Blue Jays 10, Mariners 0
SEATTLE (AP)—Gregg Zaun is the first to admit his good fortune in homering from both sides of the plate.
Zaun matched career highs with five RBIs in a game and 11 home runs in a season. He drew a walk to start the big burst in the fourth and capped it with his third career slam—and first right-handed home run of the year.
“The right-handed one was complete luck,” Zaun said. “I wasn’t even looking away, I was looking up with my eye over the plate just trying to drive the ball into the outfield and get an RBI. I caught one and hit it on the right spot.”
It was Zaun’s second multi-home run game and first from both sides of the plate.
“It was just icing on top of icing on top of icing,” Zaun said. “It couldn’t get any better for me.”
John Hattig, who last month became the first player from Guam in the major leagues, hit a three-run double for his first career RBIs. Hattig had several family members in attendance.
“They’re my toughest critics,” Hattig said. “I was pretty nervous going there and playing in front of them. I’m not so worried about 40,000, I’m more worried about 15 people.”
“When he has been in, he has done a great job,” Toronto manager John Gibbons said. “It couldn’t have happened in a better place for him.”
Toronto took two of three at Safeco Field and won a season series at Seattle for the first time since May 2001. That’s the same season Ichiro Suzuki won AL MVP and Rookie of the Year during Seattle’s 116-win campaign.
“The key to shutting them down is keeping Ichiro off base,” Gibbons said.
The Mariners were shut out for the 15th time, most in the majors. That ties a club record (1978, 1983, 1990).
Burnett (8-7) allowed six hits in eight innings. He struck out a season-high 11, walked two and hit a batter.
“Here lately, I’ve really found a nice rythym,” he said. “I’ve really found myself. I’ve just been A.J.”
Burnett didn’t allow a batter to reach third base until there were two outs in the seventh.
“I’ve never seen him with the command that he had on his breaking ball today,” said Zaun, who started at catcher for Bengie Molina. “He threw it for strikes when he needed to. He threw it out of the zone when he wanted to. He threw it to arm side. He threw it to the strike side.”
Justin Speier finished the combined shutout.
Cha Seung Baek (3-1) allowed five runs on seven hits in 3 1-3 innings. This was the first time the Mariners lost in Baek’s five starts.
“He just lost his command,” Seattle manager Mike Hargrove said. “When he came out of the game, he told (pitching coach Rafael) Chavez that he had a little tightness in his shoulder. His command has been what has helped him since he got here.”
Zaun’s solo home run came in the second.
Johnson’s bloop single chased Baek and scored Hattig to make it 5-0. Reliever Cesar Jimenez walked Frank Catalanotto and Vernon Wells to load the bases. On a 3-2 count, Jimenez walked Lyle Overbay to force home Johnson.
Two pitches later, Zaun, batting right-handed against the lefty Jimenez, made it 10-0 with a ball that just cleared the right-field wall.
The nine runs in the fourth matched a season-best for the Blue Jays. It was the second time this year Seattle has allowed nine runs.
“The only thing good about today is that it is over,” Hargrove said. “Plain and simple.”.
RHP Travis Chick scattered four hits in three innings and LHP Ryan Feierabend pitched two perfect innings in their major-league debuts for Seattle. The Mariners have had 13 first-time players this season. … Oswaldo Navarro’s pinch-hit single in the eighth for the Mariners was his first major-league hit. … Lind has a six-game hitting streak and had a career-high three hits in his eighth major-league game. … All-Star 2B Jose Lopez was given the day off for Seattle. Willie Bloomquist started in his place and went 1-for-3 with a walk.