In the first inning, it wasn’t looking like it was going to be Marco Estrada’s night. He gave up a bloop hit, which Jean Segura turned into a double (with a bit of help from Kevin Pillar, who almost overrun the hop and had to jump back, making his throw into second pretty poor). An out later, Nelson Cruz crushed one to center. That was followed by a single off Chris Coghlan’s glove (it’s damn near impossible have something called an error this week). An easy fly out and and much tougher fly out (nice catch by Steve Pearce on a hard hit line drive over his head) got Marco out of the inning, down by two.
After that, Marco threw 5 of the easiest looking shutout innings you are likely going to see. In total, he allowed 4 hits (only 1 after the first inning), 2 earned, 3 walks and 8 strikeouts over 6 innings. A very nice outing. And, surprise, we scored for him.
On offense, it was the Justin Smoak show. He had 3 hits, a walk, a solo homer and 4 RBI. Well, not a solo show, Steve Pearce hit a 3-run homer in our 5-run fifth inning. In that inning we scored the 5 runs after spotting the Mariners 2 outs. After the 2 outs, Pillar walked, Ezequiel Carrera singled and Jose Bautista walked. Smoak drove in 2 on a bloop single over the second baseman. Then Pearce hit his homer.
Other than the 5th inning, we didn’t have all that much offense. A single run in the first, an inning we could have scored more. Singles from Pillar and Ezequiel started the inning, then Jose Bautista hit a very hard line drive right into Mariners’ 3B Kyle Seagar’s glove. Smoak followed with a RBI single, but Pearce hit into an easy double play to end the inning. Bautista had a hard luck night. He hit a home run distance foul and then flied out to the track in right. He finished the night 0 for 3 with a walk.
Smoak’s solo homer in the 7th rounded out our scoring.
We had 9 hits and 3 walks on the day. Smoak had 3, Carerra and Devon Travis 2. We had 0 fors from Goins (0 for 4), Coghlan (0 for 2 and a hit batter, he took a pitch off the inside of his left wrist), Luke Maile (0 for 4, 2 k, bringing him down to a .048 batting average, but he looks good behind the plate) and, as noted Bautista.
From the bullpen, Aaron Loup worked a nice quick inning. Jason Grilli gave up a hard hit ball to the right field wall. Ezequiel got to it in time, but just couldn’t close his glove on it. An out later, there was a single to put runners on the corners. But a gentle fly to center and a strikeout got him out of the inning. Today’s call up, Leonel Campos pitched a nice quick 9th.
That was a nice way to start the series with the M’s.
Jays of the Day: Smoak (.391 WPA) and Ezequiel (.099). And I’m giving one each to Estrada (.088) and Pearce (.076, for the homer and the nice catch in left, if he didn’t make that catch, it might have been a whole different game).
Suckage: No one gets the number. The low mark was Goins at -.068.
It was a quiet night in the GameThread (until that 5 run 5th, it was a boring game), we had just 516 comments. lalalaprise beat me out by one comment for the win. Good job.
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