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Los Angeles at Seattle

Scoreboard
L.A. Angels (89-72)000000001193
Seattle (74-87) «10020201x692

Mariners 6, Angels 1

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SEATTLE -- Kyle Seager made a point during his offseason workout program to get stronger. He didn't expect the work to translate into a 20-homer year in his first full major league season.

Seager became the first Seattle batter to hit 20 home runs in a season since 2009 with a solo shot in the first inning and the Mariners beat Mike Trout and the Los Angeles Angels 6-1 on Tuesday night.

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"It's a nice personal accomplishment. It was a good offseason for me. I worked out really hard, trying to get myself to where you can hit the ball a little harder and the coaches have helped me out a lot here," Seager said. "... I don't really consider myself a home run hitter."

Seager provided Seattle some early offense, becoming just the fifth player in Mariners history to record a 20-homer season in one of his first two years in the majors. He added a double in the sixth, when the Mariners took a 5-0 lead.

With the Angels out of the playoff chase, much of the attention turned to the Mariners announcement Tuesday that the fences would be moved in at Safeco Field for the 2013 season, most notably in left-center field where fly balls notoriously die. Almost on cue, both teams peppered the outfield with fly balls that left question about whether that would be a home run in future seasons.

There was no question about Michael Saunders' two-run double in the fourth inning off Angels' starter Dan Haren (12-13) that thudded off the wall on the fly in deep left-center to score John Jaso and Justin Smoak. Seattle's Casper Wells, twice, and the Angels' Hank Conger both hit fly balls that very likely could be homers in future seasons but ended up being flyouts.

"If I was a little stronger it would have gotten out," Wells said. "Next year it would be a couple of home runs so that would be cool."

The Mariners are moving in the fences only a few feet in some spots, but are making a drastic change in left-center field where it will be shortened by as much as 17 feet in one spot.

Seager reached a power milestone no Seattle batter could in each of the last two seasons with his homer in the first. Russell Branyan (31) and Jose Lopez (25) in 2009 were the last Seattle hitters to reach the 20-homer mark. With the closer fences, next year should be less celebrated reaching the mark.

"I think it would affect us in a negative way if we really started thinking about it if everyone started trying to hit balls in the air and that kind of deal," Seager said. "If everyone continues with what we've been doing of late, we'll be good."

Hisashi Iwakuma (9-5) made his bid for a spot in Seattle's 2013 plans by winning his third straight start to close the year. He allowed six hits and struck out seven, including Angels' slugger Albert Pujols three times, while pitching six scoreless innings. It was just the 12th time in Pujols career that he struck out three times in a game.

The only two pitchers to strike out Pujols three times in a single game are Iwakuma and Seattle ace Felix Hernandez, who did in less than a week ago in Anaheim.

The Angels left runners at second and third in the first inning, then saw Trout standing at third with no outs in the third and failed to get him home. Iwakuma struck out Howie Kendrick, Pujols and got a ground out from Kendrys Morales to escape the jam.

Iwakuma, who will be a free agent after the season, finished 8-4 with a 2.65 ERA after moving into the starting rotation in July.

"He's made that transition back to starting about as good as you can. When you see runners get on base, the way he executes pitches, he's able to slow the game down and work to the situation," Seattle manager Eric Wedge said.

The penultimate game of the season came a night after the Angels were eliminated from the AL wild card chase. And they played like a team with nothing tangible left to play for, tying their season high with three errors, including a pair in the sixth inning by right fielder Mark Trumbo that helped two runs score.

Mike Trout had one hit in five at-bats to see his average drop to .324. He's seven points behind leader Miguel Cabrera.

Haren tied his career high in losses, but got little help from his defense. He struck out eight, but also gave up seven hits and dropped his final two decisions of the season.

"We just couldn't get that hit early that would've helped Dan relax and make some pitches," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "On the defensive side we cracked the door open for them too often."

Notes

Kendrick had an RBI single in the ninth to score Andrew Romine and avoid the shutout. ... The last time Pujols had two, three-strikeout games in a season was 2008. ... Seattle CF Franklin Gutierrez did not play Tuesday and won't in the season finale Wednesday bothered by a sore groin.

 
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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Players of the Game
Seattle

M. Saunders
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
Los Angeles

H. Kendrick
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Los Angeles Angels
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Mike Trout, LF5010033 .324
Howard Kendrick, 2B5031022 .289
Albert Pujols, DH5000036 .286
Kendrys Morales, 1B4010011 .270
Alberto Callaspo, 3B4000012 .253
Mark Trumbo, RF4020010 .269
    Kole Calhoun, RF0000000 .190
Hank Conger, C4000002 .176
Peter Bourjos, CF3000112 .222
Andrew Romine, SS3120101 .400
Totals37191212  
Batting
2B - Mark Trumbo (19, Capps)
RBI - Howard Kendrick (67)
2-OUT RBI - Howard Kendrick (32)
SB - Mike Trout (49, 2nd base off Iwakuma/Jaso), Peter Bourjos (3, 2nd base off Iwakuma/Jaso), Andrew Romine (1, 2nd base off Capps/Jaso)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Kendrick-Romine-Morales
E - Howard Kendrick (15, Misplayed grounder), Mark Trumbo 2 (7, Misplayed grounder)
Los Angeles Angels
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Dan Haren (L,12-13) 6753081 4.33
Jordan Walden 1000010 3.55
Andrew Taylor 1211100 5.40
HBP - Kawasaki (by Dan Haren)
Pitches-Strikes - Dan Haren 98-64, Jordan Walden 14-9, Andrew Taylor 19-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dan Haren 6-4, Jordan Walden 1-1, Andrew Taylor 1-2
Batters Faced - Dan Haren 26, Jordan Walden 3, Andrew Taylor 6
Seattle Mariners
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Dustin Ackley, 2B4000011 .227
Casper Wells, RF4000011 .223
Kyle Seager, 3B4221000 .258
John Jaso, C3210110 .276
Justin Smoak, 1B4120011 .217
Jesus Montero, DH4121012 .258
Michael Saunders, CF4023002 .249
Trayvon Robinson, LF4000024 .213
Munenori Kawasaki, SS2000020 .192
Totals3369519  
Batting
2B - Kyle Seager (34, Haren), Justin Smoak (14, Haren), Michael Saunders 2 (31, Haren, Haren)
HR - Kyle Seager (20, Haren)
RBI - Kyle Seager (85), Jesus Montero (59), Michael Saunders 3 (57)
2-OUT RBI - Kyle Seager (44), Michael Saunders 3 (16)
SB - Munenori Kawasaki (2, 2nd base off Haren/Conger)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
PB - John Jaso (5)
E - Michael Saunders (4, Misplayed grounder), Justin Smoak (4, Misplayed grounder)
Seattle Mariners
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Hisashi Iwakuma (W,9-5) 6600170 3.16
Carter Capps 2100130 3.96
Tom Wilhelmsen 1211020 2.50
WP - Hisashi Iwakuma (5)
Pitches-Strikes - Hisashi Iwakuma 105-72, Carter Capps 37-23, Tom Wilhelmsen 16-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Hisashi Iwakuma 8-4, Carter Capps 1-2
Batters Faced - Hisashi Iwakuma 26, Carter Capps 8, Tom Wilhelmsen 5
Game Information
Attendance - 14353
Game Time - 2:49
Temperature - 57
Umpires - Home - Todd Tichenor, First Base - Bob Davidson, Second Base - Brian Gorman, Third Base - Tony Randazzo