SEATTLE – Four months ago, Chris Young was on the verge of retiring from baseball. Good thing for the Mariners he decided to give the game another shot.
Young allowed two hits in seven shutout innings and Seattle snapped a four-game losing streak by holding off the Baltimore Orioles 4-3 on Saturday.
“In my last start the team spotted me three early runs and I gave it right back in Anaheim,” Young said. “In the back of my mind I’m thinking, don’t let up, don’t lose focus, continue to make good pitches, one good pitch after the next.
“They’re very capable of coming back and coming back very quickly, as they almost did today.”
Dustin Ackley doubled twice and scored two runs for the Mariners. Robinson Cano had an RBI double.
After the Orioles took advantage of an error by All-Star third baseman Kyle Seager to score three times in the eighth, Fernando Rodney closed it out for his 200th career save.
Young (9-6) walked three and matched his season high with eight strikeouts. Over his past seven starts, he is 4-2 with a 2.12 ERA and 43 strikeouts.
The 35-year-old right-hander from Princeton has won nine games for the first time since 2007 with San Diego, when he was 9-8. His career high is 12 wins in 2005 with Texas.
“He really kept them off-balance all day,” Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. “His secondary stuff was real sharp.”
The 6-foot-10 Young did not pitch in the majors last season, dealing with constant shoulder pain. He had surgery last June that relieved his discomfort and got him back on track.
“He’s a good man and in a good situation here. They’re lucky to have him,” said Baltimore manager Buck Showalter, who was Young’s first manager with the Rangers.
Rodney worked the ninth for his A.L.-leading 28th save in 31 opportunities. The game ended when he caught David Lough trying to steal second.
“I saw him over my left shoulder,” Rodney said. “He was trying to get in scoring position, but I saw it.”