Fans at Safeco Field on Friday were treated to a first-class pitching duel, as Trevor Bauer and Taijuan Walker both nearly went the distance in the Mariners’ 2-1 victory over the Cleveland Indians. The two starters were stellar, with Bauer pitching 7.0 innings, allowing six hits and three walks while striking out 10. As impressive as Bauer was, Walker was better. The young Mariners star, who has had a disappointing season thus far, lived up to his billing on Friday, pitching 8.0 innings, allowing just two hits, no walks, and no runs.
Both Mariners’ runs were plated by Seth Smith in the sixth inning when, with one on and one out, he deposited a Bauer pitch into the stands. Those would the Seattle’s only runs of the night, but it was all they needed. The Indians managed to squeak out one run in the ninth off Seattle closer Fernando Rodney when Ryan Raburn, pinch hitting for Jose Ramirez, notched his first triple of the year. Jason Kipnis scored, but Raburn was stranded as the rally fell just short.
- Jason Kipnis remained red-hot, going 1-3 in the game with a run and a walk. His average climbed to .345 on the season.
- Despite Bauer being upset with his mistake to Smith, he really did pitch a solid game, and it is getting harder to argue him being a consistent and reliable starter for the Indians.
- Nick Swisher was the only other Indian to collect a hit off Walker.
- Despite not seeing regular playing time, Ryan Raburn is starting to piece together a good campaign, now batting .315 on the season with two homeruns and 14 RBIs.
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- The Indians dropped another low scoring affair. The Indians are now 2-6 in one-run games on the season.
- Despite the anemic offense, which really can be attributed to Walker’s electric stuff, the only other “bad” of the evening was Seth Smith’s homerun. On that homerun, Bauer, when asked after the game, said, “It was a cutter. It was a stupid pitch. I shouldn’t have thrown it. It was the wrong pitch at the wrong time.”
- Shaun Marcum, who got beat up in his last outing leading to debate over his occupation of the fifth rotation spot, hopes to replicate a game much more similar to his first two Tribe appearances as he takes the mound on Saturday at 10:10 ET. Seattle will counter with Roenis Elias.
- Carlos Santana will still not be with the club, away on paternity leave.
- After finishing the month of May in Seattle, the club will be off on Monday, June 1 as they travel to Kansas City to take on the division leading Royals. Wins in Seattle Saturday and Sunday will provide even more meaning to this pivotal AL central matchup.