Ray eats bug, Mariners win 6th in row, 4-0 over Guardians

Sep 3, 2022, 7:48 AM | Updated: 9:03 pm

Seattle players Ty France (23), Eugenio Suarez (28), J.P. Crawford (3) and Adam Frazier (26) celebr...

Seattle players Ty France (23), Eugenio Suarez (28), J.P. Crawford (3) and Adam Frazier (26) celebrate after a win over the Cleveland Guardians in a baseball game in Cleveland, Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Phil Long)

(AP Photo/Phil Long)

CLEVELAND (AP) — Robbie Ray swallowed a bug, and ate up the Guardians again.

Ray started September the way he finished August with six solid innings as the Seattle Mariners won their sixth straight, 4-0 on Saturday night over a slumping Cleveland club searching for a spark.

Ray (12-8), who won the AL Cy Young Award last year with Toronto, went 3-0 in five starts last month. The left-hander allowed six hits, but not a costly one against Cleveland. He pitched seven scoreless innings against the AL Central-leading Guardians in a win last week.

Early in this outing, Ray was between pitches when a bug flew into this mouth.

“I ate one about a month ago in the backyard playing with the kids but never in a game before,” he said, smiling. “It kind of just went all the way down. I was taking a deep breath in and just sucked it in. It caught me off guard a little bit.

“That’s a first for sure.”

After Ray through 87 pitches on a heavy, humid night, Seattle’s bullpen took over and finished off the shutout with Matt Brash, Andrés Muñoz and Paul Sewald working one inning apiece.

Seattle, trying to end a 20-season playoff drought, currently holds one of the AL’s three wild-card spots and has won 13 of 17.

The Guardians lost their fourth straight and have been shut out in three of them. They’ve scored just one run in their last four games and have failed to score in four of six.

Fortunately for the Guardians, they’re still leading the division by one game over Minnesota, which was beaten 13-0 by the suddenly surging Chicago White Sox, who are only two back.

Cleveland had some chances, but stranded nine runners and hit a few balls right at Seattle fielders.

Manager Terry Francona isn’t panicking.

“I do know the best way to get out of it is just to keep battling like crazy,” he said. “Give yourself enough chances. We’ll get it. We’ll figure it out. It’s not a whole lot of fun right now. No one’s showing up to not score and lose.

“But the only way I know to do it right is to just to keep fighting and keep clawing and don’t give up.”

Mariners first baseman Ty France homered in the first inning off rookie Xzavion Curry (0-1), who struggled with control in his second career start and was pulled in the fifth after walking the bases loaded.

The Guardians put together two threats against Ray, but he was able to work out of them both times — retiring rookie Tyler Freeman twice.

After giving up a pair of singles in the third, Ray got Freeman to bounce into an inning-ending double play. Then with runners at first and third and two outs in the fifth, Ray struck out Freeman with All-Star José Ramírez waiting on deck.

“They put the ball in play and I just felt like tonight we were able to make them hit the pitches that I wanted them to hit,” Ray said. “The big double play there was huge and a couple timely strikeouts. But for the most part, it was them hitting balls at guys.”

France put the Mariners up 1-0 just seven pitches into the game with his 18th homer, a towering shot onto the pedestrian plaza in left field.

Seattle added an unearned run in the second, set up by two walks and fielding error, when Curry walked Mitch Haniger with the bases full to force in a run. The Mariners, however, blew a chance for a big inning when Eugenio Suárez lined to third.

Curry couldn’t find the plate in the fifth, walking three straight before manager Terry Francona took the ball. Cal Raleigh then delivered an RBI single off Nick Sandlin, who walked J.P. Crawford to put the Mariners up 4-0.

That was more than enough for Ray, who followed a solid outing by Luis Castillo with one of his own. In four starts against Cleveland in the last week, Ray and Castillo have allowed one run in 25 innings with 24 strikeouts.

Ray agreed that he and Castillo can be a lethal combo in the postseason.

“You’ve seen what he’s done and I feel like us back to back is a good combination against anybody,” he said.


Guardians: RHP Zach Plesac (broken hand) will be re-examined in one week. Dr. Thomas Graham concurred with the team’s diagnosis of a non-displaced fracture and suggested Plesac kept his hand immobilized in a splint. Plesac got hurt when he punched the ground in frustration after giving up a homer in Seattle last week.


Mariners: RHP George Kirby (6-3, 3.16 ERA) was the AL’s Rookie of the Month for August, going 4-0 with a 2.15 ERA in five starts. Kirby has walked one or fewer batters in each of his 19 starts, the longest streak to begin a career in history.

Guardians: RHP Cal Quantrill (11-5, 3.50) is unbeaten since July 5 — a span of 10 starts — and has been Cleveland’s most dependable starter. He’s 12-0 in 39 career games at Progressive Field and has gone 31 straight home starts without a loss.


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]

1 year ago

Joe Jarzynka...

Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]

1 year ago

FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...

Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]

1 year ago

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...

Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]

1 year ago

FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...

Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]

1 year ago

FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...

Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]

1 year ago

Ray eats bug, Mariners win 6th in row, 4-0 over Guardians