Mariners win 9th straight season opener

SEATTLE — The Seattle Mariners were eager to be home at Safeco Field to start the 2015 season.

Although, it’s not like they need to be there.

For the first time since 2008 the Mariners opened the season at home and, like it’s been the past eight seasons on the road, 2015 brought a victory in game No. 1.

“Opening Day is always going to be special. It’s like when you go back to school for the first day,” said second baseman Robinson Cano before the game. “I’m happy and excited about the season and just can’t wait.”

Since its last home opener seven years ago, Seattle has began the season on the road — even flying to Tokyo in 2012. The Mariners’ streak of nine straight Opening Day wins is tied for the second-longest mark in major league history, trailing just the Boston Beaneaters’ 10-year run from 1887-96.

“Opening Day is special, no matter where you’re playing or whatever the situation is. But to open up here at Safeco Field is going to be a lot of fun,” said third baseman Kyle Seager before Monday’s game. “I’ve opened up in Japan, Anaheim, Oakland, it’s going to be really, really cool to open up here.

“Opening Day, Felix (Hernandez) on the mound, in Seattle, it’s not going to get too much better than that.”

All the excitement can pose distractions, according to Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon.

“Obviously, there’s a lot of excitement,” McClendon said. “Opening Day is a special day for the players, for my staff and for myself as well. I’m glad this day is here. I’ll be glad when it’s over so we can get back to normalcy. But there’s a lot of excitement. The players are pumped up.”

For rookie Tyler Olson, a former Everett AquaSox player taking part in his first Opening Day, the experience was pretty exciting.

“Driving here today, there’s butterflies on my way (to Safeco Field) just thinking about the opportunity and Opening Day,” said Olson, who played at Gonzaga. “It’s just crazy.”

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