No one expected Hisashi Iwakuma to repeat his 13-strikeout performance when he took the mound in New York today. Still, it wouldn’t have hurt.
In this weekend’s rubber match, the Mariners took their second loss in ten games on five hits and two runs. Excepting Trayvon Robinson and Eric Thames, each player managed to reach base, while the bulk of the offense was fueled by a pair of RBI singles from Jesus Montero. While the team saw over 44% of outs on ground balls and over 14% of outs on the first pitch, they also recorded just 3 strikeouts, their lowest strikeout total since a 5-0 shutout by Boston on June 29, 2012.
Iwakuma, looking more like the spot starter we saw last month and less like the powerhouse that showed up against the Blue Jays, lasted just 5 innings, allowing 7 hits, 4 runs, 2 walks, and a moonshot to center field by Raul Ibanez. Josh Kinney broke a scoreless streak of 3 appearances, padding the Yankees’ lead by 2 runs, while Oliver Perez, Shawn Kelley, and Lucas Luetge polished off the last 3 innings with 3 hits and a walk.
Tomorrow, the Mariners head to Baltimore for their second series of this 9-game road trip. Both Brendan Ryan and Mike Carp, who sat out with elbow soreness and paternity leave, respectively, are scheduled to return in the next day or so.
Next game: @ Orioles | August 6 | 4:05pm