Mariners 7, Phillies 2

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PHILADELPHIA (AP)—John Olerud insists it’s no secret why the Seattle Mariners have the best record in major league baseball.

Olerud doubled twice and drove in four runs to back Gil Meche, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-2 Wednesday night for their eighth straight win.

Ichiro Suzuki went 4-for-5 and Bret Boone extended his hitting streak to 10 games for the Mariners, who scored three of their runs on sacrifice flies.

“I thought offensively we executed about as well as you could hope to,” said Olerud after Seattle won its team-record 12th straight road game.

Overall, the Mariners are on their longest winning streak since taking 10 straight from April 8-17 last year.

“Earlier in the year we weren’t getting the job done,” Olerud said. “We’d leave a lot of guys on third base with less than two out. Tonight, I think we executed as well as we have all year as far as moving runners over when we’d get a runner on second with less than two out. Then we’d get him in with a sacrifice fly or a base hit.”

Seattle manager Bob Melvin appreciates Olerud’s numerous contributions to a veteran-laden team.

“John is just a quiet warrior who does everything,” Melvin explained. “If we have to get a guy over, he can do that. He hits the ball the other way. He stays up the middle against left-handed pitching, and he’s probably the best defensive first baseman that I’ve been around.”

Meche (8-2) allowed two runs, five hits and four walks in six innings. Four relievers held the Phillies hitless over the last three innings.

“That was a tough night,” said Meche. “The bad (weather) conditions that we had tonight and the mound was a little bit higher than I’m used to. But I got through six innings. I struggled a little bit the whole time but it was another start I went six innings and kept the team in the game.”

Vicente Padilla (4-7) gave up all seven runs and 10 hits in six-plus innings.

Asked if the Phillies’ poor run support affected his pitching, Padilla said, “It’s no excuse. I still have to hold the other team. Tonight I didn’t make my pitches.”

Jim Thome hit his 13th home run for the Phillies, who scored their other run on a single by Bobby Abreu.

“Guys are going to have to start producing, it’s not happening” Phillies manager Larry Bowa said. “I hope a lot of them are embarrassed right now.”

The start of the game was delayed 48 minutes, and an intermittent drizzle continued throughout the night.

Olerud hit a sacrifice fly in the first, but Abreu’s single tied the score in the bottom half.

Padilla struck out the side in the second but allowed a run on Mark McLemore’s double, Ben Davis’ single and Mike Lieberthal’s passed ball. Davis’ sacrifice fly put Seattle ahead 3-1 in the fourth, but Thome homered on Meche’s first pitch of the fifth.

Randy Winn hit a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Terry Adams relieved in the seventh and allowed an RBI double to Olerud, who added a two run double in theninth off Dan Plesac.

Notes

Seattle 3B Jeff Cirillo missed the game and is day-to-day with a bruised right knee, bruised left knee, sore ankle and sore neck. He crashed into a rail along the left-field seats chasing a foul ball in Tuesday’s game. … McLemore, who played SS Tuesday, started in Cirillo’s place. … SS Jimmy Rollins is the only player to appear in every Phillies game this season. …Meche went 0-for-2 in his first major league at-bats.

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