Mariners 6, Red Sox 0
SEATTLE (AP)—The Boston Red Sox aren’t actually out of the AL East race. It only looked like it.
No music blaring in the clubhouse late Friday night. The TV wasn’t on. Manny Ramirez and his right knee were in a bulbous wrap. Gabe Kapler had wraps around his lower back and left ankle. Mark Loretta dragged his left leg, wrapped thigh to foot, across the clubhouse.
Woods and two relievers combined on a five-hit shutout in the lowly Mariners’ 6-0 win over Curt Schilling and the sinking Red Sox on Friday.
The Mariners won for the third time in four games since ending a franchise-worst road trip 0-11. Their last two victories have come against fellow 14-game winners Randy Johnson and now Schilling.
“We had a tough one today … It’s not like he has anything special,” Ortiz said of Woods (4-1), the former Los Angeles Angels reliever who has had two strong starts since replacing underachieving Joel Pineiro in Seattle’s rotation.
“Special” hasn’t been required to beat Boston lately.
The Red Sox lost for the seventh time in nine games. They were left thankful that New York lost at the Los Angeles Angels later Friday, so they remained 5 1/2 games behind the Yankees with 34 games to play.
Eight days ago, Boston trailed New York by just 1 1/2 .
“You see what’s going on. We are playing bad,” Schilling said after losing for the third time in four decisions. “You don’t need me … to name names. It’s all of us.”
Schilling (14-6) allowed nine hits and five runs in six innings. He walked none and struck out seven, leaving him one short of 3,000 career strikeouts.
“I felt like it probably would happen,” Schilling said.
But it didn’t happen, like most things Red Sox in the last eight days.
Yet Ortiz refused to acknowledge the season is slipping away.
“We’ve got to keep playing,” Ortiz said, in his empty, silent clubhouse. “We have a lot of games left. It’s not like we are 10 games back.”
Woods allowed three hits and walked three against a Red Sox lineup missing Manny Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis and their combined 47 home runs and 165 RBIs. Woods struck out four.
“The kid was wild, struggling,” Schilling said. “You usually have a lineup that takes advantage of that.”
Woods did stop Ortiz, the major league home run hitter, during the game’s pivotal, fifth-inning at bat.
With Seattle leading 1-0 on a Raul Ibanez RBI double in the first inning, Alex Cora singled and Coco Crisp walked with one out. Loretta then popped out to second base. And Woods got Ortiz to ground out to first base on his second pitch.
Ortiz slapped his hands together in frustration. Woods got a huge cheer from the Safeco Field crowd of 40,817.
“I was going right after him,” Woods said of Ortiz, his final batter. “It was either his night or mine.”
Woods has allowed one earned run in 10 2-3 innings (0.84 ERA) since joining the rotation. He had a 4.44 ERA in 28 relief appearances.
Schilling compounded his own problems in the sixth. After a Jose Lopez single, Ibanez singled behind second base. Shortstop Alex Cora tried to get Ibanez at second, but his throw went wide allowing the runners to move up. Schilling scrambled to pick up the ball and threw off-balance to third. His throw skipped to the box-seat railing, plating Lopez.
A Snelling double and Lopez single off Bryan Corey in the seventh made it 6-0.
With Ramirez still sidelined by the sore knee and Youkilis out with the flu, OF Wily Mo Pena was the cleanup hitter for the first time this season. He went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. He departed for pinch-hitter Eric Hinske in the eighth inning after feeling tightness on the top of his left wrist. Pena said an MRI showed no structural damage, but he didn’t know if he could play Saturday. … Broussard is 9-for-14 (.692) against Boston this season. … Leadoff batter Crisp is 4-for-33 (.121) in his last eight games. … Boston, which leads the majors with 47 errors, has made five errors in four games at Safeco Field this season.