Sooner or later, the Mariners were going to make somebody pay. Their lineup was going to play to its potential and, in a progression to the mean, unload on somebody.
That somebody was the Colorado Rockies.
The Mariners lashed out a season-high 19 hits Tuesday in a 10-4 victory at Coors Field that enabled them to sweep the first half of their four-game split series.
"It’s definitely good when you see runs score," Kyle Seager understated after contributing a two-run homer and a two-run double. "Everybody can breathe a little easier."
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The turnaround began Sunday in Boston when the Mariners averted a three-game sweep with a 5-0 victory. They followed that by holding on Monday for a 6-5 victory over the Rockies.
Then 19 hits.
Jean Segura led the way with four hits, while Seager, Ben Gamel, Guillermo Heredia each had three. Robinson Cano had a booming homer.
The Mariners scored in bunches: three runs in the second inning, three more in the third and three more in the ninth.
"Our offensive guys got it going," manager Scott Servais said. "The quality of our at-bats, squaring balls up…it helps coming into Coors Field. Guys just relaxing."
The Mariners now return home for 11 games — starting with two games against the Rockies in the second part of their split series. They are 13-9 at home.
Three takeaways from Tuesday’s victory:
***Concerns for Cruz: Designated hitter Nelson Cruz started again Tuesday in right field but exited in the second inning because of tightness in his right calf, which surfaced while running the bases.
It’s not believed to be serious. Servais said Cruz should be back in the lineup, as the DH, for Wednesday’s game against the Rockies at Safeco Field.
***The altitude will get you: Lefty Ariel Miranda lasted just five innings before succumbing to the effects of the Mile High altitude at Coors Field. Part of the problem stemmed from fatiguing himself by running the bases.
"When I was trying to throw my fastball for a strike in the fifth inning," he said, "I couldn’t do it. No power. I was tired. It’s very tough to pitch here in Colorado."
Casey Lawrence worked 2 2/3 strong innings after replacing Miranda before the Mariners used Tony Zych, Marc Rzepczynski and Dan Altavilla in matchup situations for the final four outs.
Miranda improved to 5-2. No other Mariners pitcher has more than three victories.
***Play at the plate: It didn’t factor much into the outcome, but the Mariners are looking for answers after Gamel was called out at the plate in the seventh inning while trying to score from third on a grounder to second.
Umpire Quinn Wolcott initially called Gamel safe, but the Rockies challenged, and a replay review reversed the call. Servais then challenged in the belief that Rockies catcher Ryan Hanigan obstructed the plate by throwing his leg out.
The review determined no such obstruction occurred.
Even after the victory, Servais remained incredulous at the second ruling and vowed to seek further clarification of the rule. He said that if Hanigan’s action was legal, then a runner should bowl over the catcher when such a play next occurs.
Bob Dutton: @TNT_Mariners