Mariners left fielder Dustin Ackley notched his second career
multi-homer game as the Mariners belted four home runs in their 10-5
victory over the Houston Astros on Friday night at Minute Maid Park.
Ackley cracked solo home runs in the third and eighth innings,
walked and scored three times as Seattle (83-70) kept pace in the
American League wild-card chase. The Mariners also smacked two
three-run homers en route to their third double-digit scoring output
"Yeah, that seems to work pretty good," Mariners manager Lloyd
McClendon said of the power surge and the three-run homers in
particular. "I'll take a few more of those. A good night
Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano finished 3-for-5 and produced
his 900th career RBI. Seattle right-hander Taijuan Walker (2-2) was
victorious in his return to the starting rotation, allowing two
runs, eight hits and two walks with seven strikeouts over 5 2/3
The Astros (67-87) dropped their fourth consecutive home game on the
heels of a five-game home winning streak. Second baseman Jose Altuve
finished 3-for-3 and upped his season hits total to 216, the most by
a primary second baseman since Rod Carew recorded 218 in 1974.
Altuve also matched the single-season hits record for a
Venezuelan-born player set by Magglio Ordonez with the Detroit
Tigers in 2007.
"He was one of the best hitters when he played in Venezuela," Altuve
said of Ordonez. "I'm happy to tie him for hits in a season."
Astros right-hander Brad Peacock (4-9) showed flashes of wildness
and it was his lack of control, combined with a mistake-prone
defense, that cost him an opportunity to work deep into his 27th
start of 2014.
Peacock walked two batters in the second inning yet managed to
escape unscathed. However, when Peacock walked center fielder Austin
Jackson and Ackley in succession in the fourth, Seattle didn't waste
After Cano chased Peacock with a run-scoring single, third baseman
Kyle Seager greeted Astros right-hander Jake Buchanan with a
three-run homer to right field, his 24th home run of the season.
That was the Mariners' second three-run blast in the frame, with
catcher Mike Zunino smacking his 21st home run after first baseman
Logan Morrison and right fielder Michael Saunders reached on
consecutive errors by shortstop Jonathan Villar and first baseman
Chris Carter, and after McClendon took off the bunt play.
"I got into a 2-1 count, he took it off and let me swing," Zunino
said. "But it's something I'm pretty comfortable doing."
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The Mariners sent 12 batters to the plate in the fourth while
scoring seven runs (six unearned). Peacock was charged with all
seven runs, six hits and four walks (with two strikeouts) over 3 1/3
"I still got to make pitches and do my job out there," Peacock said
of the defensive miscues. "It was a tough one."
Granted an 8-1 lead, Walker was able to focus on attacking hitters.
He surrendered three hits to Altuve and two run-scoring singles to
center fielder Dexter Fowler, but that amount of difficulty proved
He navigated a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the third and worked
briskly after the Mariners spotted him a sizable lead an inning
"In my previous starts I wasn't pounding the strike zone so I wanted
to make sure I went out there and pounded the strike zone,
especially with my fastball," said Walker, who made his first start
since July 23. "That's definitely what I did and just kind of made
them put the ball in play."
NOTES: Mariners LHP Roenis Elias underwent an MRI on his left elbow,
the results of which won't be known until Monday. Elias is
reportedly lost for the remainder of the season with elbow
stiffness. He made his last appearance on Sept. 16 in a 13-2 win
over the Los Angeles Angels. ... Astros 2B Jose Altuve made his
first start of the season as designated hitter, a move designed to
give DH Chris Carter some play in the field in advance of the
season-ending interleague road series against the New York Mets.
Carter started at first base in the place of scuffling rookie Jon
Singleton, who is mired in an 0-for-20 slump and has 22 strikeouts
against just four hits this month. ... The Mariners arrived in
Houston around 6 a.m. Friday after winning in Anaheim against the
Los Angeles Angels late Thursday night.
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