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Sports >  Seattle Mariners

Spring training: Jarred Kelenic homers twice, but Mariners can’t rally past Royals

Feb. 26, 2023 Updated Sun., Feb. 26, 2023 at 5:21 p.m.

Ryan Divish Seattle Times

Royals 8, Mariners 7 at Surprise Stadium

Notable

After rallying from an early deficit, the Mariners couldn’t overcome a one-run deficit in the final innings. Royals reliever Jonah Dipoto, the son of Mariners president of baseball operations Jerry Dipoto, pitched a scoreless ninth to secure Kansas City’s third consecutive Cactus League win and pick up the save.

Mariners starter Easton McGee gave up five runs in a first inning he couldn’t finish. He would reenter the game in the second inning and pitch a scoreless frame. The Mariners rallied with two runs each in the third, fourth and fifth innings, taking a 6-5 lead. Kansas City scored three runs off Travis Kuhn in the bottom of the sixth.

Player of the game

In his first plate appearance of the game, Jarred Kelenic smashed a solo homer over the 400-foot sign in right-center field off Royals starter Brad Keller in the second inning on a 2-1 fastball. The blast measured 428 feet with a 113-mph exit velocity.

In his next plate appearance, Kelenic worked the count to 2-1 and hammered a fly ball well over the wall in deep-right center for a two-run homer. Statcast measured the second blast at 438 feet with a 107-mph exit velocity.

Kelenic hit a hard line drive to center in his final at-bat that was caught just above the outfield grass.

Quotable

“Obviously, Jarred Kelenic swung the bat just outstanding today. He was right on it. Even the ball he made an out on, he smoked it to center field. Overall, we got off to a little bit of a rocky start early, but I thought we had some really good at-bats through the middle part of the game. We played some really good defense with some of our younger guys later in the game, showing what they could do. Again, it’s early in spring, but we are seeing some good signs from some key guys and that’s great.” — Mariners manager Scott Servais

Up next

The Mariners will be on the road a second consecutive day, traveling to Camelback Ranch to face the White Sox. They will start right-hander Chris Flexen. Also scheduled to pitch are right-handers Isaiah Campbell and Juan Then and lefties Brennan Bernardino and Nick Margevicius. Chicago is scheduled to start right-hander Jesse Scholtens. First pitch is set for 12:05 p.m. NBC Chicago will have televise the game and it will also be aired on MLB Network and MLB TV (subject to local blackout restrictions). Seattle Sports 710 AM and mariners.com will carry a live radio broadcast.

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