Mariners pound slumping Red Sox again
SEATTLE -- Two of the last three times the Seattle Mariners returned to Safeco Field for a homestand, they rolled in with a tank full of momentum. This time, the Mariners actually seem to be sustaining it.
Seattle matched its season-best win streak of five games with an 8-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night. Home runs by third baseman Kyle Seager and catcher Mike Zunino helped the red-hot Mariners sustain the run of success.
"Our guys are starting to pick it up a little bit," said manager Lloyd McClendon, whose team is 19-20 at home this season and 23-16 on the road. "I've said all along: We haven't had a stretch where our offense has gotten hot. And I think that's going to happen. Our guys are starting to get their legs under them a little bit, starting to warm up a little bit. They're starting to feel it a little bit."
Seattle (42-36) rocked Boston starter Jake Peavy and piled up 10 hits while hammering the Red Sox (35-43) for the second night in a row. Over the first two games of the series, Seattle posted 24 hits while outscoring Boston 20-5.
"We're in a situation where a lot of things aren't working right now," said Red Sox manager John Farrell, whose team lost for the fifth time in six games.
Seager, went 2-for-4 with four RBIs, while right fielder Endy Chavez, the leadoff hitter, included a run-scoring triple among his three hits.
Peavy (1-6) extended his winless streak to 11 starts after another rough outing. In five innings, he allowed eight hits and seven runs, the final four of which came on Seager's three-run homer in the fifth and Zunino's solo shot two batters later. Peavy has not earned a win since April 25, and Tuesday marked the fifth time this season that he allowed five earned runs or more.
"It's not fun," Peavy said. "Nothing's fun about getting beat, especially when you don't do your job and you get beat. It's just frustrating."
With a roster move pending as the Red Sox prepare to activate right-hander Clay Buchholz for a Wednesday start, Peavy's spot in the rotation could be on shaky ground.
"We're considering everything available to us," Farrell said. "You'll know by some point tomorrow. There's a roster move to be made, and we'll take a look at everything."
Seattle reliever Joe Beimel (2-1) earned the win on a night when starter Erasmo Ramirez could not get through the fifth inning. Ramirez had his scoreless streak of 19 2/3 innings snapped on a two-run homer by Boston right fielder Brock Holt in the fourth inning, but that was the only real damage against him. He gave up five hits and five walks issued over 4 1/3 innings.
Beimel came on for Ramirez with one out in the fifth inning and the Mariners leading 3-2. He allowed one hit and no runs in 1 1/3 innings.
Boston had eight hits but left 12 runners on base. Catcher A.J. Pierzynski went 0-for-4 while stranding nine runners on base.
The Mariners jumped on Peavy while taking a 3-0 lead through the first two innings, and then the home runs by Seager and Zunino in the fifth inning put Seattle ahead 7-2. Peavy said Seager's three-run homer, which turned a 3-2 game into a 6-2 game, was the big blow.
"He, really with one swing of the bat, decided the game," Peavy said.
Seager and first baseman Logan Morrison each drove in a run in the first inning, then Chavez tripled in a run in the second. It marked the second triple in as many nights for Chavez.
The game was delayed for almost four minutes in the top of the third inning thanks to a rare double instant-replay review. Seattle left fielder Dustin Ackley appeared to make a diving catch of a Mike Napoli fly ball near the foul line, and umpires initially ruled that Ackley had caught the ball. Baserunner David Ortiz returned to first base on the call as Ackley rifled the ball to second base. Farrell challenged the call, and the catch was overruled.
McClendon then came out of the dugout to question whether Ortiz was passed by Napoli on the basepath. Umpires went back and looked at the replay for a second time but stuck with the original overrule -- leaving Napoli on first base and Ortiz on second.
That threat, like so many others on this night, ended with Boston runners stranded on base. The defending World Series champion Red Sox seem to be freefalling out of contention.
"We've been down this road for a while now," Peavy said. "We, as pitchers, have to do a better job. We're not blaming anybody. We're a 25-man team, and we just have to do better as a unit."
NOTES: Boston announced before the game that RHP Clay Buchholz would start Wednesday's series finale in Seattle. LHP Felix Doubront was originally scheduled to make the start. Buchholz was still on the 15-day disabled list as of Tuesday, having missed 28 games with a hyperextended knee, so a roster move is pending. ... Mariners 1B Justin Smoak (quad) is eligible to come off the 15-day DL on Wednesday, and OF Michael Saunders (shoulder) could be activated as soon as Thursday. DH Jesus Montero appears the most likely option for a demotion. ... Thursday marks the Mariners' first home off day since April 24. ... Mariners 3B D.J. Peterson, a top prospect who was the team's first-round pick in 2013, was promoted from high Class A High Desert to Double-A Jackson on Tuesday. ... Both Boston (UT Mookie Betts and LHP Henry Owens) and Seattle (Peterson and OF Gabriel Guerrero) had two players named to the Future Games rosters Tuesday.