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Texas at Seattle

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Texas (71-75)000042010782
Seattle (57-87) «12102110x8150

Mariners use small ball to overcome HR-happy Rangers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SEATTLE -- Ichiro Suzuki is hoping to reach at least one of his goals during the Seattle Mariners' lost season.

Suzuki and Raul Ibanez had four hits apiece to help Seattle beat the Texas Rangers 8-7 on Wednesday, handing the AL West title to the Los Angeles Angels.

Ibanez also had three RBI and Suzuki moved within 10 of an eighth straight season with at least 200 hits. That would tie Wee Willie Keeler for the most 200-hit seasons to start a career.

"It's always been a clear goal for me," Suzuki said. "So there is not a reason that I wouldn't be motivated."

The second-place Rangers' loss coupled with the Angels' 4-2 win over the New York Yankees clinched the division for Los Angeles, which became the first team in the majors to wrap up a spot in the postseason.

"To be able to clinch with two weeks left in the season shows you they have been playing great baseball all year long," Texas shortstop Michael Young said. "They deserve it for sure."

The Mariners felt some relief with Los Angeles wrapping it up. They play their next four games in Anaheim so they avoid having the Angels celebrate in front of them as they did last season.

"You want to be the team celebrating but not the team they're celebrating on," Ibanez said. "They play an aggressive style of baseball. It's fun to watch on TV but not fun to play against. I have a lot of respect for that club and what they've done."

Roy Corcoran (5-0), the fifth of seven relievers used by the Mariners, worked 1 2/3 scoreless innings to get the win and J.J. Putz earned his 13th save in 21 opportunities.

Nelson Cruz, Taylor Teagarden and Hank Blalock each hit a two-run homer for Texas, which couldn't overcome a rough outing from Kevin Millwood (9-9). Chris Davis added a solo drive in the eighth.

Ibanez hit a tiebreaking RBI single off Kameron Loe in the sixth to make it 7-6 and added another run-scoring single with two outs in the seventh.

It was another nice day in a terrific second half for Ibanez, who is batting .310 with 23 homers and 105 RBI on the year.

"I'm just glad I don't have to face him," Putz said. "Raul has been as hot as anybody in the game right now. It's really nothing new. He's been as consistent as anybody the past three or four years. It's been a pleasure to call him a teammate and watch what he has been doing."

Suzuki got the Mariners off to a fast start. He led off the first with an infield single, stole second on the next pitch and raced to third when catcher Teagarden's throw went into center field.

Yuniesky Betancourt then hit a grounder to shortstop, giving the Mariners a 1-0 lead.

Kenji Johjima hit a two-run single in the second, and Ibanez doubled in Betancourt in the third.

Cesar Jimenez worked three scoreless innings in his first major league start for Seattle, which used a committee approach with its starting pitchers ailing. Cruz and Teagarden connected against Jared Wells in the fifth to tie it at 4.

The Mariners' first three hitters, Suzuki, Betancourt and Ibanez, went 10-for-14, scored five runs and drove in four.

Millwood allowed seven runs, five earned, and 11 hits in five-plus innings.

"I just wasn't good," he said. "I thought I made some good pitches; I just didn't make enough of them."

Notes

  • Mariners 3B Adrian Beltre flew to Los Angeles to see a hand specialist about his injured left thumb. "He was really sore (Tuesday) so I know we'll shut him down a couple days, probably," manager Jim Riggleman said. "He'll talk with the doctor and decide what needs to be done at this time or later." There is concern that Beltre will need surgery, which would end his season.
  • Texas' Milton Bradley, who came out of Tuesday's game with back pain, sat out Wednesday. Texas manager Ron Washington said it is not a serious issue and expects him to be ready for the four-game Oakland series beginning Thursday.
  • Ranger C/DH Gerald Laird batted leadoff Wednesday for the first time in his career. He was 0-2 with a pair of walks.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Hank Blalock hits one of the four Rangers home runs, but it's not enough to put Texas over the top.  (AP)
Hank Blalock hits one of the four Rangers home runs, but it's not enough to put Texas over the top. (AP)

