Seager homers as Mariners beat Blue Jays
Toronto, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - Kyle Seager hit his sixth home run and James Paxton threw six solid innings to lead the Seattle Mariners to a 3-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.
Paxton (3-2) saw his 20-inning scoreless streak come to an end in the first inning, but he pitched his fifth straight quality start with two runs allowed on four hits and three walks with four strikeouts.
Chris Taylor had two of Seattle's six hits, and Willie Bloomquist's two-run double in the third inning was the difference.
Mark Buehrle (5-4) allowed three runs on five hits and three walks in 7 1/3 innings with four strikeouts. Chris Colabello hit his third home run for the Blue Jays.
"(Buehrle's) track record is pretty special," said Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon. "Today, he elevated a few pitches, and we were able to take advantage."
It only took three batters for Paxton's scoreless streak to come to an end. After Josh Donaldson led off with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch during Jose Bautista's walk, Edwin Encarnacion hit a sacrifice fly to give the Blue Jays a 1-0 lead.
With one out in the top of the second, Seager extended his hitting streak to nine games with a solo home run to left field to tie the game.
An inning later, the Blue Jays' inexperience in the outfield cost them. With one out, Colabello's misplay allowed Taylor to reach with a ground-rule double. After Rickie Weeks walked, Bloomquist hit a deep fly ball to left field. Danny Valencia, who had 14 career appearances in the outfield prior to Saturday's game, approached the wall cautiously and could not get to the ball as it bounced off the wall while two runs scored.
Paxton retired eight in a row after Valencia's single in the first inning, and Valencia singled again in the fourth. He tried stretching it into a double but was thrown out at second by Bloomquist. That mistake proved costly when Colabello hammered a home run to left field to cut Toronto's deficit in half.
The Mariners appeared to be in trouble in the sixth when Paxton walked the first two batters, but after getting Russell Martin to pop out for the first out, Colabello lined into a double play when Robinson Cano grabbed the ball and flipped to Taylor in one motion to complete the twin killing at second base.
After Paxton departed, three Seattle relievers combined to hold the Blue Jays hitless over the final three innings. Fernando Rodney struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth to record his 12th save.
Toronto is a season-high seven games under .500 ... Rodney had not thrown a 1-2-3 inning since April 29 ... Buehrle's three walks were a season high ... Seattle sends Taijuan Walker to the mound in search for a series sweep Sunday while Toronto will counter with Aaron Sanchez.