That Eric Bedard trade continues to haunt the Mariners.
It was that 2008 deal that sent, in part, a young right-hander named Chris Tillman to Baltimore less than two years after the Mariners selected him as an 18-year-old in the second round of the 2006 draft.
Tillman is now firmly established in the Orioles’ rotation and, on Sunday, he out-pitched Hisashi Iwakuma in a 1-0 Orioles’ win at Camden Yards. The only run scored on Nick Markakis’ leadoff homer in the first.
It marked the first time in Mariners’ history that they lost a 1-0 game on a leadoff homer.
Both starters were magnificent. Iwakuma (9-6) limited the Orioles to five hits in 7 2/3 innings while striking out seven and walking two. He came within one out of his first career complete game.
Tillman (8-5) was just better in working seven shutout innings before handing the game to the bullpen. He allowed four hits while striking out six and walking none.
Andrew Miller rolled through a one-two-three eighth after replacing Tillman before Zach Britton got his 23rd save by pitching the ninth.
The Mariners were shut out for the 14th time.
Tillman went to the Orioles with outfielder Adam Jones (oh, my) and relievers George Sherrill and Kam Mickiolo on Feb. 8, 2008 for Bedard and a minor-league pitcher named Tony Butler who never reached the majors.
The Mariners got 30 starts over three injury-filled years from Bedard, regarded prior to the trade as one of the game’s top young lefties, before shipping him to Boston in a three-team deal for little in return.
The loss forced the Mariners (57-54) to settle for a 3-3 split on a road trip that began with a 2-1 series win at Cleveland. They started Sunday trailing Toronto by two games in the race for the final wild-card berth.
Iwakuma opened game by surrendering that homer to Markakis — a no-doubter to right — on a full count after not getting a call on a borderline 2-2 pitch. Iwakuma then struck out the next three hitters.
The Mariners mounted a threat in the second when singles by Kyle Seager and Logan Morrison put runners at first and third with one out. Tillman responded by striking out Mike Zunino and Brad Miller.
Neither club mustered much thereafter until the Orioles sixth when Markakis lined a one-out double to center. Iwakuma walked Manny Machado but escaped by retiring the next two hitters.