Ichiro opens the night with a nine-game hitting streak, during which he's batting .385, and needs one double to become the only active player with 200 doubles and 300 stolen bases.
On the other hand, lefty Garrett Olson makes his first start as a Mariner, his first since last September and his seventh career start against Boston.
How's he done? You shouldn't have asked. Against the Sox, Olson is 0-4 with a 7.76 earned run average.
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Buckle up. Play ball.
That was quick
Two quick outs, then Olson walked left-handed hitting J.D. Drew to bring up right-handed hitting cleanup man Jason Bay.
Bay hit the first pitch he saw over the left field wall for his 11th home run and a two-run lead.
So the Mariners have work to do already.
In the first: Red Sox 2, Mariners 0
That was quick II
Olson walked Julio Lugo, then gave up a home run much like Bay's to Jason Varitek.
For Varitek, who had only one suitor all winter - the Red Sox - the home run was his fifth and gave him 15 RBI.
For the second night in a row, Boston is out to a four run lead.
In the second: Red Sox 4, Mariners 0
Yuni strikes back
Using the drill he'd practiced hours earlier, Wladimir Balentien singled to right field, taking the pitch the other way. One out later, Yuniesky Betancourt worked the count, got a 95 mph fastball inside and hit it into the Mariners bullpen for his second home run.
Benching seems to have agreed with Yuni's game.
After two: Red Sox 4, Mariners 2
Mariners coming back
Yes, they're at it again. Beltre was safe at first on an error and Russell Branyan doubled him home - with Branyan taking third on the throw to the plate.
No one out, the Red Sox played the infield in and got ground ball outs from Balentien and Kenji Johjima.
On a full count - Yuni took pitches! - Betancourt drew his third walk in two nights. Chavez lined out.
After four: Red Sox 4, Mariners 3
Olson left a pitch up to No. 9 hitter Jeff Bailey, who was batting .159 at that moment, and Bailey made it his second home run of the season.
In the fifth: Red Sox 5, Mariners 3
A word about the pitching
Beckett went seven gritty innings and is line for the win, but the Mariners have to thank Mr. Olson for his efforts.
The 25-year-old had pitched two innings since May 6, then went six innings on 93 pitches tonight.
No, he wasn't All-Star caliber, but he allowed four hits - three of them home runs - and four walks.
Given regular work, who knows? But tonight, filling in for Erik the Bedard, he gave Seattle as much as it could have hoped.
Miguel Batista has worked two innings in relief, and gotten two double plays.
After eight: Red Sox 5, Mariners 3
That's a final
Another entertaining game, and one the Mariners had a chance to win but ...
In the ninth inning against Jonathon Papelbon, Seattle sent up Kenji Johjima, Yuniesky the New Betancourt and Endy Chavez.
Out, out, single.With Chavez at first, the last chance came down to Ichiro, who earlier had extended his hitting streak to 10 consecutice games.
Chavez took second base on indifference. Ichiro grounded out.
Final score: Red Sox 5, Mariners 3