ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP)—Pat Borders gave his children a special gift.
Borders, 42, put the Mariners up 3-1 with a solo shot in the seventh in front of his six kids. It was his first since July 16, 2004, and second since the start of the 2000 season.
“I’m sure they don’t remember the last time they saw one live in the big leagues,” said Borders, who has 69 career homers. “It was a great joy letting them see one.”
Borders was called up from Triple-A Tacoma on May 20 after being acquired from the Milwaukee organization. He started his pro career in 1982, with his big league debut coming six years later with Toronto.
“I learned a long time ago that nothing surprises me in anything Pat does,” Seattle manager Mike Hargrove said. “He’s just a little short of amazing in what he brings to the park.”
Sele (4-4) allowed two runs and four hits in 6 2-3 innings for his second straight win, helping the Mariners snap a four-game losing streak. He pitched a four-hitter in his last start, a 5-0 victory over San Diego last Sunday.
“He wasn’t as outstanding this time as he was last time, but the Devil Rays have a good hitting ballclub,” Hargrove said. “He shut then down on this turf and I think that says a lot.”
Sele is 9-1 in 12 career starts against Tampa Bay.
Eddie Guardado pitched the ninth for his 12th save in 13 opportunities for the Mariners, who also stopped a seven-game road skid.
Aubrey Huff homered for Tampa Bay, which was looking for its first five-game winning streak since last June.
“Momentum is how you play on a particular day,” Tampa Bay manager Lou Piniella said. “It’s how you play Monday, how you play Tuesday and how you play Wednesday. It’s not like football where you have all week to prepare. You just go out and play.”
Devil Rays starter Casey Fossum (2-3) gave up three runs and five hits in seven innings.
“Casey is a good pitcher,” Sele said. “We knew we were going to have our hands full. They’ve been playing good ball over there. It was a tight ballgame. It was a great ballgame.”
Huff hit his first homer since April 18 in the fourth to get Tampa Bay within 2-1. He had gone 114 at-bats before connecting for his third homer of the season.
Travis Lee made it 3-2 with an RBI double in the seventh.
Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki went 1-for-4 and struck out twice. He is hitting .320 and has two hits in nine at-bats through the first two games of the series.
Suzuki led the majors with a .372 average last season, but hit just .281 (9-for-32) against Tampa Bay. It’s the only AL opponent he hit less than .300 against in 2004.
Huff had 29 homers last season. … Boone snapped an 0-for-20 slide with a double in the sixth. He also had an 0-for-19 streak in April. … Sexson was hit in the left foot by Fossum’s pitch in the second. … Seattle RHP Jeff Nelson pitched a scoreless inning in his 400th appearance with the Mariners. … Seattle is 2-10 when the opposition starts a left-hander. … A small group of fans calling for Tampa Bay managing general partner Vincent Naimoli to resign staged a walkout from the stands for part of the seventh inning. The Devil Rays have the majors’ lowest payroll.