Just come clean – you know the Seattle Mariners got away with one Sunday at Safeco Field.
A few times with Triple-A starters Dillon Overton and Christian Bergman, they were on the verge of being steamrolled by a big inning, only to escape.
And the Seattle hitters were doing next to nothing against Texas right-hander Andrew Cashner, who controlled things by utilizing his fastball in all quadrants of the strike zone.
But Seattle tied it in the seventh inning, and then Kyle Seager gave the Mariners the big shot with his solo blast in the eighth inning of a 4-3 win.
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Three takeaways from Sunday’s victory
*** Bergman’s new life: After becoming the first pitcher in the PCL to start 5-0, Bergman made his Seattle debut Sunday.
And as manager Scott Servais noted afterward, he settled down the game for the Mariners with his 3.2 innings of stellar relief, getting out of a no-out, bases-loaded jam by giving up just one run in the seventh inning.
Bergman was used by Colorado in a similar role the past two seasons, and got shelled as a long reliever.
The 29-year-old California native said he has now learned how to balance both roles better, and made a favorable impression Sunday by doing what he did in Triple-A Tacoma as a starter — commanding all of his pitches.
*** Seager ready to break out: It seems that all three hitters in the middle of Seattle’s lineup — Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz and Seager — have taken turns this homestand blistering the baseball.
Seager has been a tad unlucky. Even before his game-winning home run, he hit the ball hard with a sharp single to right field in the second inning, and a deep drive that sent Rangers centerfielder Carlos Gomez to the wall in left-center in the fourth inning.
The Mariners’ third-baseman said over the past two days in the batting cage, and in the batter’s box, he has felt in better position to drive pitches.
His home run Sunday matched his entire output for April. Expect that number to rise dramatically over the next few weeks.
*** Rangers miss Beltre: On the flip side, as out of sorts as the Mariners might seem without all of their sidelined starting pitching, the Texas lineup is just as discombobulated without cleanup hitter Adrian Beltre, the former Seattle third baseman.
Beltre has not played an inning yet in 2017 because of a right calf injury — something that is expected to keep him out until early June.
For his whole Rangers career, Beltre has been a high on-base, proven run producer in the middle of the batting order.
Without him, Texas started shortstop Elvis Andrus in the No. 3 spot for just the third time in his career. And Carlos Gomez was used in the cleanup role. Combined, the duo was 1-for-7 with an RBI.
Andrus is the only regular hitting .260 or better (.285).
The Rangers are a mess.