Santana powers Mariners past Orioles 5-2
SEATTLE, Wash. — Domingo Santana hit his third home run in two days, Wade LeBlanc gave the Mariners a boost on the mound after another rough outing by an opener and Seattle beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-2 on Thursday night.
Santana’s homers helped the Mariners win back-to-back games for the first time since May 13-14 against Oakland.
The Orioles have lost nine straight, and have just three wins in June.
Santana tied it at 2 with a homer to right-center field off Orioles starter Dylan Bundy (3-9) in the sixth inning. Kyle Seager and Mac Williamson followed with RBI singles. The home run came a day after Santana hit two homers to fuel a sweep-averting Seattle victory over Kansas City.
LeBlanc (4-2) wiped out another difficult start by a Mariners opener with a steady outing over 6 1/3 innings in which he struck out seven. Seattle turned to reliever Tayler Scott to start with few other options in the bullpen. Scott walked three of the Orioles’ first five batters and was pulled after throwing 13 balls on 23 pitches.
LeBlanc entered the game an inning ahead of schedule and gave up a two-run single to Rio Ruiz before recording the third out of the inning. He sat down Orioles over the next six innings, however, to keep the Mariners in the game. He gave up a leadoff single to Pedro Severino in the third, but struck out three straight to end the threat. He walked Dwight Smith Jr. and intentionally walked Hanser Alberto in the sixth, but also got out of that inning with two strikeouts. His team backed him up with a double play in the seventh after Richie Martin‘s leadoff single.
The seven Mariners openers now have a combined ERA of 19.50. Scott and LeBlanc combined in this one to give up just two runs and four hits in seven innings. Austin Adams struck out the side in the eighth, and Roenis Eliasfinished off the game for his eighth save.
Smith returned to his regular spot in left field after recovering from a concussion. Smith ran into the wall chasing a fly ball on June 7 against the Texas Rangers. He entered the concussion protocol and said his head was fuzzy for a week to 10 days. Despite missing 13 days, he remains the Orioles’ RBI leader and vowed to continue running headlong toward the wall.
“I’m going to play my game, regardless,” Smith said. “I’m not going to think about getting hurt again. That’s when you do get hurt.”
In other moves, the Orioles designated RHP Dan Straily for assignment and recalled RHP Evan Phillips from Triple-A Norfolk. Manager Brandon Hyde said he hopes Straily clears waivers and returns to the organization, and believes the pitcher just needs “a fresh start.”
Orioles: Rookie pitcher John Means was put on the 10-day injured list and will miss his scheduled start Friday in Seattle to rest a sore left shoulder. Means (6-4, 2.67 ERA) has been the Orioles’ best pitcher this season. The left-hander hopes it’s a temporary setback and said he had a similar situation while pitching in college: “It was one of those things where I missed a start and was fine for the rest of the season.” … Outfielder Trey Mancini hopes to return to the lineup Friday against the Mariners, but acknowledged he may be out longer with a bruised elbow. Mancini was hit by a pitch in the first inning of Wednesday’s loss to the Oakland Athletics. “It looked like a golf ball was in my elbow,” Mancini said.
Mariners: Manager Scott Servais acknowledged right fielder Mitch Haniger might be out until after the All-Star break as he recovers from surgery on a ruptured testicle. Haniger is increasing activity, but has yet to run. Servais said he would also need a minor league rehab assignment before returning.
Orioles: Hyde was unsure who would start against the Mariners on Friday, calling it a bullpen day.
Mariners: RHP Mike Leake (6-6, 4.14 ERA) will look to continue his three-game win streak in the second game of the Baltimore series.
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