Photo credit Jason Miller
After losing 6 straight series, the Seattle Mariners finally get some much needed wins taking 2 of 3 games from the Pasadena Angels of Anaheim. It has become a distant memory of the days of the M’s 13-2 start and the 2 game sweep over the Oakland Athletics in mid-May. The headline would be highlighting the Ysuei Kikuchi vs Shohei Ohtani matchup, but for the woebegone M’s, the wins would be highlighted by a fighting spirit in a team that has every right to phone in the rest of the season.
Jun 7 @ LA Angels W 6 – 2
Catcher Tom Murphy and outfielder Domingo Santana would go yard to power the M’s to a win. Murphy would tally a 3 run homer and Santana would collect 2 solo shots as the M’s chased Angels pitcher Andrew Heaney from the game.
“Credit to our guys, we just keep battling in there, and certainly Santana has got all kinds of power, as Murph does as well,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “They got pitches and didn’t miss them.”
Starting pitcher Marco Gonzales would shake off several bad starts and even his record at 6-6 with a 5 2/3rd inning start allowing just 2 hits and 2 runs. Marco got help from Santana who pulled a ball out of the hands of a fan in foul territory.
“That was the first time I’ve ever seen that where he was kind of wrestling the fan for the ball,” Murphy said. “Kind of reminded me what he would be like as a safety out there, you know, trying to get it away from a wide receiver.”
Finders keepers. pic.twitter.com/Bxv40wpr6s
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) June 8, 2019
Jun 8 @ LA Angels L 12 – 3
Ohtani hit a homerun off of Kikuchi in Saturday’s game that made headlines in Japan. The head to head matchup was a recreation of a high school rivalry at Hanamaki Higashi High School. On the whole though, Kikuchi didn’t have a good night as he was light up for 9 hits and 6 earned runs.
Tommy LaStella’s 4th inning homer followed by Mike Trout’s 429 ft bomb really spelled the beginning of the end for Kikuchi as Ohtani’s homer was more the cherry on top. Edwin Encarnacion, Kyle Seager, and Santana all went yard, but it wouldn’t be enough as the M’s couldn’t keep up with the Angels bats on this night.
Jun 9 @ LA Angels W 9 – 3
Encarnacion would keep his bat lit as he fired off his career #399 and #400 home runs. Encarnacion also would get his 1200th career RBI in the process. Edwin was joined in the hit parade by Daniel Vogelbach, Seager, and Murphy for 6 total homers on the night.
“I feel really good that I accomplished this,” Encarnacion said. “I’ve been waiting for it for a long time.”
Edwin is now the 56th player in baseball with 400 homers and now leads the AL with 20 homers on the season. Even though he is 36 years old Edwin shows no sign of slowing down. Since 2012 he has led the MLB in total homers with 282. Among active players, only Miguel Cabrera and Albert Pujols have more homers.
“What can you say (except) unbelievable,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said of the milestone. “There’s what, 19,000 guys that have played? Little disappointed nothing showed up on the (scoreboard) here, to be honest. But everybody in our dugout knew what was going on, how important it was to him. He’s been a true professional since we got him. Nothing but happy for him.”
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) June 9, 2019