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Saturday, October 19, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Sports

M’S Find Bullpen Can Get Job Done

By Larry Larue Tacoma News Tribune

If their critics are right, if the Seattle Mariners are no more than two good starting pitchers, a bunch of home run hitters and a mediocre bullpen, the Cleveland Indians would love to know what team blew through here the last two nights.

Twenty-four hours after Dennis Martinez and the Mariners bullpen beat the Tribe, it was the Mariners relief corps that held - and the Indians that faltered - when Seattle came from behind Tuesday for an 8-4 victory.

And did it without Jeff Fassero. Without Randy Johnson. Without a home run.

Since leaving home with a 4-4 record last week, what the Mariners have done on the road is take four of five games, and looked like a full-service major league team in the process.

“One thing this team has proven the last year or two is that it’s capable of winning games on the road against anyone,” manager Lou Piniella said. “This is a good team. It can beat you a lot of ways, at home or on the road.”

For the doubters, Seattle threw together a two-day clinic.

You want starting pitching? Bob Wolcott’s six strong innings Tuesday merely continued a stretch in which Johnson, Fassero and Martinez had earned wins in one turn through the Seattle rotation.

You want offense? Paul Sorrento tied the franchise record with a career-best five-hit night - two doubles, three singles, four RBIs and Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr., Brent Gates and Dan Wilson all added RBIs in the comeback victory.

You want relief pitching? On Monday, Edwin Hurtado, Greg McCarthy and Bobby Ayala closed out the win for Martinez with three shutout innings. On Tuesday, Bob Wells pitched the seventh inning and Norm Charlton got the last six outs to pick up his third save of the season.

And for those who thought the Mariners early schedule of April games against some of the better teams in baseball was a daunting prospect, the Mariners have now completed series against New York, Cleveland (twice) and Boston (twice) and come out of that stretch with an 8-5 record.

That’s good enough for first place in the American League West.

For Sorrento, two days in Cleveland were complicated because his team suitcase had mysteriously disappeared during the quick flight from Boston - though when it finally turned up Tuesday, even Sorrento had to laugh.

“It got here but the hotel valet put it in Alex Rodriguez’s room,” Sorrento said. “Alex forgot to mention it.”

Reacquainted with his clothes Tuesday afternoon, Sorrento also reintroduced himself to the Indians fans who remembered him for his contributions during Cleveland’s 1995 pennant run. Entering the game with a .250 average, he pounded away at Orel Hershiser and two relievers and finished the game batting .333 with 11 RBI.

“Five hits, four RBI, that’s a big night for anybody,” Piniella said. “And we needed them all.”

After six quick innings, Wolcott and Hershiser had fought to a 3-2 Indians lead. Wolcott, fighting a cold, departed having thrown 80 pitches and keeping the Indians in check.

“You come into a series with a team like the Indians and get 12 good innings from your No. 4 and No. 5 starter, you can’t ask for more,” Piniella said.

Though Wolcott didn’t win, the Mariners made sure he didn’t lose by scoring five times in the eighth inning, then once more in the ninth against the Indians bullpen.

Charlton, inheriting a three-run lead in the eighth, cut his earned-run average to 6.75 - down from 21.00 three appearances ago.

Mariners 8, Indians 4

Seattle AB R H BI BB SO Avg. Tinsley lf 5 1 1 0 0 2 .234 ARodriguez ss 5 0 2 1 0 0 .333 Griffey Jr cf 4 2 2 1 1 0 .378 EMartinez dh 3 1 1 0 2 1 .340 Buhner rf 3 1 0 0 2 0 .239 Sorrento 1b 5 1 5 4 0 0 .333 Gates 2b 4 0 2 1 0 0 .294 1-Amaral pr 0 1 0 0 0 0 .417 Espinoza 2b 1 0 0 0 0 1 .286 RDavis 3b 4 1 0 0 1 1 .317 Marzano c 2 0 0 0 0 0 .000 a-Cora ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 .147 DaWilson c 2 0 1 1 0 1 .268 Totals 39 8 14 8 6 6 Cleveland AB R H BI BB SO Avg. Grissom cf 4 1 1 0 0 0 .213 TFernandez 2b 4 0 0 0 0 0 .316 Thome 1b 3 1 2 3 1 0 .293 MaWilliams 3b 4 0 1 0 0 2 .280 Justice lf 3 0 1 0 1 0 .350 Ramirez rf 4 0 0 0 0 2 .214 JuFranco dh 3 0 0 0 0 2 .300 SAlomar c 3 1 1 1 0 0 .564 Vizquel ss 3 1 3 0 0 0 .313 Totals 31 4 9 4 2 6

Seattle 002 000 051 - 8

Cleveland 102 000 010 - 4

a-popped out for Marzano in the 7th.

1-ran for Gates in the 8th.

LOBSeattle 10, Cleveland 2. 2B-EMartinez (6), Sorrento 2 (4), Gates (2), Thome (3), MaWilliams (8), Justice (3). 3B-Vizquel (2). HR-SAlomar (6) off BWells; Thome (2) off Wolcott. RBIsARodriguez (7), Griffey Jr (14), Sorrento 4 (11), Gates (1), DaWilson (4), Thome 3 (8), SAlomar (14). SB- ARodriguez (2), DaWilson (2), Vizquel (4). CS-Justice (1). GIDPEMartinez, TFernandez.

Runners left in scoring position-Seattle 7 (Griffey Jr 2, Gates 2, Marzano 2, DaWilson); Cleveland 2 (Grissom, Ramirez).

DP-Seattle 2 (Tinsley, ARodriguez, RDavis, Sorrento and RDavis), (ARodriguez, Espinoza and Sorrento); Cleveland 1 (MaWilliams, TFernandez and Thome).

Seattle IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA Wolcott 6 6 3 3 2 6 80 5.74 BWells W,1-0 1 1 1 1 0 0 12 13.50 Charlton S,3 2 2 0 0 0 0 29 6.75 Cleveland IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA Hershiser 7 8 2 2 2 1 104 7.63 Assenmacher 0 0 1 1 1 0 5 6.75 MJackson L,0-1 1/3 2 4 4 2 1 26 7.11 Shuey 2/3 4 1 1 1 1 31 14.54 Plunk 1 0 0 0 0 3 13 5.14 Wolcott pitched to 1 batter in the 7th, BWells pitched to 1 batter in the 8th, Assenmacher pitched to 1 batter in the 8th, Shuey pitched to 3 batters in the 9th.

Inherited runners-scored-BWells 1-0, MJackson 1-1, Shuey 2-2, Plunk 2-0.

WP-Hershiser.

T-3:01. A-40,118 (42,400).

Wordcount: 1078
Tags: baseball

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