The Mariners, as we all know, aren’t even contention-adjacent, and with the Cardinals’ recent slide and the calibur of their division rivals, it’s looking less likely that they’ll have a shot at the playoffs either. The Mariners began the season on the highest of highs but, until the past couple weeks of actually passable baseball, have been absolutely dreadful. The Cardinals have been better but less interesting, going into today’s game with an exact .500 record and a run differential of +1. At least for Mariners fans, anyone watching today’s game was watching not because the outcome would be important, but because they enjoy watching the game of baseball.
The Mariners lost 5-4, but I don’t really think that matters. The game went back and forth several times, and I was hoping Seattle would pull ahead in the end just so I could consider the foul pole that barely kept Tommy Edman’s foul ball from being a grand slam the real the difference-maker in the game. That wasn’t what happened, though, and the two-run single he hit instead produced what would be the final score.
There were poor performances. Tommy Milone had his worst outing of the year, going 5.1 innings, giving up 7 hits and being responsible for all five runs. Matt Festa inherited two base runners in relief, walked the next, gave up the two-run single that was barely not a grand slam and exited the game, not recording an out. Omar Narvaez went 0-4 as the DH.
There were performances to celebrate, though. Carasiti pitched a strong inning as the opener, giving up a single but striking out two. J.P. Crawford put up the first run with a solo home run in the 1st inning.
Crawford would earn another RBI in the 3rd inning on a groundout that scored Dee Gordon. Vogelbach followed later that inning with a single that scored Mallex Smith, and would later earn a walk.
Smith, along with Domingo Santana, had a two-hit game. Tim Beckham hit a solo home run in the 4th inning, and would walk later in the game.
Danny Altavilla, who has struggled with his command, did not struggle tonight and ended things by throwing a 1-2-3 9th, striking out the final batter he faced.
As it’s the 4th of July, many of us were lucky and had the day off to watch the game, eat barbecue and prepare to blow our fingers off for our country. For those who did have to work, I hope you were able to leave the office a little early and enjoy at least some of the afternoon, like Cardinals manager Mike Shildt.