Archive for the ‘ Hot Stove League ’ Category

Cactus League Report

The Cactus League Report officially debuts tonight from the Valley of the Sun. The live, 2-hour show will be hosted by Mariners announcers Rick Rizzs and Aaron Goldsmith from The Salty Senorita in Peoria. Fans attending Spring Training are invited to see the show in person. For those in Seattle, the show will run from 7-9 p.m. PT (one hour delay from the live show) on ESPN 710 Seattle and online on

Here is a rundown of scheduled guests:

Cactus League

Mariners Mondays – Dominating Yu

Felix Hernandez allowed 1 run over 8.0 innings in the Mariners 6-1 win over the Rangers May 21, 2012. (Getty Images)

Felix Hernandez allowed 1 run over 8.0 innings in the Mariners 6-1 win over the Rangers May 21, 2012. (Getty Images)

Tonight on Mariners Mondays on ROOT SPORTS – the Mariners have Yu Darvish’s number.

The Rangers’ star pitcher Yu Darvish was a 16-game winner in 2012, but the Mariners seem to have his number.

Darvish made his Major League debut against the Mariners on April 9, 2012. The Mariners welcomed him by scoring five runs in the first two innings. The Mariners wouldn’t win that game, but they would come out on top in two other Darvish outings.

The first was May 21 with a dream match-up of Darvish vs. Felix Hernandez.

Darvish lasted just four innings, surrendering four runs and six walks, the shortest outing of his season. Felix, meantime, shut down the potent Texas offense for eight innings when Mitch Moreland hit a leadoff solo homer for the Rangers only run.

Ichiro greeted his countryman with a single and triple and two RBI, leading the Mariners to a 4-1 win.

A few months later, July 14, Darvish and Felix met again at Safeco Field with the same result.

Felix allowed only three hits and struck out 12 in the Mariners 7-0 win. Darvish had control problems from the start. Darvish’s 33-pitch first inning went something like this: walk, hit batter, single, walk, E3, two-run single. The Mariners were up 4-0 after their first at-bat. Darvish lasted only 6 1/3 innings giving up eight hits, seven earned runs, four walks and four strikeouts.

In his first three starts against the Mariners last season, Darvish had a 9.00 ERA.

Mariners Mondays airs at 7:30 pm on ROOT SPORTS every Monday through March 25, one week before the season opener against the Oakland A’s on April 1.

Cactus League Report Radio Show

Hot Stove

The Mariners Cactus League Report (or the Hot Stove League Show) airs tonight from 7-9 p.m. on ESPN 710 Seattle and on the internet via

This will be the final show hosted in Seattle, as the Cactus League Report will make its Arizona debut next Tuesday at the Salty Senorita in Peoria, Ariz. ESPN 710 Seattle’s Shannon Drayer and Matt Pitman will host tonight’s 2-hour show, with scheduled guests Carter Capps, Danny Hultzen and Eric Thames. Baseball writer Rob Neyer is also scheduled to join the show, and you can listen to the interview with Shannon and Felix Hernandez from the news conference announcing his seven-year contract.

You can listen to the show online at

Mariners Mondays — Comebacks and Walk-offs Part 2

Eric Thames hit the walk-off single Aug. 14 vs. Tampa Bay.

Eric Thames hit the walk-off single Aug. 14 vs. Tampa Bay.

Tonight on Mariners Mondays on ROOT SPORTS – a look at four times the Mariners came back to win with late inning heroics.

On April 11, the Rangers took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Pitchers Kevin Millwood and Colby Lewis were well matched until the Rangers hit back-to-back home runs off Steve Delebar in the 7th.

The Rangers tacked on another and it looked like they would cruise to the win. That was until the 8th inning when John Jaso tripled and then scored on a Dustin Ackley single, snapping a 23 inning scoreless streak.

In the 9th, Justin Smoak led off with a single, followed by Kyle Seager’s double. Jesus Montero advanced the runners with a sacrifice fly and Michael Saunders scored two with an RBI double. Jaso again came through with a solid single that scored Saunders for the third run of the inning, capping a rally off Rangers closer Joe Nathan for the 4-3 win.

Rookie left-hander Lucas Luetge had two strikeouts in 1 1/3 innings for his first Major League victory.

