ANAHEIM – It may not have been the nail-biter that happened in Tampa between the Rays and Orioles, but this game was filled with unique extra inning drama itself. The ending result? A walkoff 3-2 victory for the Los Angeles Angels over the Seattle Mariners, off the bat of Chris Iannetta.
To start it all off, I’ll start in the seventh. Now, just try and stay with me on this one because it may get confusing…
TOP SEVEN – Nick Franklin doubles with one out and is followed by a walk from Mike Zunino. Dustin Ackley then hit a soft liner to first just far enough to make it a struggle for Mark Trumbo. Michael Kohn, the current pitcher for the Angels, made a big blunder by not running to the bag immediately, allowing Ackley to just barely reach on an infield single to load the bases instead of having the inning end. Of course, Michael Saunders was able to hit a two-run single to give the Mariners a 2-0 lead.
BOTTOM SEVEN – Mark Trumbo reaches on a throw from Kyle Seager that landed in the stands to leadoff the inning. He’s following by a battling nine pitch walk from Kole Calhoun. Erasmo Ramirez comes out of the game with an injury, Oliver Perez replaces him. Erick Aybar advances the runners on a sacrific bunt. Mike Scoscia brings in a pinch hitter, Colin Cowgill. Eric Wedge decides he doesn’t like the matchup, and brings in Chance Ruffin. Scoscia rebuddles with a change of his own, giving Efren Navarro a chance to pinch hit… he strikes out. Andrew Romine comes to the plate 2-for-2 with a pair of singles already. Romine draws a full count, and then delivers with a single to right, both runs score, tie game.
I did my best to make it brief so hopefully, you kept up and understood.
I’ll pick back up in the eleventh inning. Kole Calhoun singles to right center with one out to put a runner on the base paths. A lineout that almost fell from Erick Aybar kept Calhoun at first. In steps Chris Iannetta. The fans are nervous due to the 11:15pm curfew for fireworks, so Iannetta has to do something dramatic and quick. The clock hits 11:15, Iannetta delivers with a far hit ball to the wall in left center, Calhoun rounds third and trots across home at 11:15!
Ok, so that was the offensive side of the night. The drama of a walkoff is always fun, but you have to note good pitching when it happens.
Matt Shoemaker made his Major League debut tonight, and hopefully his parents were watching because it was a good one. Shoemaker tossed five scoreless innings, allowing just four base runners (two hits, two walks), and struck out five, all with an amazing splitter. Prior to the game Scoscia said of Shoemaker, “He isn’t a guy thats gonna ‘wow’ you with his stuff. He’s not gonna hit 95, he’s got a terrific fastball that breaks late and a terrific splitter. He changes speed well and he’s gonna throw strikes.” Well Sosh was right, that splitter was “terrific” as it got five guys swinging.
In the grey and teal road jersey of the Mariners on the mound was Erasmo Ramirez. Ramirez pitched just as “filthy” as Shoemaker but used his slider instead of splitter to be effective. Ramirez’s slider is so effective due to separate arm slots in which he throws it. Regardless, Ramirez pitched a gem, going allowing six plus innings, after being escorted off the field by a team trainer. Ramirez allowed six hits, that lead to two unearned runs, walked one (last batter faced) and struck out three in a no decision as well.
Both the Mariners and Angels bullpen were stellar. They went a combined 10.1 innings pitched, allowing just seven hits (Angels 5, Mariners 2), both clubs walking three each, and striking out ten (Angels 7, Mariners 3).
Nick Franklin made his first start at shortstop and he looked stellar. Smooth play with ease, as well as a quick release from both out of the glove and out of his hand. Franklin had himself a day at the plate as well, going 3-for-5 with a double.
Final from Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California:
Mariners, 2 Angels, 3
W – Cory Rasmus (1-1, 5.12)
L – Bobby LaFrombaise (0-1, 7.88)
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