This is a game the Mariners and their fans know all too well. Travel down to Los Angeles, play an eminently winnable game, give up a dinger or two to Mike Trout, lose maddeningly, regret it deeply later on.
Oenophile Robbie Ray had a start roughly equivalent to a Woodbridge cabernet - not quite catastrophic, but certainly not pleasant: Five innings pitched, eight hits, five earned runs. Unfortunately for Ray, if we continue this wine metaphor, the Mariners’ defense was the stubborn old cork that disintegrates as you try to pull it out (and Jesse Winker, specifically was the small, floating bits of cork that appear in your glass when you say ‘screw it’ and shove the cork down into the bottle and attempt to pour around it).
Robbie Ray nearly got his second out in the 1st inning, but a ball that appeared to get lost in the lights winds up landing in shallow left field between Jesse Winker and Eugenio Suárez, which turns into a double for Shohei Ohtani ... Then, Taylor Ward ripped a two-run double. pic.twitter.com/bsM2ZQvF5I— Daniel Kramer (@DKramer_) September 17, 2022
Meanwhile, Julio Rodríguez continued to be perfectly chilled, effervescent champagne.
For much of this season, the Mariners’ pitching staff have kept it close - some closer than others - and the offense has powered them up above the water line. A few times this game it looked like they might catapult themselves up into a similar victory, but a tough Matt Festa outing and Luis Rengifo made it impossible for Seattle to surpass the Angels tonight (despite the best efforts of Carlos Santana (two homers), Ty France (home run) and Sam Haggerty (pinch hit RBI single - start this man more!)).
Unfortunately, to make matters worse, Eugenio Suárez injured his hand fielding a ball in the fourth and later left the game in extreme pain. Scott Servais called the situation either “concerning” or “very concerning,” depending on which beat reporter you prefer. X-rays tonight were inconclusive, but more will be taken tomorrow.
Mariners lose to the Angels by one. Classic. But context certainly soothes some wounds...
The Angels have been eliminated from the postseason.
The Mariners have [now] been eliminated from a 100-win season.