If the first weekend of the season is any indication, the Mariners will be putting pressure on opponents all season long.
At least that's the plan.
Seattle stole a half-dozen bases in eight attempts. It put on the hit-and-run. It dropped down a couple of sacrifice bunts. It swung away after bluffing bunts. It even scored from third on a sacrifice fly that barely carried 20 feet into center field.
So while the Mariners only had two homers in a three-game set to open the season in Oakland, Mariners hitters twice were able to score late and pull out wins in games the club might have lost a year ago.
"I like the aggressive pace we're setting," manager Eric Wedge said. "When we can, we want to give ourselves every opportunity to score."
The pitchers appreciate that. Righty Felix Hernandez and lefty Jason Vargas both gave Seattle strong starts the first time out, and the Mariners won those games (Vargas got a no-decision) because of late offense fueled by aggressive tactics.
"There's a difference in this team and the way it wants to go about winning," Vargas said. "There's an intensity throughout the entire team."
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