As streaky as the Seattle Mariners have been as of late, including winning nine of their past 14 games after Sunday’s 4-2 win over the White Sox, it’s easy to point to players who’ve made significant impacts at the plate:
• Chris Taylor: has hit safely in all 12 starts since his major league debut on July 24.
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• Dustin Ackley: 14 runs scored, 13 RBIs, four home runs over the past 22 games.
• Kyle Seager: batting average is .411 since June 14.
Add Logan Morrison, who on July 27 was hitting .201, to the list.
His 1-for-4 performance Sunday with a leadoff single to start a three-run second inning extended his hitting streak to 11 games, which leads all American League active players. His career-best his 13 games.
Morrison is 6-for-15 with four runs in the four-game Chicago series, and before his hitting streak started on July 27 at Cleveland, he was in a 1-for-22 slump over the prior six games.
Manager Lloyd McClendon was short in his praise when asked about the hot-and-cold Morrison.
“He’s getting there,” McClendon said. “He’s getting better.”
Morrison said his approach has been key in recent games.
“I think a little bit of staying behind the ball and not getting so big on my lower body,” he said. “It’s still a work in progress. I’m still not where I want to be.”
McClendon gave no timetable for when outfielder Michael Saunders will return to the Mariners, but noted he won’t make the club’s upcoming 11-day, 9-game roadtrip starting Friday in Detroit as he continues to rehab from a strained left oblique muscle.
“He needs to be healthy and swing the bat well,” McClendon said.
In nine games with the Tacoma Rainiers this season, Saunders is hitting .438 (14-for-32) with one home run and nine RBIs.
BIG THREE LEAD AL IN ERA
With Felix Hernandez’s start pushed back to Monday for the series opener against Toronto, that means Blue Jays hitters will face the American League’s lowest ERA for a starting trio (2.64). Following Hernandez is Chris Young (10-6, 3.27) on Tuesday followed by Hisashi Iwakuma (10-6, 2.85) on Wednesday. The trio has a combined 32-15 record over 65 starts.
MR. MARINER, SCHREMPF HONORED
Former Mariner Alvin Davis, known as “Mr. Mariner” and the inaugural member of the club’s Hall of Fame in 1997, was on hand before the game as one of seven inductees into the 2014 Washington Sports Hall of Fame. Also in attendance was fellow inductee Detlef Schrempf, a 16-year NBA veteran and former UW standout who played sixseasons with the Seattle SuperSonics.
The Blue Jays fly into town for an important three-game series with the Mariners beginning Monday. Toronto, who like Seattle trails the Kansas City Royals for the final AL wild-card spot by 11/2 games, will send right-hander Drew Hutchison (8-9, 4.39 ERA) against Seattle ace Felix Hernandez (12-3, 1.97), 7:10 p.m., at Safeco Field.
Root Sports will broadcast the game.