Heading into their 142nd game of the season, the Seattle Mariners are 55-86 and 13 games behind the third place - yes, third place! - Los Angeles Angels. They're 23 games behind the division-leading Texas Rangers.
And sadly, they've fallen off since this time last year, when they were 72-69 and both Jack Zduriencik and Don Wakamatsu were being hailed as the future of the franchise.
That, of course, was before the signings of Ryan Garko, Eric Byrnes, Chone Figgins, Casey Kotchman, Jack Wilson, Mike Sweeney and Ken Griffey Jr. And before Wakamatsu, his bench, pitching and batting coach were all fired.
Tonight, Felix Hernandez will be pitching for win #12 - and, in essence, to keep his Cy Young Award candidacy alive.
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Maybe Satchel Paige was right. It's no good looking back. Better to look forward to ... something.
- A 1-2-3 inning for 'Fifi,' and Mr. Hernandez has inched his earned run average from 2.30 to 2.28. Hernandez struck out one, his 210th of the year.
- Hideki Matsui walked and, after a one-out fielders choice, Erick Aybar stole second base and scored on Howie Kendrick's single. The Hernandez ERA is 2.32. In the second: Los Angeles 1, Seattle 0.
- Ervin Santana has retired nine of the first 10 Mariners to bat, allowing only a one-out single to Russell Branyan in the first inning. Oh, that Seattle offense ...
- Peter Bourjos legs out an infield single and, with one out, steals second base. Bobby Abreu flied out to left, and Michael Saunders doubled Bourjos off second - his team-leading seventh outfield assist. After three: Los Angeles 1, Seattle 0.
- With one out, Hideki Matsui homered, his 19th of the season. Felix's ERA is now 2.34. In the fourth: Los Angeles 2, Seattle 0.
- Kendrick was safe on a Jose Lopez error. Jeff Mathis tapped back to the mound, but both runners were safe on Josh Wilson's error. Bourjos bunted, and when Hernandez fell down trying to field the ball, was safe - loading 'em up with no one out. Yikes! Alberto Callaspo tapped to Kotchman, who forced Kendrick at the plate. Abreu grounded out, Mathis scoring. Torii Hunter singled home two runs. In the fifth: Los Angeles 5, Seattle 0.
- Chone Figgins tripled with two outs, the first Mariner to reach third base. Branyan grounded out. In the sixth: Los Angeles 5, Seattle 0.
- Felix has 114 pitches and, in the seventh inning, allowed a walk and a hit before manager Daren Brown lifted him. He allowed four earned runs but figures to lose his 11th game. If the Mariners don't score, they'll have produced nine runs in his 11 losses. Amazing. Jamey Wright now pitching. Hunter doubled home two runs - both charged to Felix. In the seventh: Los Angeles 7, Seattle 0.
- With one out, Saunders walked and Wilson doubled when Hunter lost his ball in the lights. Ichiro homered, his sixth, his 185th hit of the season - extending his hitting streak to 12 games. In the eighth: Los Angeles 7, Seattle 3.
- In the ninth, with two out, Adam Moore and Saunders walked. Wilson singled, Moore scoring. Fernando Rodney came in to face Ichiro, who lined out. It's a final: Los Angeles 7, Seattle 4.