Postgame notes and quotes from the Mariners home opener

Joe Saunders’ second start as a Mariners went a lot better than his first, and perhaps the setting had something to do with it. By pitching 6.1 shutout innings in Seattle’s 3-0 victory over Houston, Saunders improved to 7-0 with a 1.91 ERA in 10 starts at Safeco Field.

“I don’t know,” Saunders said, “From day one I said I’m comfortable here. I like this place. There’s just something about this place that I like. I can’t really explain it… This place has been nice to me. Hopefully it keeps going.”

Of course Saunders needed some run support, which he got from a pair of Kendrys Morales RBI hits, and he also got one incredible defensive play from centerfielder Franklin Gutierrez, who made a diving catch in the gap to rob Ronny Cedeno of extra bases in the third.

“I think the play of the game, obviously, was Guti,” Saunders said. “That kept the momentum on our side. Defense was awesome, got some clutch hits from Kendrys too, so it was a good team effort.”

Mariners manager Eric Wedge was excited to see Saunders bounce back from last week’s loss, and was equally encouraged to see his team manufacture runs with small ball when a single followed by pair of bunts led to Seattle’s third run.

“That’s good to see,” Wedge said. “As I’ve said so many times, once these guys settle in, I think we’ll be doing it from top to bottom in different fashion, but that’s a good way. We don’t want to be a one-dimensional club, and I don’t believe we will be. There were some things that happened tonight that were indicative of that, and I think we’ll continue to see that.”

A few notes from the game…

The win improved Seattle to 22-15 in home openers, and it snapped a three-game losing streak in home openers. It was also the Mariners’ third shutout in home opener (2003, 2007).

Kendrys Morales has hit safely in four straight games, and three of those were multi-hit games.

Monday was the first hitless game of the season for Michael Morse.

More in Sports

Everett Memorial Stadium’s baseball field converted to turf

The Mariners, Everett School District and others had to sign off on switch to an artificial surface.

Pair of UW starters to miss remainder of season

Washington’s Trey Adams and Jordan Miller are out for the year with leg injuries.

Seahawks’ Bennett to join NFL’s meeting on social change

Tuesday’s meeting will involve league owners, union leaders and a handful of players.

Stanwood’s Phillips commits to wrestle at North Carolina

The 2-time state champion and 4-time national champion competed at the Cadet Worlds last summer.

Yankees beat Houston 8-1 ALCS Game 3

Judge, Frazier homer as New York thumps Astros

Cubs’ Maddon bristles at criticism of bullpen management

Chicago enters Game 3 down 2-0 to Dodgers

Q&A with Edmonds-Woodway’s Nick Berni

The Warriors’ top tennis player is hoping for a return to the 3A state tournament.

POLL: Which loss was worse, UW Huskies or WSU Cougars?

Both Washington and Washington State suffered inexplicable upset football defeats over the weekend.

Stanwood girls soccer playing with confidence

The Stanwood girls soccer team is enjoying another fine season. The Spartans… Continue reading

Most Read