Thursday, April 04, 2013

Mariners Will Face Royals in World Series

Mariner ace Felix Hernandez came through with a clutch performance in game 7 as Seattle beat Arizona 5-2 to advance to the World Series.  A recap of the series:

Game 1: Felix Hernandez vs Brad Bergesen
Diamondback grabbed a couple of runs early against Felix Hernandez while Bergesen shut down the Mariners. Steven Jackson came in relief in the seventh inning and continued to put down Mariner hitters until running into some trouble in the 9th. Jose Valverde came in to save the game but allowed a 2 run homerun by Alex Rodriguez with 2 outs in the ninth inning to tie it. Valverde beaned Brandon Phillips in the 10th. Phillips then stole second and third and was singled in by Brendan Ryan to take the lead. Francisco Rodriguez struck out the side to earn the save as the Mariners steal a 3-2 victory in 10 innings.

Game 2: Justin Verlander vs Randy Wells
Randy Wells had a strong pitching performance while Adam Jones had a good day at the plate. The D-back put up four runs in the 3rd to take a 4-1 lead. Seattle closed the gap by one in the top of the 5th but Jones blasted a 2 run homer in the bottom half to provide some breathing room. Yunel Escobar and Martin Prado also went yard to help the Diamondbacks win game 2 easily 8-3.

Game 3: Jon Lester vs Jered Weaver
Shane Victorino hit Lester’s first pitch over the fence for a quick lead and Rafael Furcal hit another solo homerun in the 2nd to make it 2-0 but Seattle quickly tied it two in the bottom half with a Travis Hafner homerun. Alex Rodriguez hit a 2 run blast in the 5th for a 2 run lead but the Diamondbacks got two of their own in the 7th after Rafael Furcal led off the inning with a triple. Brandon Phillips answered in the 8th with 2 run shot and mid-season acquisition Trevor Hoffman proved valuable by keeping Arizona scoreless the last 2 2/3 innings for a 6-4 Mariner victory.

Game 4: Felix Hernandez vs Barry Zito
The winds were blowing out at Safeco as both starters got chased early. Zito allowed 8 runs in less than 5 innings while Hernandez left a little less damage for his team by allowing 6 runs in less than five. The Mariners put up 10 runs in the first 6 innings helped by a 5 run fifth inning which included a 3 run Alex Rodriguez homerun. Brandon Phillips and Rodriguez each contributed 3 RBI. Randy Johnson pitched 4 2/3 in relief allowing only 1 run to earn the victory in his farewell tour. Mariners coast 10-6.

Game 5: Justin Verlander vs Dallas Braden
Seattle asks a struggling Verlander to close out the series at home against Braden. Verlander struggles continue early as the Diamondbacks put up six in the first 3 innings led by Dustin Pedroia and Yunel Escobar, and Oscar Salazar each adding 2 RBI. Braden didn’t allow a run in 6 innings and gave way to Doug Mathis who allowed four runs in the last 3 innings to earn the save.

Game 6: Roy Oswalt vs Brad Bergesen
Oswalt closed out round 1 in the sixth game for Seattle and was asked to do the same while Bergesen tried to continue his magic from game 1. As usual, Arizona struck first with 2 runs in the second with a Adam Jones 2 run homer. Seattle answered back with 2 in the fifth to tie hit but Pedroia had a RBI single the same inning to give Arizona the lead back at 3-2. His next at bat in the seventh, Pedroia blasted a 2 run homer for a 6-2 lead. Doug Mathis picked his second save as the Diamondbacks don’t allow an earned run in their 6-4 victory to force a game 7.

Game 7: Felix Hernandez vs Randy Wells
Wells pitched well in game 2 while Hernandez was rocked his last start in game 4. Hernandez came ready this time. King Felix pitched 7 scoreless innings with 7 strikeouts. Albert Pujols and Carlos Quentin each had quiet series but finally contributed when it mattered by hitting homeruns. Faced with a 5-0 deficit in the 9th inning, the Diamondbacks started a rally against David Aardsma and Francisco Rodriguez before leaving the tying run at the plate as Seattle wins 5-2 and moves on to the championship.

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