Mariners’ Thin Bullpen Falters In 7-6 Loss To White Sox

Mike Cranston, Associated Press

CHICAGO (AP) — The Seattle Mariners were forced to send a pitcher to the minors to add infield depth with Kyle Seager banged up.

The lack of bullpen options proved costly.

The Mariners turned to Nick Vincent in the ninth, and he allowed Todd Frazier’s line single down the left-field line to give the Chicago White Sox a 7-6 victory Thursday night.

“We’ve used Nick a lot lately, but you know in this situation on the road we try to hold out to close until you get a lead,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “We didn’t have much bullpen depth at that point.”

Adam Eaton led off the ninth with a bloop single off Vincent (3-4) and went to second on Tim Anderson’s sacrifice. Jose Abreu was walked intentionally before Frazier’s liner over third scored Eaton, leading to a pileup of players behind the pitcher’s mound.

David Robertson (4-2) worked around a walk and two incidents of fans running on the field in the ninth that delayed play for several minutes in Chicago’s fourth win in five games.

“The first two guys I was like, ‘Ok. All right. They’ve got it under control,'” Robertson said. “The next guy, I got a little angry there.”

Robinson Cano hit his 29th home run and the Mariners wasted a solid return off the disabled list by James Paxton in their third straight loss. Seattle fell 7 1/2 games behind AL West-leading Texas.

Leonys Martin had a two-run single in a three-run sixth as Seattle built a 6-3 lead off White Sox starter Anthony Ranaudo.

But Anderson, who had three hits, led a seventh-inning rally with an RBI double off struggling Arquimedes Caminero before Frazier’s two-out ground single off Steve Cishek tied it.

Seattle sent right-hander Tony Zych to Triple-A Tacoma before the game and added infielder Mike Freeman with Seager (bruised foot) sitting out a second straight game.

Paxton gave up five singles and three runs in the first, then scattered two hits in four scoreless innings before leaving after 90 pitches in his first start since getting hit on the elbow by a comebacker Aug. 7.

“It was just a little bit of rust,” said Paxton, who added he felt no pain. “I was missing the middle a little bit and they were finding some holes. As it went along I made some better pitches.”

Ketel Marte’s fielding error on J.B. Shuck’s leadoff grounder in the seventh led to three unearned runs for Chicago.

Ranaudo was charged with six runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings in his third third start with the White Sox.

“Against a lineup like that, your mistakes get exposed,” Ranaudo said. “I think that happened, but luckily we’ve got a good team and we’re having some fun right now.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mariners: Servais said Seager is “50-50” to play Friday. “Today’s better than yesterday,” Seager said after the game. “So that’s a good thing.” DH Nelson Cruz hit a sacrifice fly in the first a day after leaving with back spasms.

White Sox: LF Melky Cabrera (illness) sat out. … GM Rick Hahn said CF Austin Jackson (knee surgery) and INF Matt Davidson (broken foot) won’t return this season. … An MRI on 2B Brett Lawrie, out with hamstring, calf and knee issues, came back clean.

UNRULINESS

Two men initially ran on the field, with one removing his shirt. One was tackled on the field, while another jumped back into the stands before he was taken by security. Then before a pitch was thrown, another fan ran on the field and also took off his shirt.

“It was tough,” said Norichika Aoki, whose at-bat was interrupted before he eventually struck out. “Once is fine, but twice that makes it harder.”

LEBLANC CUT

LHP Wade LeBlanc, acquired from Toronto in June, was designated for assignment to make room for Paxton. LeBlanc had a 4.50 ERA in 11 games with Seattle, including eight starts.

“I thought he pitched great,” Servais said. “My fingers are crossed that he doesn’t get claimed, but everybody is looking for pitching.”

With LeBlanc gone, LHP Ariel Miranda will start Saturday.

UP NEXT

A showdown of aces Friday night, as Seattle RHP Felix Hernandez (8-4, 3.26 ERA) faces LHP Chris Sale (15-6, 3.15). Hernandez is 3-0 with a 2.73 ERA and 30 strikeouts in four starts this month.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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