Ichiro Suzuki is nine hits shy of reaching 200 for the ninth consecutive season, and just four short of his 2,000th in the majors.
As you can imagine, the Japanese media is represented by a gaggle of reporters and television crews.
When he reaches 2,000, he'll almost certainly do it in the second fewest games in baseball history, trailing only Al Simmons, who got his in his 1,390th game. Ichiro is playing his 1,401st tonight. The current second fastest? George Sisler, who need 1,414 games.
Ichiro will face lefty Brett Anderson, against whom he's 3-for-3 in his career. Ichiro's also batting .366 vs. left-handers this year.
It's Luke French vs. Anderson.
Sweeney stays en fuego
Mike Sweeney came in batting .395 in his last 12 games, then hit his sixth home run of the season on a 1-1 pitch from Anderson.
Adrian Beltre walked and, with one out, Jack Wilson singled. With the runners going, Josh-not-Jack Wilson walked to load 'em up.
Rob Johnson fell behind in the count, 0-2, fouled off four pitches, then singled home two runs. Ichiro tapped to first base, but when no one covered, he was credited with an infield single that reloaded the bases.
Franklin Gutierrez grounded into a double play.
In the second inning: Mariners 3, Athletics 0
As the wild card turns
Quick update on the wild card derby. Boston and Texas have both lost their games today and Tampa Bay is in a rain-delayed tie in Detroit.
That means a Mariners win gets them within six games of the Red Sox and four games of the Rangers.
Oakland comes back
French did the one thing you can't do with a lead - he walked the first man he faced, then gave up a home run to the second, who was No. 9 hitter Cliff Pennington.
What should have been an easy inning, facing the bottom of the order, has given Oakland momentum and, in the third, Jason Vargas is up.
Adam Kennedy doubled. Rajai Davis singled him to third base, still with no one out. Kurt Suzuki flied out to center, getting the tying run home and Davis to second base.
Davis stole third. Scott Hairston grounded out, getting Davis home.
After three: Athletics 4, Mariners 3
Adieu, Mr. French
French did it again - walked the No. 8 hitter with two outs, then gave up a bloop single to Pennington. When Kennedy singled home a run, manager Don Wakamatsu yanked his starter and went to Vargas.
After four: Athletics 5, Mariners 3
Mariners fail again
Ichiro singled, his second hit of the night and 1,998th of his Seattle career. Gutierrez walked, and Lopez forced him at second base.
With one out and runners at the corners, Sweeney - who was 3-for-3 - struck out. Beltre grounded out.
In the seventh: Athletics 5, Mariners 3
Junior takes a shot
Two outs into the eighth inning, Josh-not-Jake Wilson walked.
Seeing a chance, Wakamatsu sent Ken Griffey Jr. up to pinch-hit for Johnson, and the Athletics countered with left-handed pitcher Andrew Bailey.
Junior took a strike, then hit a hard ground ball to second base.
In the eighth: Athletics 5, Mariners 3
That should do it
Suzuki singled and with one out, Garicaparra singled.
Against Miguel Batista, Mark Ellis doubled home both runners. Ryan Sweeney's pop fly fell for a double, with Ellis taking third base.
Barton, now batting .203, doubled home two more runs. Pennington, still the No. 9 hitter, walked. Wakamatsu yanked Batista in favor of Randy Messenger.
Kennedy flied out. Davis struck out.
After eight: Athletics 9, Mariners 3
And in the end
Ichiro singled, the 1,999th hit of his major league career.
Gutierrez flied out. Lopez homered, his 22nd of the year, producing his 82nd and 83rd RBI.
Sweeney singled - his fourth hit of the night. Beltre popped out. Hall struck out for the fifth time.
It's a final: Athletics 9, Mariners 5