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Mariners fight Rangers, Rangers Walker all over them

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You know, the Mariners didn't win

I have first place in my eye.
I have first place in my eye.
Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

The Mariners didn't have The Greatest Comeback In Mariners History in them tonight. They didn't even have A Modestly Sized Comeback That Gets It Done Without Making Anyone Feel Too Bad Comebank in them. What they had was a starter without command, a couple of bad innings, and not enough runs. They also had a young man by the name of (checks attendance list) Steve Clevenger, who managed to go for 2-for-2 with a walk before hitting into a double play to end the night. Sometimes even devil magic runs out.

Top 1st

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count.

Nori Aoki: 2 pitches, line out

Seth Smith: 2 pitches, line out

Robinson Cano: 6 pitches, strikes out

Cool.

Bottom 1st

The cool thing about Adrian Beltre hitting a home run is that it meant Ian Desmond's stolen base didn't matter. I mean, Ian Desmond's single mattered. And Nomar Mazara's walk mattered. And Beltre's homer mattered. But Steve Clevenger's bad transfer and dumb look didn't matter. I'm not sure anything matters.

Top 2nd

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count.

Nelson Cruz: 2 pitches, flies out

Kyle Seager: 5 pitches, single (Yay, Kyle.)

Adam Lind: 6 pitches, grounds into a force out (Ugh, Adam.)

Dae-Ho Lee: 3 pitches, grounds out

Bottom 2nd

Elvis Andrus singled to lead off the inning. Taijuan Walker looked... you know, he didn't look good. Andrus swiped second because Steve Clevenger doesn't remember that you can throw people out and couldn't do it if he did. Bobby Wilson flew out, and then Profar lined into a double play with Andrus drifting far enough off the bag to get doubled up by Cano at second. It was a very nice play, but it did not take three runs off the board.

Top 3rd

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count.

Steve Clevenger: 4 pitches, walk (Wait, what?)

Luis Sardinas: 2 pitches, single (Wait.)

Nori Aoki: 2 pitches, grounds into a force, runners on the corners (Well, sure.)

Seth Smith: 3 pitches, sacrifice fly, Steve Clevenger scores (Thanks, Dad!)

Robinson Cano: 6 pitches, including one at 98 mph, ground out (Blargh.)

Bottom 3rd

Taijuan's velocity wasn't what it usually is, and his secondary pitches weren't fooling anyone. After a month of bad starts, we're left to wonder what's going on. He was laboring. The command was spotty. He gave up a single to Desmond and walked Mazara. Beltre's two RBI double felt inevitable, and proved to be. Beltre would later get thrown out at home after a Ryan Rua single, and the bleeding would stop.

Top 4th

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count.

Nelson Cruz: 3 pitches, pop out

Kyle Seager: 3 pitches, strike out

Adam Lind: 4 pitches, strike out

Bottom 4th

Jurickson Profar hit a solo home run. Pro tip: when punning on Profar's name, don't go for the easy Pro-far combo on a home run. Simply note it's more like Jerk-son Profar, amirite (yes) and move on. Also, don't give up home runs to Jurickson Profar if you want to pun at all.

Top 5th

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count.

Dae-Ho Lee: 6 pitches, single

Steve Clevenger: 1 pitch, double (Wait, no seriously, wut?)

Luis Sardinas: 2 pitches, ground out, Dae-Ho Lee scores (Hey cool, some Ranger blood!)

Norichika Aoki: 7 pitches, strike out

Seth Smith: 4 pitches, line out

Bottom 5th

Taijuan Walker got in a jam. Taijuan Walker got himself out of a jam. Effectively, nothing happened. It was great.

Top 6th

Yu Darvish is on a pitch count and oh, hey, the Mariners are working on that!

Robinson Cano: 2 pitches, double (Woot!)

Nelson Cruz: 5 pitches, strike out (I mean, he got close a few times.)

Kyle Seager: 4 pitches, single, Robinson Cano scores (Woot woot!)

Adam Lind: 4 pitches, grounds into a force out

Yu Darvish's pitch count kicked in, but then "Dae-Ho Lee: 1 pitch, force out" happened, and the Mariners kicked themselves out, and that was that. Darvish's final line: 5.2 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO. It wasn't great, but it was enough, and it belies the ease with which he mixed in his off-speed offerings with a fastball that touched the high 90's.

The Rangers would add one more run off Cody Martin on a Nomar Mazara single, and the Mariners would only vaguely threaten and certainly not score. The Rangers bullpen, so leaky in the last few weeks, held together annoyingly well. The Rangers took a one game lead in the AL West. None of the highlights from this game are embeddable and hey, that's fine. We are left to be a little (lot) a bit anxious about the rotation and it's 8.72 ERA over the last eight starts, a little bit worn down from flying so damn far, and a little bit tired from staying up too late last night (some of those are the Mariners and some of those are just me).

The Mariners are back at it tomorrow, with surprisingly less stressful Nate Karns on the mound.

Let's more effectively mess with Texas.

Go M's.