Seattle, WA – Hisashi Iwakuma spun seven strong innings of three-run ball, as the Seattle Mariners held off the Texas Rangers, 6-3, Friday in the opener of a three-game set at Safeco Field.
Iwakuma (7-5) scattered eight hits and struck out four without walking a batter to snap a two-start skid. Stephen Pryor pitched a scoreless eighth and Tom Wilhelmsen blanked Texas in the ninth to nail down his 28th save of the season.
Miguel Olivo clubbed a two-run homer and Carlos Triunfel registered his first major league RBI, as the Mariners snapped a four-game skid.
Martin Perez (1-2) surrendered four runs -- three earned -- on six hits and two walks over four frames to take the loss.
David Murphy finished with three hits, including a solo homer and knocked in all three runs for the Rangers, who lost back-to-back games for the first time since Aug. 13-15, spanning 34 games, which marks a new franchise record.
The Rangers still sit atop the AL West, leading Oakland by four games.
Seattle struck first in the second inning, as Justin Smoak ripped a leadoff double and Michael Saunders worked a walk. Casper Wells followed two batters later with a double into left field, plating Smoak for a 1-0 lead.
Franklin Gutierrez tripled to start the third and quickly scored when Perez uncorked a wild pitch to give Seattle a 2-0 edge.
Texas battled back in the fourth when Michael Young smacked a one-out single and moved to third on Nelson Cruz's double into left field. Murphy followed with a single into center field, scoring Young and Cruz to tie the game.
The Mariners responded in the bottom half as Wells ripped a one-out single and came around to score on Triunfel's double to left field. Triunfel moved to third on a groundout and then scored when Young was unable to field Gutierrez's grounder.
Texas trimmed the margin in the sixth when Murphy clubbed a two-out, solo shot into right-center field, but Olivo belted a two-run blast down the left-field line in the eighth to account for the final margin.
Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton went back to Texas to see the team's medical staff due to a sinus infection. He hasn't played since Tuesday's 11-3 road loss against the LA Angels ... Seattle snapped a six-game home losing streak ... Young has a 10-game hitting streak ... Texas' record was 33 games without back-to-back losses set back in 1977.