Players of the Game
Seattle

R. Ibanez
AB 5
R 1
H 4
HR 0
RBI 3
Seattle

I. Suzuki
AB 5
R 3
H 4
HR 0
RBI 0
 
Texas Rangers
Gerald Laird, DH4010110 .289
German Duran, 2B3000000 .227
   a- Ramon Vazquez, PH1000000 .298
Michael Young, SS5000032 .281
Josh Hamilton, CF1100300 .303
Marlon Byrd, LF4010003 .294
Hank Blalock, 1B3212112 .260
Nelson Cruz, RF3112110 .327
Chris Davis, 3B4221012 .273
Taylor Teagarden, C4122010 .375
Totals3278768  
a-grounded out for Duran in the 9th
Batting
2B - Taylor Teagarden (2, Corcoran)
HR - Hank Blalock (5, Woods), Nelson Cruz (4, J. Wells), Chris Davis (15, Batista), Taylor Teagarden (4, J. Wells)
SH - German Duran (5)
RBI - Hank Blalock 2 (20), Nelson Cruz 2 (11), Chris Davis (43), Taylor Teagarden 2 (11)
2-OUT RBI - Chris Davis (20)
CS - Gerald Laird (4, 2nd base by Messenger/Johjima), Josh Hamilton (1, 3rd base by Jimenez/Johjima)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Davis
E - Hank Blalock (5, Misplayed grounder), Taylor Teagarden (2, Throwing)
Texas Rangers
Kevin Millwood (L,9-9) 51175220 5.15
Kameron Loe 2411130 3.51
Josh Rupe 1000010 4.56
IBB - Balentien by Kameron Loe
HBP - Tuiasosopo (by Kevin Millwood)
Pitches-Strikes - Kevin Millwood 103-68, Kameron Loe 41-27, Josh Rupe 17-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kevin Millwood 5-8, Kameron Loe 2-1, Josh Rupe 1-1
Batters Faced - Kevin Millwood 29, Kameron Loe 11, Josh Rupe 3
Seattle Mariners
Ichiro Suzuki, RF5340002 .313
Yuniesky Betancourt, SS4121112 .273
Raul Ibanez, LF5143000 .310
Jose Lopez, 2B5000026 .291
Jeremy Reed, DH5210002 .271
Wladimir Balentien, CF3110201 .203
Matt Tuiasosopo, 3B4021013 .250
Kenji Johjima, C4012003 .208
Miguel Cairo, 1B4000025 .245
Totals39815736  
Batting
2B - Raul Ibanez 2 (42, Millwood, Millwood), Jeremy Reed (16, Millwood)
RBI - Yuniesky Betancourt (42), Raul Ibanez 3 (105), Matt Tuiasosopo (1), Kenji Johjima 2 (29)
2-OUT RBI - Raul Ibanez (33)
SB - Ichiro Suzuki (41, 3rd base off Millwood/Teagarden)
Team LOB - 11
Seattle Mariners
Cesar Jimenez 3100240 3.29
Jared Wells 1344102 9.45
Randy Messenger 1.1111100 4.26
Jake Woods (BS,1)0111001 6.00
Roy Corcoran (W,5-0) 1.2100210 3.34
Miguel Batista (H,4) 1111021 6.06
J.J. Putz (S,13) 1000010 3.92
IBB - Hamilton by Roy Corcoran
Pitches-Strikes - Cesar Jimenez 48-25, Jared Wells 23-11, Randy Messenger 17-10, Jake Woods 1-1, Roy Corcoran 37-17, Miguel Batista 17-13, J.J. Putz 19-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Cesar Jimenez 1-3, Jared Wells 1-2, Randy Messenger 2-1, Roy Corcoran 3-1, Miguel Batista 1-0, J.J. Putz 2-0
Batters Faced - Cesar Jimenez 11, Jared Wells 7, Randy Messenger 5, Jake Woods 1, Roy Corcoran 8, Miguel Batista 4, J.J. Putz 3
Game Information
Attendance - 23644
Game Time - 3:11
Temperature - 62
Umpires - Home - Brian Knight, First Base - Randy Marsh, Second Base - Hunter Wendelstedt, Third Base - Marvin Hudson