Ever since the Mariners took two out of three from their AL West rival Oakland Athletics, Seattle has not won a series — or even a game for that matter. Losing 13 consecutive games in a row with tonight’s 7-4 loss in Boston.
After being swept by the Toronto Blue Jays, a matchup consisting of Felix Hernandez v. John Lackey looked promising, considering “the king” was 2-0 with a 2.16 ERA in his last five starts against the Red Sox.
With a lead-off single from Ichiro Suzuki in the first, and a steal of first and second; the odds for Seattle looked just that — “promising”. A groundout from Brendan Ryan and single to left from Dustin Ackley put the M’s on the board early 1-0, going into the bottom half.
While things seemed well for the moment, the “Red hot Sox” as their called these days, didn’t let this deficit affect them. Rallying back against Hernandez with two singles, and “a gift from the gods” Boston tied things up. Jacoby Ellsbury rolled over on two pitches, hitting a routine groundball to Ryan making it one away for Dustin Pedroia.
Pedroia, who holds a .444 average in his last 10 games, began tonights affair with a 18-game hitting streak. And it wouldn’t take long to extend it, as he slapped a 2-1 slider to left field to get things rolling.
An Adrian Gonzalez groundout allowed the Sox to reach scoring position. And a passed ball with Kevin Youkillis at the plate, set the table for the burly right-hander — hitting a single to left, tying things at one a-piece.
The game remained quiet in the third, until the “hot-hitting” Ellsbury stepped into the box. Unloading on Hernandez, crushing a bomb into the right field stands of Fenway Park; making the score 2-1. Prior to what is now his 16th homerun of the season, Boston’s center-fielder came off of a series sluggers only relish for. Posting a .500 average with two “hr’s” and three runs batted in against the Baltimore Orioles.
Bats for both teams stayed dormant for the next three innings. As Hernandez retired Carl Crawford, Josh Reddick, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia in order — while escaping jams in the fifth and sixth, trailing by one.
Lucky enough to avoid damage in the middle innings, the king wasn’t so fortunate in the seventh; as Francona’s lineup batted around — putting up five runs in the inning. Saltalamacchia and Ellsbury began the frame with singles, (on the corners) when Pedroia was walked on five pitches — loading the bases for Gonzalez.
He would single to center, scoring two, ending the 2010 Cy Young’s day — surrendering a total of six runs, on 11 hits, while walking four.
Reliever Jeff Gray couldn’t stop the damage, as Youkillis would double, and David Ortiz continued the inning with a single — making the score 7-1 after seven.
Franklin Morales would take the mound for Lackey just in time before being tagged for three runs in the eighth. A Mike Carp homerun, (1), infused with doubles from Miguel Olivo and Jack Cust cut the lead to three. But in the end wouldn’t be enough, falling 7-4 in the opener — en route to 13 consecutive losses in a row for the Seattle Mariners.
With Josh Beckett on the mound for Boston, (8-3 2.12ERA) Seattle’s starter Blake Beavan (1-1 2.70ERA) endures a difficult task — but none the less, takes the task at 7:10pm eastern time for game two.