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The Los Angeles Angels became the first team in the major leagues to clinch a playoff spot on Monday night, with Matt Shoemaker pitching five-hit ball into the eighth inning of an 8-1 victory over the Seattle Mariners. David Freese and Brennan Boesch homered for the big league-leading Angels , who reduced their magic number to three in the AL West race with their 11th victory in 12 games.
15, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif. . Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Matt Shoemaker, center, gets a fist bump from a coach in the dugout before a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners Monday, Sept.
After sitting out six of the last seven games with a sore left ankle, Mariners left fielder Dustin Ackley was back in action for Monday's series opener against the Angels and hopes he can continue playing the rest of the stretch run. Ackley missed four games, then went 0-for-3 in Friday's 4-2 win over the A's before being held out of the final two games of that set.
If the Mariners are to remain in the playoff picture, they'll need to succeed against a team that doesn't often lose. Beginning Monday, the Mariners will play the first of seven remaining games against the American League West-leading Angels, starting a four-game set in Anaheim.
Oakland won consecutive games for the first time in three weeks and more importantly stretched its lead in the AL wild card race. The A's now hold a 1½ game advantage over Kansas City and a 2½ game lead over the Mariners.
On reflection, Seattle Mariners left fielder Dustin Ackley's troublesome left ankle, while better, still isn't quite game-ready. He returned to the bench Saturday after going hitless Friday in three at-bats.
It's been a while - 13 years to be exact. But on Saturday night, the Mariners and their fans got to relive the feelings of playoff baseball again.
It has been a slippery slope for the Athletics, and though they still remain in the playoff picture, wins are more necessary than ever to remain in it. Sunday will be the last chance for the A's to wedge any distance between themselves and the Mariners, who are breathing down their necks in the American League Wild Card chase.
I'm tempted to leave Jeff's piece below up to function as the game thread, because it encapsulates what this game feels like so well. As it turned out, the M's didn't exactly build off the momentum they had following that sweep of the Blue Jays.
Mariners 4, Athletics 2: Logan Morrison smacked a tiebreaking homer in the fifth inning as Seattle defeated visiting Oakland in the opener of a three-game series. Robinson Cano and Kendrys Morales also went deep for the Mariners, who won for just the second time in five games.
Left fielder Dustin Ackley returned Friday to the Mariners' lineup after missing the four previous games because of a sore left ankle and sees no reason he won't be good to go for the remainder of the year. "It's progressively gotten better every day since they've given me days off," Ackley said prior to Friday's game against Oakland at Safeco Field.
Sep 10, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager and shortstop Brad Miller celebrate after both scored a run off a 2-RBI double hit by catcher Mike Zunino during the second inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports Listen up M's fans, if there was ever a weekend to get out to Safeco field and cheer on the Mariners, THIS IS THE TIME TO DO IT.
American League West rivals Oakland and Seattle, two teams headed in opposite directions the last six weeks, meet Friday at Safeco Field to open a three-game series that suddenly looms large in the Wild Card race. Though the A's were threatening to run away with the AL West earlier in the season, things have changed dramatically heading into the home stretch.
Left fielder Dustin Ackley was out of the Mariners lineup for a fourth consecutive game Wednesday, but the hope is he'll return to action Friday when Seattle opens a three-game series against the Athletics, according to manager Lloyd McClendon. The 26-year-old has been dealing with bone spurs in his left ankle.
Updated: Tue Sep 16, 2014 07:36 am
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