Jaso’s late inning heroics were on display again on May 7, when the Tigers came to town.

Starter Blake Beavan struggled early in the game and left the mound after getting hit on the elbow by a line drive in the 3rd inning. Tigers starter Doug Fister, the former Mariner pitcher, who was making his second start of the season, allowed just four hits, walked none, had three strike outs and looked to be on the way to his first win of the season.

That is until manager Jim Leyland lifted Fister for reliever Octavio Dotel, who lacked control from the beginning. He walked Brendan Ryan and Ichiro, advanced the runners on a wild pitch, then surrendered a two run double to Jesus Montero to tie the game. Jaso sacrificed Munenori Kawasaki in the bottom of the 9th, who scored the game winning run in the three-run comeback.

Another exciting walk-off came on August 14 against the Tampa Bay Rays (just one day before Felix would throw his perfect game), ending the Rays seven-game win streak.

Starter Kevin Millwood looked like he was off to a rocky start but regained his footing and gave up just two runs in seven innings and struck out a season-high eight. He was matched by Tampa Bay starter Matt Moore, who allowed one run on six hits and struck out nine.

Kyle Seager started the rally with a single off reliever Fernando Rodney, followed by a bunt base hit by Chone Figgins. Justin Smoak tied the game with a deep fly to center. Eric Thames, who had struck out in his first three at-bats, stepped up to the plate with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, facing one of the best closers in baseball. Thames was down to his final strike when he lined a changeup into short right, scoring Figgins, earning the Mariners a 3-2 win and receiving a beat-down from his teammates as he headed for 1st.

The final “last at-bat win” goes back to April 27th when the Mariners visited the Blue Jays in Toronto. Canada native Michael Saunders had spent the winter working on his hitting with a private instructor and it showed. Saunders had two home runs, including a grand slam in the 10th as the Mariners rallied to beat the Jays 9-5.

Relive the fun of those late-innings heroics on ROOT SPORTS tonight at 7:30 pm.

Mariner Mondays – Taking Two From the Angels


Tom Wilhelmsen recorded his first career save (and 1 of 29 in ’12) June 4 vs. the Angels. (Getty Images)

Tonight on Mariners Mondays on ROOT SPORTS, a couple of fun wins over a division rival when the Mariners beat the Los Angeles Angels by the same score, two nights apart.

Facing the Angels at Anaheim on June 4, the Mariners had an 8-4 lead heading into the 8th. After a passed ball and a couple of hits, the Angels had cut the lead to two runs with one out and Albert Pujols coming up to bat. But reliever Tom Wilhelmsen kept Pujols in the yard, caught John Hester in a rundown, struck out Mark Trumbo and then pitched a scoreless 9th to give the Mariners an 8-6 win.

And as for all that offense, the Mariners scored seven off starter Ervin Santana in 4 2/3 innings, and added another in the 8th on an Ichiro homer.

Two nights later, the Mariners won the series with another 8-6 game, this time on the strength of Michael Saunders three hits, another Ichiro homer and Kyle Seager’s four RBI.

Reliever Stephen Pryor also shone when he stifled potential Angels rallies in the 6th and 7th innings with double-play balls.

Relive these intra-division victories on ROOT SPORTS tonight at 7:30pm.

Hot Stove League Radio Show

Hot Stove League

The Mariners Hot Stove League Radio Show airs tonight from 7-9 pm on 710 ESPN Seattle and streamed live online at

The 2-hour show will be hosted by Shannon Drayer and Matt Pitman. Guests are scheduled to include:

  • Catcher Mike Zunino
  • Right-handed pitcher Shawn Kelley
  • First Base Coach Mike Brumley
  • Hitting Coach Dave Hansen
  • Longtime baseball writer Larry LaRue
  • Oakland A’s radio announcer Vince Cotroneo

Mariners Mondays – Two Felix Shutouts


Tonight on Mariners Mondays on ROOT SPORTS, Felix does what he does best – dominates unsuspecting hitters.

On June 28, the Red Sox were at Safeco Field, and for seven innings, Felix was evenly matched with Boston starter Franklin Morales. By the time Felix walked off the mound in after the top of the 9th, both teams had a handful of hits, but there was still no score.

