Mariners 5, Phillies 3
(Philadelphia, PA) Tuesday marked the beginning of a nine-game road trip for the Seattle Mariners as they opened a three-game set in Philadelphia with the reigning NL Champions in the Phillies. A late pitching change shook things up as Logan Gilbert was pushed back to Wednesday while Marco Gonzales got bumped up to start game one. It didn’t look like it affected the crafty lefty in any way as Marco delivered a solid performance while Jarred Kelenic continued to be one of the hottest hitters in baseball as he and Teoscar Hernandez powered the Mariners to a 5-3 win over the Phillies.
Both pitchers really rolled through the order the first time through. Marco Gonzales only allowed one hit in the first three innings and a double play helped the lefty get out of a little bit of trouble in the bottom of the 4th. Bailey Falter meanwhile did not falter through the first four innings. Falter only allowed one hit in those innings and it was a double by Jarred Kelenic. The lefties gave notice that runs were not going to come easily.
The Mariners would land the first blow and it would be one of the hottest players on the planet. Jarred Kelenic continued his breakout year with a high and long solo home run into right center field. The solo shot once again traveled over 420 feet and the seventh home run for Kelenic in 2023 gave the M’s a 1-0 lead.
Seattle wouldn’t be done in the top of the 5th. After the Kelenic home run, a two out single by rookie Jose Caballero kept the inning alive. Caballero then recorded his second career stolen base and the throw from All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto would skip past second base and into center field. Caballero trotted to third and let J.P. Crawford hurt his former team. Crawford grounded one that looked like it was getting into the outfield, but second baseman Bryson Stott made a phenomenal stop on the infield dirt. Fortunately for the Mariners, Crawford’s speed made the stop irrelevant as he legged out an RBI single to extend the lead to 2-0.
Philadelphia would finally get to Marco in the bottom of the 5th. Edmundo Sosa crushed a pretty well located changeup 421 feet into left field for his third home run of the season. That would be the first and only run allowed by Marco Gonzales of the game as his day was done after the 5th inning with the Mariner up 2-1. The short notice start was handled nicely by Gonzales who went five innings while allowing one run on four hits with one walk and two strikeouts. Marco looks like he has learned how to pitch with what he has and his success just makes this rotation even scarier.
The Mariners got that run back plus one in the top of the 6th. A one out double by Eugenio Suarez put a runner in scoring position with another red hot Mariner coming to the plate in Teoscar Hernandez. Teoscar stayed hot as he hit a hanging curveball on a line over the left field at 108.7 MPH off the bat. The two-run shot was his sixth of the season and extended the Seattle lead to 4-1.
Once again, the Phillies answered but it could have been a lot worse for the M’s in the bottom of the 6th. With Matt Brash on to pitch, Philadelphia loaded the bases with just one out. Alec Bohm smacked what looked like a two run base hit, but a sliding stop by Ty France at first kept the ball on the infield. France threw it to Crawford covering second to cut down Realmuto for the second out. The second run did come in for the Phillies to make it 4-2 with a threat still brewing. With runners on the corners and two outs, Brash settled in and got Edmundo Sosa to chase a slider for the strikeout to end the inning. The fantastic defensive play by Ty France saved a potential big inning and kept a little bit of breathing room for the Mariners.
A weird play began the top of the 7th for the Mariners. Cal Raleigh hit what looked like a home run off of the top of the wall in right field. However, according to the Phillies broadcast, the ball has to go over the railing in right field which it did not. That made an even cooler story as Raleigh cruised into third with his second career triple to leadoff the inning. Jose Caballero would follow up by driving in his first run of his MLB career as he flew out to fairly deep center. Brandon Marsh made the catch but it was deep enough to score Raleigh and extend the lead back out to 5-2.
That score remained the same headed into the bottom of the 9th which created another save opportunity for Paul Sewald. While Sewald has been dominant as of late, he had some struggles on Tuesday night. A nice piece of hitting by Alec Bohm to begin the inning led to a double for the Phillies first baseman. After a failed bunt attempt, Edmundo Sosa recorded a swinging bunt but was thrown out by Cal Raleigh at first base as Bohm advanced to third with one out. Sewald then burned a fastball past Brandon Marsh for a strikeout and put the Phillies down to their last out. They would not go down easily. Jake Cave came into the game as a pinch hitter and lined a base hit to center field to score Bohm making it 5-3 and bringing the tying run to the plate in Bryson Stott. Stott made Sewald work, but the Mariner closer got him swinging with a fastball to end the game and give the Mariners the game one win 5-3.
Seattle (11-12) now moves to 5-3 in the opening game of a series and will look to earn their second straight series win and get back to .500 on Wednesday at 3:40pm. Logan Gilbert (1-1, 3.57 ERA) is expected to get the start after being pushed back a day. Philadelphia (11-13) will look to start a new winning streak after having their three-game win streak snapped in the opener. They will give the ball to former Mariner, Taijuan Walker (2-1, 3.80 ERA) as the Phils look to even the series.
I am starting to think Jarred Kelenic and Teoscar Hernandez have a friendly competition going on. Every time one guy comes up with a big hit, the other responds almost immediately. These two guys are absolutely hammering the ball and are giving the M’s the power that had been lacking in the first week of the season. The usual power hitters like Cal Raleigh, Eugenio Suarez, and Julio Rodriguez still haven’t got their power swings going. If all those guys are clicking at the same time to mix in with Ty France and J.P. Crawford who just get on base all the time, this offense is going to explode. We are seeing the potential of what this lineup can be and I like what I am seeing.
- Jarred Kelenic- 3-4, 2B, HR, RBI, R
- Teoscar Hernandez- 1-4, HR, 2 RBI, R
- Marco Gonzales (W, 2-0)- 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO
- Edmundo Sosa- 1-4, HR, RBI, R
- Alec Bohm- 1-4, 2B, RBI, R
- Bailey Falter (L, 0-4)- 6 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 SO