Seattle, WA – Lance Berkman belted a three-run homer and Jeff Baker added a two-run shot, as the Texas Rangers topped the Seattle Mariners, 9-5, to start a three-game series.
Justin Grimm (4-3) scattered 10 hits, gave up three runs and struck out five in 6 1/3 innings to help the Rangers to their seventh win in 10 games.
Kyle Seager went 3-for-5 with an RBI and Brendan Ryan drove in a pair for Seattle. Kendrys Morales and Raul Ibanez each had a pair of hits and an RBI for the Mariners, losers of a season-high seven in a row.
Joe Saunders (3-5) yielded eight hits and six runs over five innings to suffer his first loss in 14 starts (9-1) in Seattle.
Jurickson Profar singled and Mitch Moreland doubled to left prior to Berkman's homer to left field to give the Rangers a 5-2 lead in the third inning.
Morales scored on an Ibanez double in the bottom half, but Elvis Andrus lifted a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
Texas tacked on three runs in the seventh for a 9-3 cushion. Nelson Cruz laced an RBI single to center, and later in the frame David Murphy connected off Lucas Luetge for a two-run base hit.
Ryan and Seager each had RBI doubles off Joe Ortiz in the ninth, but Joe Nathan came in and struck out Michael Morse to secure his 15th save.
Morales singled in a run in the opening inning, but Baker's two-run blast to right in the second gave Texas the lead.
Seattle scored once in the second, but could have had more if not for a brutal umpiring mistake. Ibanez and Justin Smoak singled prior to Jesus Sucre grounding a ball that ended up as a phantom double play. First baseman Moreland threw to shortstop Elvis Andrus for the force at second. The return throw to first saw Moreland and Grimm come together. Both reached for the ball, but Moreland's foot was on the base and Grimm's was not. Grimm caught the ball in his glove and first base umpire Jeff Nelson called Sucre out.
"Everybody was just focused on the bag. I thought he just came off the bag. I didn't find out until later in replay, that he didn't catch the ball," Mariners manager Eric Wedge said.
Rangers manager Ron Washington admitted his team got lucky.
"I didn't have to see the replay. We caught a break there," he said.
Texas is 6-2 versus the Mariners this season ... Prior to the game, the Mariners selected the contract of Sucre from Triple-A Tacoma and designated infielder Robert Andino for assignment, and recalled infielder Carlos Triunfel from Tacoma.