Not wanting to spoil Felix’s gem, John Jaso and Casper Wells stepped up. Wells lined a double into the gap in left-center. Justin Smoak was walked, and Skipper Eric Wedge lifted Miguel Olivo for pinch-hitter John Jaso, who at the time was leading the team with game-winning RBIs. He didn’t waste any time, lignin a single to right, giving Wells just enough time to score on catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia to give the Mariners a 1-0 win.

By August 27, Felix was on a roll. In 14 starts, he was 9-0 with a 1.40 ERA, 100 strikeouts, 17 walks and a perfect game. Facing the Twins in Minnesota, he was once again in top form, and although Felix needed just a single Mariners run to earn the victory, this time, the heroics came in the 8th on an Eric Thames homerun.

With Felix’s 1-0 win over the Twins, he notched his 23rd career complete game and 9th shutout.

Relive these two (of many) Felix gems on ROOT SPORTS tonight at 7:30pm.

Hot Stove League Radio Show

Hot Stove League

In exactly two weeks Mariners Pitchers & Catchers will report to Spring Training in Peoria, Arizona. And to continue to get you ready for all the spring action, the The Mariners Hot Stove League Radio Show airs tonight from 7-9 pm on 710 ESPN Seattle and streamed live online at

The 2-hour show will be hosted by Rick Rizzs, Shannon Drayer and Matt Pitman. Guests are scheduled to include:

  • Outfielder Raul Ibañez
  • Former Mariner pitcher Mark Langston
  • ESPN’s Tim Kurkjian
  • Longtime sportswriter Jim Street

Mariners Mondays – Comebacks and Walk-offs

Tonight’s Mariners Mondays on ROOT SPORTS features three games with late inning heroics that sent Mariners fans home happy.

June 2, the Mariners are at Chicago to take on the White Sox. The night before, a Mariners error in the 8th inning helped the Sox win their 9th in a row.

But with the help of a two homer game from Ichiro, a strong outing from the bullpen, the Mariners topped the White Sox 10-8 in 12 innings.

Ichiro led off the game with a homer (the 37th leadoff homer of his career). Justin Smoak went deep to open the second, and Ichiro homered again to start the third inning.

But by the 7th, the White Sox led 7-5. The Mariners came back with three runs in the top of the 8th to take the lead, only to see the White Sox tie it up with a solo homer in the bottom of the inning.

The score stayed tied until the top of the 12th when John Jaso doubled home the tiebreaking run and then scored the winning run courtesy of a Chone Figgins single. Mariners win 10-8.

Two weeks later, hosting the San Francisco Giants, Justin Smoak didn’t need to cross home plate himself to help his team to victory. The Giants scored in the top of the first and the Mariners got a run in the bottom of the second for a 1-1 tie, and with starters Madison Bumgarner and Felix Hernandez on the mound, there the score remained.

Reliever Tom Wilhelmsen took over in the 9th. With the score still tied, the Giants loaded the bases with only one out. But Wilhelmsen struck out Melky Cabrera (then the National League’s leading hitter) on three pitches, and got pinch-hitter Nate Schierholtz to ground out to end the threat.

The Mariners opened the bottom if the 9th with back-to-back singles, setting the stage for Smoak’s dramatic game-winning single to left. Final score, 2-1 Mariners.

Two days later, at Arizona, Ichiro again starred with his 2,500th career hit and a 4-5 performance as the Mariners outlasted the Diamond Backs 12-9 in 10 innings.

Relive the fun of those late-innings heroics on ROOT SPORTS tonight at 7:30 pm.

Mariners Hot Stove League Show

Hot Stove League

The Mariners Hot Stove League Radio Show airs tonight from 7-9 pm on 710 ESPN Seattle and streamed live on The show will be co-hosted by Rick Rizzs & Shannon Drayer. Players who are scheduled to appear on the show include newly acquired outfielder Michael Morse and Ken Griffey Jr. will call into the show to talk about joining the Mariners Hall of Fame. Additionally, new broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith, USA Today baseball writer Paul White, Texas Rangers radio announcer Eric Nadel and Mariners Marketing Manager Mandy Lincoln (talking about FanFest) will be on the 2-hour show.


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