After the Seattle Mariners’ manager left, their longest winning streak of the season also vanished.
The Mariners take their second attempt at earning a win for new manager John McLaren when they continue their three-game road series against the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday night.
McLaren became Seattle’s manager after Sunday’s surprise resignation by Mike Hargrove, who said he’d lost passion for the game. The Mariners won Hargrove’s finale, 2-1 over Toronto on Sunday, to extend their season-high winning streak to eight games.
Prior to Monday’s series opener in Kansas City, the Mariners announced McLaren - formerly the bench coach - would be the new manager with no “interim” label attached. However, McLaren was stunned by Hargrove’s decision and said he wasn’t able to sleep Sunday night.
“To be honest with you … it didn’t have the jubilation inside me it should, I don’t think,” McLaren said. “I respect the game a lot and I respect Mike Hargrove a lot. Could there have been a better scenario? Absolutely.”
There was no jubilation for anybody in the visitor’s dugout Monday night, when the Mariners lost 3-2 in 11 innings and saw their win streak snapped. Seattle (45-34) fell 4 1/2 games behind the idle Los Angeles Angels in the AL West.
Center fielder David DeJesus homered, doubled twice and scored the winning run on Emil Brown’s sacrifice fly for the Royals (35-48), who won for the sixth time in eight games to move within two games of the Chicago White Sox for fourth place in the AL Central.
Kansas City had chances to end the game earlier, putting the winning run on third base in both the ninth and 10th innings. Brown and Alex Gordon struck out to end the ninth, though, and Joey Gathright fanned for the third out in the 10th.
“We need to be more aggressive in those situations,” Royals manager Buddy Bell said. “I think we tend to be too particular with our strike zone. And we just have to be more aggressive. The problem with a young team a lot of times is that they don’t quite understand that the pitchers the one that’s in trouble. The hitters not the one in trouble.”
Strong pitching has keyed Kansas City’s hot stretch, as the Royals have not given up any more than four runs during the last eight contests while compiling a 2.10 ERA in that span. The bullpen has been particularly outstanding, with a 1.52 ERA and .149 opponents batting average during the run, including 4 2-3 scoreless innings of work Monday.
Kansas City starter Jorge De La Rosa (5-9, 5.38 ERA) will try for his second straight quality outing. The left-hander yielded 10 hits and walked a batter in six innings Wednesday at Los Angeles, but stranded all the baserunners to earn a 1-0 victory - his first since May 13.
De La Rosa bounced back after losing six consecutive decisions and allowing seven runs in each of his previous two starts.
He lost at Seattle on April 27, when he surrendered five runs and eight hits in 6 1-3 innings.
Seattle left-hander Ryan Feierabend (1-2, 6.46) is also coming off a strong performance. Making just his fourth start of the season Wednesday against Boston, he scattered five hits and two walks over five shutout innings in the Mariners’ 2-1 win in 11 innings.
Feierabend made his second career appearance last Sept. 16 at Kansas City, giving up only one hit and one walk with two strikeouts in four scoreless innings of relief.