Cal’s Walk-Off Wednesday Helps M’s Avoid Sweep Before Hitting the Road

After allowing ten runs in both the first two games of the series, a George Kirby masterclass paired with more late-game heroics by the Big Dumper helped Seattle salvage the finale and finish the homestand with a 7-3 record. Sweeping the A’s, winning the series against the Pirates and dropping two of three against the Yankees now has the M’s at two games over, and they are headed to the Lone Star State to face off against the Texas Rangers for three to start an eight-game road trip.

But before we get ahead to what’s on tap, the Bronx Bombers were in town the past couple of nights, and if you happened to miss the series, or maybe just a few innings, here is a look back on all three games starting with Monday night’s blowout loss.

Bryce Miller took the mound in hopes of continuing his historically hot start to his career and 2023.

Unluckily for Miller, the Yankees mash fastballs...and he likes to use the fastball quite often. After a scoreless first, it was old friend Jake Bauers who got to Bryce on an RBI double in the second. Seattle did respond in the bottom half thanks to an RBI fielder’s choice by Teoscar Hernandez.

With the big man due up second in the third inning, Gleyber Torres reached on a line drive. The Yankee-faithful was present in T-Mobile, and they got their money’s worth, and so did Aaron Judge on a Bryce Miller four-seam fastball. His 117-MPH two-run homer to left was the third-hardest hit home run in Seattle dating back to 2015. Following Judge, the Yanks weren’t done adding on.

New York Yankees v Seattle Mariners

All Rise in T-Mobile Park...Aaron Judge's two-run shot gave New York a sizeable lead on Monday. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)Photo: Getty Images

In the fourth, Bauers again got to Miller’s fastball, and extended New York’s lead to three on his solo shot. Julio Rodriguez decreased the deficit back to two on a solo home run of his own.

Miller could never settle in on Monday. In the fifth, Willie Calhoun and Isiah Kiner-Falefa both had two-run doubles, and then #99 went yard again in the sixth. Bryce surrendered his first blowout loss of the season, where he gave up eight earned runs on 11 hits in just 4+ innings. New York handled the M’s in the opener, a final score of 10-4.

Looking to rebound on Tuesday, it was the thin man, Logan Gilbert up against “Nasty” Nestor Cortes.

Cortes, an all-star last season, came in with 14 career strikeouts against Seattle in three starts. Gilbert on the other hand, came in with a 7.97 ERA in four starts against the Yanks dating back to July of 2021.

New York got to Logan early and often Tuesday. It took him 35+ pitches to get out of the first after surrendering three runs on a bases-loaded double and sacrifice fly. In the third, New York replicated three more runs on a three-run home run by rookie Anthony Volpe.

Gilbert, like Miller, was hit hard by most of the Yankees’ lineup. In just four innings (tied for shortest appearance in 2023 – vs. CLE in April), he gave up seven runs (five earned) on seven hits.

New York Yankees v Seattle Mariners

Logan Gilbert uses all of his 6'6 frame in the first inning on Tuesday night. (Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images)Photo: Getty Images

No this isn’t copy and paste, but Aaron Judge homered again later in the game. It was his third in two games, and by that point this one was again way out of reach for Seattle. Another ten runs for the Yankees, as they won by a score of 10-2.

George Kirby, after his shaky performance last week against Pittsburgh, was on the hill in hopes of helping the Mariners avoid being swept by the Yankees in Seattle for the first time since 2014.

Seattle’s offense was again dormant throughout the entirety of Wednesday’s finale. Luckily, so was New York thanks to George Kirby.

One can say George was back on his A-game last night: eight innings, no runs, no walks and seven strikeouts. On the other hand, Clarke Schmidt went five plus while matching Kirby with seven strikeouts, and no runs allowed.

A scoreless game lead to free baseball on the last night of May. Justin Topa came in for Paul Sewald to pitch the 10th, and things got dicey in a hurry. With the ghost runner on second, J.P. was grounded a potential 6-5 putout, but lost handle of the ball, and it was first and third with no outs. A pop out by IKF, and then a walk to Bauers loaded the bases with one down.

Topa dialed in and got Volpe to groundout 5-2 as Eugenio Suarez fired home to Cal to conserve the 0-0 tie, and then got pinch hitter Franchy Cordero to strikeout to end NYY’s tenth inning threat.

Pinch-runner Jose Caballero took second as Cal was ready to go in the home tenth. Clutch Cal came through again in a big, late-game scenario as he lined a base hit to right, that scored Jose with ease.

Seattle was able to salvage a 1-0 victory as Big Dumper was doused with Gatorade and bubble gum.

New York Yankees v Seattle Mariners

A Gatorade-drenched Cal Raleigh shows his emotion to the Seattle fans behind the first base dugout after his game-winning hit Wednesday. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)Photo: Getty Images

The M’s are now off to Arlington to face off against the Texas Rangers. Texas, who are 15 games above .500, and lead the Majors with a .272 team batting average while ranking sixth in team ERA at 3.68.

Here are the pithing probables, starting Friday inside of Globe Life Field:

  • Friday 6/2 @ 5:05 PM: RHP Luis Castillo (4-2, 2.69 ERA) vs. RHP Jon Gray (5-1, 2.81 ERA)
  • Saturday 6/3 @ 1:05 PM: LHP Marco Gonzales (4-1, 5.22 ERA) vs. LHP Andrew Heaney (4-3, 3.76 ERA)
  • Sunday 6/4 @ 11:35 AM: RHP Bryce Miller (3-2, 3.00 ERA) vs. RHP Nathan Eovaldi (7-2, 2.42 ERA)

American League West Standings as of Thursday morning:

  • 1.Texas Rangers (35-20)
  • 2.Houston Astros (32-23), 3.0 GB
  • 3.Los Angeles Angels (30-27), 6.0 GB
  • 4.Seattle Mariners (29-27), 6.5 GB
  • 5.Oakland Athletics (12-46)

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