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Sports >  Seattle Mariners

Mariners again struggle to score and lose to A’s on consecutive nights

Sept. 21, 2022 Updated Wed., Sept. 21, 2022 at 9:49 p.m.

By Ryan Divish Seattle Times

OAKLAND, Calif. – The thing about a nearly empty stadium is that it can still be loud in different ways.

Instead of a lingering din that drowns out the individual voices, it turns words into a cacophony.

So on Wednesday night at the Oakland Coliseum with a crowd of less than 1,000 people dispersed around the decaying concrete structure, the displeasure of the Mariners fans, the majority in the minimal crowd, could be heard quite clearly in the stadium and on the broadcast.

Complaints aimed at left fielder Jesse Winker and manager Scott Servais echoed – most not fit for print in a newspaper or bathroom stall.

Angry boos of frustration could be heard.

And, well, they were basically deserved as the Mariners were defeated for the second straight night by one of the worst teams – by record and talent – in baseball.

Another lackluster performance at the plate, a rare run allowed from the two best setup relievers and a familiar mistake resulted in an embarrassing 2-1 loss.

With the loss, the Mariners dropped to 81-67 on the season. They’ve dropped five of six on this road trip and have showed only hints of the team that had played its way into the second wild-card spot.

After getting six scoreless innings from starter Robbie Ray while providing him with nothing resembling run support, Servais called on setup man Erik Swanson to keep the A’s scoreless.

Swanson issued a four-pitch walk to the first batter, Jordan Diaz, which wasn’t typical of his outings this season.

Pinch-hitter Vimael Machin then ripped a line drive into the left-field corner. Winker ambled over to the ball to try and keep Diaz from scoring. Instead, the ball bounced off the wall and then of the heel of his glove and between his legs. Seeing that, Diaz started racing for home.

Winker then picked up the ball and fired it past both infielders standing in the outfield grass, serving as potential cutoff men.

Two mistakes, one error and a run for the A’s. This isn’t the first time that Winker’s subpar defense has led to runs. But will it be the last time we see him in left field? By most metrics and observations, he’s one of the worst defensive outfielders in baseball.

With Jarred Kelenic called up, the Mariners might finally make a change that they’ve intended but couldn’t due to various injuries and lineup issues.

After Swanson allowed a bloop single to Christian Pache, putting runners on first and third, Servais called on Andres Munoz to limit the damage to one run in the inning.

Munoz struck out Nick Allen for the first out of the inning, but surrendered a single to veteran Tony Kemp that scored Machin.

Over his six scoreless innings, Ray allowed just three hits with three walks and seven strikeouts. His sixth strikeout of the game gave him 200 on the season. He is the seventh Mariners pitcher to reach 200 strikeouts in a season.

The Mariners offense consisted of Luis Torrens’ pinch-hit homer in the eighth inning. Otherwise, they mustered a couple of hits and never threatened to score against starter James Kaprielian, who tossed seven shutout innings.

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