for this game

Suzuki, Johnson deliver Blanton 13th win in grand fashion

Sep 11, 2007 - 6:40 AM By Paul Lowenberg PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

SEATTLE (Ticker) - Kurt Suzuki and Dan Johnson hit grand slams and Joe Blanton worked seven strong innings as the Oakland Athletics handed the Seattle Mariners another blow to their dwindling wild card hopes with a 9-3 victory Monday night.

The win snapped a three-game A's losing streak and was the Mariners' 14th defeat in their last 16 games. Seattle (75-67) fell 5 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees (81-62) in the American League wild card chase.

Suzuki's first career grand slam helped give Blanton (13-9), now 4-0 against the Mariners at Safeco field, a 5-0 cushion in the second inning.

Johnson's 15th homer of the season in the ninth off Ryan Rowland-Smith extended a 5-3 lead and capped the scoring.

"The offense did a great job of getting me an early lead," Blanton said. "I just threw my game and got a lot of balls in play."

Blanton carried a shutout into the seventh before the Mariners scored twice. Ben Broussard singled and Jose Vidro doubled him to third. Both runners scored on consecutive groundouts by Kenji Johjima and Jose Lopez.

Yuniesky Betancourt singled and took third when center fielder Kevin Thompson misplayed Ichiro Suzuki's single for an error. But Blanton finally got Adrian Beltre to ground out to first after a 12-pitch at-bat.

"It was a tough battle that he (Blanton) ended up winning," Athletics manager Bob Geren said. "He did a heck of a job."

Blanton allowed just two runs and eight hits with a walk and a strikeout.

Jose Guillen blasted his 20th home run of the season in the eighth off Athletics reliever Alan Embree. Huston Street recorded the last four outs to record his 13th save.

Oakland chased Seattle starter Horacio Ramirez (8-6) after just 1 2/3 innings - his shortest start of the year. Mark Ellis singled with one out in the second inning and Ramirez walked Johnson to set the stage for Jack Hannahan's run-scoring single.

Daric Barton, making his major league debut at first base after his contract was purchased from Class AAA Sacramento prior to the game, drew a walk and Kurt Suzuki belted an 0-1 offering from Ramirez over the left field fence for his seventh homer of the year.

Barton finished with a double, single, a pair of walks and a run scored.

Even though Ramirez, who fell to 6-2 at home, had a rough outing, Mariners manager John McLaren was somewhat forgiving of his struggling starter.

"If you go back over his games, it's just a pitch here or there and this was the case," McLaren said. "I thought in the first inning he really came out and looked great. He was throwing the ball well, he was crisp and went right at the hitters. It turned on him pretty quick."

But Ramirez, whose ERA rose to 6.80, was not as forgiving of himself.

"There are no excuses, no nothing," Ramirez said. "I didn't make the pitch in a big situation and he (Suzuki) hit it out of the ballpark."

Meanwhile, Geren was more than pleased with the play of his new first baseman.

"Obviously, Daric Barton's debut was all you could ask for with two tremendous at-bats where he ended up walking, he got his double, he had a hard-hit ball down the line for a single and a line out to left," Geren said. "A great debut from a guy we've heard a lot about who's going to be a really nice hitter. He looked all the part tonight."

The A's lost the opportunity for another run in the seventh when Jack Cust, who had struck out three times, drew a walk and pinch runner Thompson was thrown out at the plate trying to score on Ellis' double to left.








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    OAKLAND 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 9 13 1
    SEATTLE 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 3 10 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: OAK - JOE BLANTON, ALAN EMBREE (8TH), HUSTON STREET (8TH) AND KURT
    SUZUKI
    SEA - HORACIO RAMIREZ, RYAN FEIERABEND (2ND), GEORGE
    SHERRILL (8TH), BRANDON MORROW (9TH)

    Sep 11 12:56 AM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    GRAND SLAM BY DAN JOHNSON (15) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN THE
    9TH OFF RYAN ROWLAND-SMITH SCORED MARCO SCUTARO, NICK SWISHER AND
    MARK ELLIS.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 9, SEATTLE 3
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: J HANNAHAN (.265, 1-FOR-4, RBI)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 11 12:45 AM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JOSE GUILLEN (20) TO CENTER WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 8TH OFF ALAN EMBREE.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 5, SEATTLE 3
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: B BROUSSARD (.289, 2-FOR-3)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 11 12:22 AM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY JOSE LOPEZ SCORED JOSE VIDRO.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 5
    SEATTLE 2 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: Y BETANCOURT (.286, 1-FOR-2)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 10 11:58 PM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY KENJI JOHJIMA SCORED BEN BROUSSARD.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J VIDRO ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 5
    SEATTLE 1 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: J LOPEZ (.261, 1-FOR-2)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 10 11:58 PM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    GRAND SLAM BY KURT SUZUKI (7) TO LEFT WITH 1 OUT IN THE 2ND
    OFF HORACIO RAMIREZ SCORED DAN JOHNSON, JACK HANNAHAN AND DARIC
    BARTON.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 5, SEATTLE 0
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: S STEWART (.282, 0-FOR-1)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 10 10:34 PM


  • AL
    AT SEATTLE - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JACK HANNAHAN SCORED MARK ELLIS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J HANNAHAN ON FIRST, D JOHNSON ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 1
    SEATTLE 0 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: D BARTON (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Athletics vs. MarinersSep 10 10:29 PM