Mariners Insider Blog

Game 60 - And another shot at .500

A win tonight would give the team a 30-30 record through 60 games - compared to th 21-39 mark they had a year ago at this point.

What do they need to do tonight to win?

Well, they need a decent outing from spot starter Garrett Olson, but more than anything they need runs - and that means the Mariners need production from Ken Griffey Jr.

Junior has had a significant impact in the clubhouse and the dugout this season, but on the field, not so much.

Batting third, fourth or fifth all season, he's hitting .208 with six home runs and 16 RBI.

Obviously, he's not the only Mariner hitter struggling - all of them have to one degree or another. But when you're in the heart of the order, constantly coming up with the chance to get runs home, not doing so puts a lot on everyone else.

Olson vs. Koji Uehara, Mariners vs. Orioles.

We're off.

Tale of two hitters

In the Mariners first, Adrian Beltre singled with two outs to get Junior to the plate - but Griffey struck out.

In the Orioles first, with a man on and two outs, Luke Scott hit his 14th home run into the seats in left center.

After one: Orioles 2, Mariners 0

Baby, the rain must fall

At 7:58 p.m. a heavy rain began to fall here and one minute later the game was officially delayed as umpires and players fled the field.

This is no sprinkle - it's pouring. Stay tuned?

And the rain hath stopped

What, you call that a rain? Not on the eastern seaboard, where hurricanes roll and fish wind up 20 miles inland, living on housetops.

The game is scheduled to resume at 8:30 p.m. here - that's 5:30 p.m. back in God's country.

Mariners strike back

With a man on and no one out, the game resumed - and Ichiro drilled a pitch off the right field scoreboard for a double.

Russell Branyan singled home one run, Beltre singled home the tying run and up came Griffey with the chance to knock Uehara out of the game.

Instead, he grounded into a fielders choice, leaving men at first and third base with one out for Jose Lopez.

Lopez flied out to center field to pick up his 36th RBI, scoring Branyan with the go-ahead run.

In the third: Mariners 3, Orioles 1

Ichiro on the run

With center fielder Adam Jones playing shallow, Icihro hit one to the wall for a leadoff triple in the fifth inning, and Branyan's sacrifice fly got him home a moment later.

With the bases empty, Griffey blooped a soft line drive single over second base.

In the fifth: Mariners 4, Orioles 2

Now that's a home run!

Mr. Branyan just hit a Brian Bass pitch an estimated 450 into the stands beyond right-center field - the sixth longest homer ever hit in Camden Yards.

It only counted as one run, but it was worth several and was Branyan's 14th of the season. Orioles in the outfield just watched it go, not bothering to give chase.

Beltre's third hit was an infield single, Junior walked and with one out Yuniesky Betancourt doubled - then got hung up in a run down when Griffey was stopped at third.

Ah, Yuni.



In the seventh: Mariners 6, Orioles 2



Limiting the damage

Jakubauskas got into quick trouble, giving up a single and double before getting an out, and if it hadn't been for his own one-out wild pitch, Baltimore still wouldn't have scored.

As it is, they got one and left a man at third base.

After seven: Mariners 6, Orioles 3

On to the ninth

Jakubauskas gave the Mariners two innings, and Mark Lowe just worked a 1-2-3 eighth.

Three more outs, and the world looks more interesting for Seattle.

Why?

A win leaves them 30-30, and the Angels are losing big to Tampa Bay. Should that hold, the Angels would be 29-29, and the Mariners and Angels would be tied in second place in the American League West, no worse than 4 1/2 games behind Texas.

Aardsma time

When a team has a closer, it tends to treat him well - and give him every save opportunity within reason.

Ahead by three in the ninth, Aardsma trotted in for his 12th chance this season to earn a save. Eighteen pitches later, he had his 11th save.

It's a final: Mariners 6, Orioles 3

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