Mariners Fall in Extras Again, 6-5 - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mariners Fall in Extras Again, 6-5

by SeattleMariners.com

SEATTLE -- Every time the Royals took a lead on Monday night the Mariners answered back. But in the 12th inning, they had no response for Salvador Perez's RBI double, falling, 6-5, in front of the few remaining members of the announced crowd of 12,798 at Safeco Field. It was the 237th extra-inning game of the year, tying the MLB record.

The Mariners appeared to win it in the 10th when Kyle Seager tagged at third and dashed for home on pinch-hitter Endy Chavez's fly. But home-plate umpire Vic Carapazza correctly called him out at the plate, sending the game to the 11th inning despite Seager's protestations.

Neither Franklin Gutierrez nor Michael Saunders began Monday in the Mariners starting lineup. That didn't stop them from hitting back-to-back eighth-inning home runs to tie the game at 5. Gutierrez entered the game as a defensive replacement in the top of the inning, while Saunders was used in the seventh as a pinch-runner for Justin Smoak.

Sloppy fielding and four combined errors overshadowed a stellar duel between rookie pitchersBrandon Maurer and Yordano Ventura. The lead changed five times in a game in which the starters gave up only one earned run apiece.

Maurer has now gone eight straight starts without a win, dating back to April 30. After beginning the year in the Mariners rotation, the Mariners 2008 23rd-round Draft pick struggled and was sent to Tacoma. He was recalled on July 27 to bolster the Seattle bullpen, and given his starting spot back in September when the club shut down fellow rookie Taijuan Walker.

He didn't disappoint against the Royals, allowing just one earned run in seven innings pitched while striking out six. The 23-year-old allowed three straight singles with one out in the fourth to score one, and an errant throw by rookie outfielder Abraham Almonte brought home another.

Ventura stifled the Mariners early in his second Major League start. The 22-year-old began the year in Double-A, but has risen quickly through the Royals organization thanks to the same 100-mph fastball that held the Mariners to just one hit through his first 5 2/3 innings.

But Royals manager Ned Yost had the rookie on an exceptionally short leash. With two outs in the sixth, Brad Miller drew a walk off Ventura, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. A single by Almonte scored the shortstop, and a walk of Seager brought Ventura's night to a close after throwing six strikeouts to just two hits.

With the single, Almonte has now reached base safely in all 17 of his career Major League games with a plate appearance, and has a hit in 15 of them.

Seattle tied the game in the seventh when Kansas City center fielder Jarrod Dyson misplayed a fly ball from Mike Zunino, allowing Smoak to score from first and sending Zunino to third base. A single by Nick Franklin plated Zunino to give the home team a 3-2 lead.

Franklin's slap gives him a seven-game hitting streak, a welcome surge for the rookie second baseman. The 22-year-old Floridian excelled for Seattle early in the season and was one of the team's most productive hitters, batting .290 with a .823 OPS through his first 35 games. But a midseason slump dropped his average all the way down to .214 in mid-September.

The Royals retook the lead on what should have been a routine double play to end the eighth inning, but second baseman Franklin's throw ricocheted over first baseman Smoak's head, allowingAlex Gordon to score from third. Kansas City would add another run off reliever Charlie Furbush on Perez's single before the frame was over.

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