Another strong outing for Iwakuma as Mariners defeat Rangers
(The Sports Xchange) - Seattle starter Hisashi Iwakuma again showed he was in a groove as he allowed just two runs in seven innings to help the Mariners beat the Texas Rangers 3-2 on Tuesday.
Iwakuma, who had a no-hitter in his last outing against Baltimore, gave up just five hits in seven innings.
"I felt all right today," Iwakuma said. "I tried to keep the ball down in the zone, make early contact. I was able to do that."
Texas right fielder Choo Shin-Soo singled with one out in the bottom of the first to ensure Iwakuma would not get successive no-hitters, which may have actually helped the pitcher settle down.
"It's hard to say," Iwakuma said. "Maybe I was relieved. If I had gone more and more longer, maybe it would have become a different kind of burden. Who knows?"
The Mariners gave Iwakuma more than enough run support in the top of the first, scoring three times off Texas rookie right-hander Chi Chi Gonzalez.
Designated hitter Nelson Cruz lined an RBI double to left field before Seth Smith hit a two-run homer into the Texas bullpen in right-center.
The Rangers got a run off Iwakuma in the second inning on a solo homer by second baseman Rougned Odor, then trimmed the lead to 3-2 in the seventh on a sacrifice fly by catcher Bobby Wilson.
"He (Iwakuma) was pitching everything down," said Odor. Continued...