ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP)—It’s been a while since Seattle won away from home.
“The first three innings, I was not focused actually,” Baek said. “I tried to concentrate. Lucky game.”
The Mariners team record for consecutive road losses is 15, set June 22-July 28, 2004. It was their first road victory since Aug. 2 at Baltimore.
“You just have to get rid of the absolute hollow feeling in the pit of your stomach,” Seattle manager Mike Hargrove said of the triple play. “It takes a couple of innings. Everything had to happen just right for that to be pulled off and it did. It obviously gave them the momentum back, and our guys battled through that and did what we had to do to win the ballgame.”
The Devil Rays threw out two runners trying to advance during a first-inning triple play.
Seattle had Jose Lopez on third and Beltre on first when Raul Ibanez struck out on a 3-2 pitch. Adrian Beltre broke for second on the play, but pulled up short of the base when catcher Dioner Navarro’s throw easily beat him to the base. Shortstop Zobrist caught Navarro’s throw and took a few steps before tagging out Beltre as he headed back toward first.
Zobrist then threw home where Navarro tagged out Lopez on his attempt to score from third.
“His (Navarro’s) throw down to the second was perfect,” Zobrist said. “It led me straight into him where I could take it and just continue running and make the tag. I saw the guy taking off for home, so it’s just snap, snap, just like that.”
Devil Rays starting pitcher J.P. Howell said the play was “like a snowball fight.”
“Threw a strike, and let them do it,” he said. “I just watched the ball fly around.”
According to SABR, it was the first ever 2-6-2 triple play in major league history.
“That was pretty neat,” Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. “Zobrist really made the play happen. They executed it very well. In a practice situation you couldn’t do it any better.”
It was the first triple play at Tropicana Field and the second turned in Devil Rays history. They also accomplished the feat on Sept. 13, 2002 at Toronto.
Seattle has been on the wrong side of a triple play nine times in team history, including twice this season. The other one this year came May 27 against Minnesota.
“I’ve seem them, and that definitely was a weird play,” Ibanez said. “We came back, and the most important thing at the end of the day is whether you win or lose.”
Beltre had RBI singles in the first and third, helping the Mariners take a 3-1 lead. Richie Sexson hit a third-inning, bases-loaded sacrifice fly.
Mike Morse made it 4-1 on a sacrifice fly in the eighth.
Baldelli hit his third lead-off homer of the season in the first and Young had an eighth-inning solo shot that cut the Tampa Bay deficit to 4-2.
After Zobrist’s homer in the ninth, Baldelli hit a game-ending fly to deep center.
“A lot of good things,” Maddon said. “We just got beat tonight.”
Tampa Bay RHP Jae Seo (strained left groin) threw a simulated game and is scheduled to rejoin the rotation Tuesday. “Everything was OK,” Seo said. “No pain. I feel good.” … Seattle CF Ichiro Suzuki singled in the first and third for his 57th multihit game this season and 401st overall. … Suzuki extended his streak of successful stolen base attempts to 31 when stole third in the third. It’s one short of Julio Cruz’s team record. … Devil Rays LF Carl Crawford singled in the first to stop an 0-for-15 slide.