Houston.
The Mariners closed out a 1-5 road trip. They were outscored 36-8 in the five losses.
“It’s been a bad road trip, and we are not off to the start we’d like, for sure,” said Wedge, whose team is 8-15. “But we have the players in there to be a good team, and that is what bothers me more than anything. We just have to peck away and get this thing turned around.”
Joe Saunders (1-3) had a second straight rough outing, with the Astros getting to him for 11 hits and eight runs in five-plus innings. He has given up 20 hits and 15 runs in his last two starts.
“Just a bad day. That is all I care to say,” Saunders said. “We’ll just turn the page on it, go get them next time and forget about this one.”
Carter opened the second inning with a drive to the Crawford Boxes in left field to make it 1-0.
Grossman collected his first major league hit on a ground-rule double with one out in the third. Grossman, who grew up in suburban Houston as an Astros fan, was recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday night.
Carter drew a walk with one out in the fourth before a single by Carlos Corporan. Cedeno then hit a drive to left for his first homer of the season, pushing the lead to 4-0.
Grossman led off the fifth with another double and scored on Laird’s one-out double.
Harrell retired eight in a row before Dustin Ackley singled with one out in the fifth. But Robert Andino then grounded into a double play.
“We haven’t really gotten the big hits when we’ve needed them or the big pitches when we’ve needed those,” Ackley said. “The last couple of games, we were in position to score some runs early, and we didn’t do it. That is something that we have to work on.”
The Mariners got on the board in the sixth. Endy Chavez and Kyle Seager opened the inning with consecutive singles, and Chavez scored when Kendrys Morales grounded into a double play.
Michael Morse singled before second baseman Jose Altuve ended the inning with a slick defensive play. He made a diving catch on a grounder hit by Justin Smoak and flipped over to make the throw to first from a near sitting position.
Smoak hit a solo homer in the ninth inning.
Seager has a career-high 13-game hitting streak. … The Mariners return home on Thursday to open a four-game series against the Angels. Seattle’s Brandon Maurer will oppose Garrett Richards. … Houston travels Boston where Philip Humber will face Red Sox RHP Clay Buchholz. … Wedge said before the game that Andino would replace Brendan Ryan as the starting shortstop for now. Ryan is a solid defender, but has struggled on offense with a .143 average and is just 1 for his last 25. … Seattle OF Michael Saunders, who is on the disabled list with a sprained right shoulder, could go out for a rehabilitation assignment as soon as Friday.
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