The Mariners’ Steven Souza Jr. (21) celebrates with teammates after hitting a grand slam during the first inning of a spring training game against the Dodgers on Saturday in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The Mariners’ Steven Souza Jr. (21) celebrates with teammates after hitting a grand slam during the first inning of a spring training game against the Dodgers on Saturday in Peoria, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Cascade grad Souza Jr. hits grand slam in M’s spring win

The veteran outfielder showed off his power in Seattle’s 7-6 victory over the Dodgers.

By Ryan Divish / The Seattle Times

PEORIA, Ariz. — Talented Seattle Mariners pitching prospect Levi Stoudt made his first career MLB spring training start, pitching 2.1 innings and allowing three runs on five hits with two walks and a strikeout in a 7-6 win over the Los Angels Dodgers.

Ranked as the No. 8 prospect in the organization by MLB Pipeline, Stoudt gave up back-to-back singles to Trea Turner and Cody Bellinger to start the game. Chris Taylor gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead with a sac fly to center.

The Mariners answered with a five-run bottom of the first against Dodgers touted pitching prospect Ryan Pepiot. Luis Torrens drove in a run with an infield single and Cascade High School graduate Steven Souza Jr. smashed a grand slam.

Stoudt was able to work out of the inning without further allowing further damage. Given a 5-1 lead, he came back with a 1-2-3 second inning but started to tire in the third. Turner and Bellinger started off the inning with back-to-back singles and a walk to Taylor loaded the bases. Austin Barnes followed with an RBI single back to the mound and Gavin Lux hit a sac fly to center to score another run.

“My plan was just to attack and they got to me a little bit swinging early,” he said. “They were aggressive with some fastballs, but I kind of changed my game plan after that. I tried to throw a few more slider. I’m going to get hit when I’m in the zone a lot. The (pitching) line I’m not too happy about, but there were some weak hits in there and some lucky hits. I felt like I threw the ball well. I’ve got the first one out of the way and I’m looking forward to the next one.”

Fighting for a spot on the MLB roster as the fourth outfielder, Steven Souza Jr. showed he still has some of that power remaining from his big 2017 season when he blasted 30 homers for the Tampa Bay Rays.

The Mariners will be back at Peoria Stadium for another day as they host the Los Angeles Angels. Right-hander Chris Flexen will make his first start of the spring for Seattle with lefty Anthony Misiewicz and right-handers Asher Wojciechowski, Erik Swanson, Wyatt Millers and David Ellingson all scheduled to pitch.

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