SEGURA COLLECTS CAREER-HIGH FOUR RBIS AND M’S HANG ON
What happened: Jean Segura had a two-run single as part of a four-run eighth and the Seattle Mariners held on to beat the Los Angeles Angels 8-7 at Safeco Field on Wednesday.
Segura’s big hit came as part of a career-high four RBIs – he had a two-run homer in the fifth – and put the Mariners up 8-7.
The ninth wasn’t without drama though as Edwin Diaz struggled again, coughing up a home run to Kole Calhoun, then hitting Mike Trout in the hip with a slider. But Diaz came back to get Albert Pujols to waive at slider off the corner to nail down his fifth save.
Robinson Cano launched his fifth homer, Nelson Cruz continued his hot hitting, going 3 for 4 with an RBI and Ben Gamel picked up a pair of hits.
Starter Hisashi Iwakuma lasted five-plus innings and allowed three runs on five hits and a walk with four strikeouts.
- 2B Robinson Cano turned on a 92-mph fastball and launched it into the right field stands for his fifth home run of the season to get the M’s on the board in the first.
- DH Nelson Cruz followed with a hard hit single that went through 3B Yunel Escobar, but Kyle Seager flied out to end the inning.
- In the fifth, Iwakuma took a liner off his left knee area, recovered and threw out Andrelton Simmons. He took a couple of practice pitches to test it and stuck it out.
- The Angels put two on with two outs in the third, but Iwakuma coaxed a grounder to first from Kole Calhoun to escape without damage.
- In the bottom half, Jarrod Dyson led off with a walk, then Jean Segura hit into a 5-4-3 twin killing. That was big, as Ben Gamel followed with a double but was stranded on Cano’s line out.
- Cruz had another hard hit ball in the fourth, leading off with a line-drive single to center, which went to waste with three straight outs, including strikeouts by Danny Valencia and Guillermo Heredia.
- Leading off the fifth, Mike Zunino ripped one into the corner for a double. After Dyson wasted an out with a sacrifice (in the fifth inning, mind you) Segura crushed a hanging slider for his third homer of the season. Gamel then pulled one into the right field corner for two bags and the Angels gave Cano first base for free. Cruz pulled one through the hole on the left side to score Gamel and that was all for Nolasco.
- The lead didn’t last. Calhoun led off the sixth with a double to right and Mike Trout clubbed one to straightaway center for his eighth. Albert Pujols ripped a line drive to left which brought manager Scott Servais out with the hook for Iwakuma.
- It didn’t matter. Luis Valbuena looped one into short right off Emilio Pagan and Pujols rumbled over to third. Simmons drilled one to the wall in left but Heredia went up and pulled it back at the yellow line to rob a homer with a sensational catch. But Ben Revere lined a single to left and Cliff Pennington did as well to plate Valbuena to tie it at 4.
- Another call the pen brought Nick Vincent. Angles catcher Martin Maldonado bunted Pennington over and Valencia tagged him out. Inexplicably, Maldonado took offense to something and the two had words, and the benches emptied – briefly – to no effect. Two pitches later, Escobar rocked one off the wall for a double and it was 6-4.
- The M’s put runners on second and third with two outs in the eighth, and Servais pinch-hit Taylor Motter for Zunino. Motter drew a full-count walk to load ’em up, and then Dyson’s liner fell in front of right fielder Calhoun to tie it as 6. Segura then got a bouncer past the immobile Escobar at third and two more scored.
- Calhoun homered off Edwin Diaz in the ninth. Relentless. Diaz then had a slider get away from him to plunk Trout, but came back with a fist-pumping strikeout of Pujols to mercifully end it.
It wasn’t easy. Nor was it pretty. But the M’s snapped a three-game losing streak and did so with big production from Segura, who collected a career-high four RBIs. They have to do something about the bullpen – and fast – which is hemorrhaging runs. But at least they showed fight in the latter innings after the debacle in the sixth.
Tweet of the Day
Players of the Game
Hero: Jean Segura. Had the biggest hit and the most RBIs. Sometimes this thing is easy. Honorable mention to the Heredia catch.
Goat: Emilio Pagan. Allowed three runs on three hits and a couple of inherited runners as well. MLB debut? Phew!
Nelson Cruz extended his hitting streak to 12 consecutive games. During streak, Cruz is hitting .465 (20 for 43) with 10 runs, four doubles, five home runs and 17 RBI. The streak is tied for third-longest of his career and marks his fifth career hitting streak of 12 or more games…. Cruz has reached base safely in 21 straight games and 25 games this season, third in the A.L….He recorded a season-high tying three hits.
Los Angeles Angels (15-14) at Seattle Mariners (12-16) at 7:10 p.m. at Safeco Field. RHP Alex Meyer (0-0, 4-91) vs. LHP Ariel Miranda (2-2, 3.81).
What others are saying (and writing)
Lost a bit in the hubbub of the M’s rally to the 8-7 win over the Angels was the outstanding catch by Heredia. Though Simmons’ line drive may not have cleared the fence – others disagree – it certainly would have been a momentum-building double or more. Instead it was an out. … While Cruz is on fire, Zunino is on the hot seat. They mean totally different things.
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