Seattle (50-80) at Toronto (54-77)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Toronto, ON
Temp: 72° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Tue Aug 31, 2004
  • TV: FSNW, RSN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Ichiro Suzuki looks to lead the Seattle Mariners to their season-high fifth straight win when they open a three-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Suzuki continued his torrid hitting on Sunday when he homered and scored three times to lead Seattle to a 5-4 win over the Kansas City Royals.

Suzuki, chasing George Sisler’s major league record for hits in a season, finished 3-for-4 and has 209 hits. Sisler got 257 hits for the St. Louis Browns in 1920.

The right fielder leads the AL with a .369 average, and is hitting .457 (53-for-116) in August.

On Sunday, the Mariners trailed 4-3 with two out in the seventh inning, but Suzuki began a rally with a single before Randy Winn, Bret Boone and Raul Ibanez all singled to give Seattle a 5-4 lead.

“We’ve seen him do it quite a few times,” Seattle manager Bob Melvin said. “I talk about him every day and you try to come up with more superlatives.”

The Mariners have won a season high-tying four in a row, and are looking to win five straight for the first time since recording a nine-game winning streak from May 27-June 5, 2003.

“Things are starting to feel good in here now and that’s what we need going into September,” Seattle pitcher Ron Villone said.

The Mariners will be looking to extend their run against a Blue Jays team that has beaten them five straight times since Seattle defeated Toronto in the first meeting between the teams this season.

The Blue Jays also came from behind to win Sunday, scoring five runs in the seventh to beat the New York Yankees 6-4 and end a five-game losing streak.

Down 2-1 in the seventh, the Blue Jays sent nine to the plate. Carlos Delgado led off with a homer, Gabe Gross and Reed Johnson added RBI singles, and Orlando Hudson hit a run-scoring single to Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, whose throw to second sailed into right field for an error that allowed Johnson to score Toronto’s sixth run.

“That was a great win,” Delgado said. “We put a couple hits together and took advantage of a miscue out there. Maybe we can turn around and put a couple more (wins) together.”

Mariners - 4th place, 27 GB, AL West. Blue Jays - 5th place, 27 1/2 GB, AL East.

MARINERS PROBABLE STARTER: Jamie Moyer (6-9, 4.78 ERA). The left-hander pitched 5 1-3 innings Thursday, allowing six runs on six hits and a season-high five walks in losing 7-3 to the Royals. Moyer lost his seventh straight decision and is winless in 12 starts since June 18. He dropped a career-high eight consecutive decisions from April 12, 1991-May 30, 1993 while playing for Texas, St. Louis and Baltimore. Moyer pitched 7 2-3 strong innings to beat the Blue Jays on May 31, improving to 11-7 lifetime against them.

BLUE JAYS PROBABLE STARTER: Josh Towers (9-5, 4.61 ERA). Towers had his three-game winning streak snapped Wednesday when he allowed five runs and nine hits over 3 2-3 innings in an 11-5 loss to the Boston Red Sox. The right-hander had won seven of his prior eight decisions, and he allowed more than two earned runs for just the second time in eight starts. He beat Seattle 12-4 on July 7, allowing four runs and 10 hits over 6 1-3 innings.

OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Mariners - Suzuki, .369 avg., 83 runs and 30 SBs; Boone, 18 HRs and 66 RBIs. Blue Jays - Johnson, .279 avg. and 60 runs; Delgado, 23 HRs and 73 RBIs; Eric Hinske, 10 SBs.

SEASON SERIES: Blue Jays, 5-1.

STREAKS AND NOTES: Mariners - LHP Moyer has allowed a club record-tying 35 homers. Scott Bankhead gave up 35 in 1987 when the Mariners played their home games in the Kingdome. … 2B Boone is batting .274 with seven homers and 30 RBIs in 42 games since the All-Star break after hitting .236 with 11 home runs and 36 RBIs in 75 first-half contests. … LF Raul Ibanez is batting .421 (8-for-19) with three RBIs in his last five games. Blue Jays - 1B Delgado is 22-for-50 (.440) with six doubles and six homers against Moyer. … OF Johnson has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games, batting .357 with two homers and 10 RBIs. … RHP Jason Frasor has converted 13 straight save opportunities.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Mariners - 18-46 on the road; Blue Jays - 32-34 at home.

INJURIES: Mariners - 3B Justin Leone (hand), 15-day DL; LHP Eddie Guardado (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Julio Mateo (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Clint Nageotte (back), 15-day DL; RHP Joel Pineiro (elbow), 15-day DL; RHP Rafael Soriano (elbow), 15-day DL; OF Chris Snelling (wrist), 60-day DL. Blue Jays - LF Frank Catalanotto (groin), 15-day DL; LHP Valerio De Los Santos (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Roy Halladay (shoulder), 15-day DL; C Bobby Estalella (ankle), 60-day DL; C Greg Myers (ankle), 60-day DL.

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Starting Pitchers

J. Moyer Tor vs. J. Towers LAD
7-13 Record 9-9
5.21 ERA 5.11
125 K 51
63 BB 26
1.39 WHIP 1.50