Cleveland (42-46) at Seattle (33-54)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Seattle, WA
Temp: 66° F
  • Game info: 10:05 pm EDT Fri Jul 16, 2004
  • TV: FSOH, FSNW
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Seattle’s lineup has undergone some major changes over the last week.

After snapping its longest losing streak in over a decade, the Mariners continue their adjustment to a revamped roster as they resume a four-game series with the Cleveland Indians at Safeco Field.

The Mariners beat the Indians 2-1 on Thursday, snapping a nine-game losing streak—their longest slide since dropping a franchise-record 14 straight in Sept. 1992. Each of the nine losses came on the road.

The win came just hours after the Mariners announced they were moving veteran first baseman John Olerud off their roster. Olerud has a no-trade clause in his contract and turned down a trade to the San Francisco Giants less than two weeks ago.

“I’m going to look at my options and see what teams would be interested,” he said. “When I first had a trade come up and offered to me, the thought was, ‘How would this be better for my family and that sort of thing?’ Because this is home for me. Now the option of staying home isn’t an option.”

The 35-year-old Olerud, a career .295 hitter, has struggled the last two seasons. He hit .269 last season, an 11-year low, and was batting just .245 this season. Veteran Scott Spiezio will move from third base to first so that 27-year-old Justin Leone can play third.

Leone, who had 21 homers in 68 games at Triple-A Tacoma, hit his first major league homer in Thursday’s win.

Unless a deal is struck, Olerud will be released or sent to the minors within 10 days. The Mariners will still owe him $7.7 million.

“There’s going to be some pain to move on, obviously,” manager Bob Melvin said.

Seattle also designated catcher Pat Borders for assignment, called up infielder Bucky Jacobsen from Triple-A Tacoma and activated catcher Miguel Olivo from the disabled list before Thursday’s game.

The Mariners released shortstop Rich Aurilia on Saturday and traded pitcher Freddy Garcia and catcher Ben Davis less than two weeks ago.

“A lot of these things that we do during the season are to find out where we go next year,” Melvin said. “You’re not able to do it if you just call some guys up in September and see how they do in September.”

Jody Gerut homered and Travis Hafner had two hits Thursday for the Indians, who have lost seven of their last 10.

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