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Millwood shows strong finishing kick

The SportsXchange

The 2012 season has been better for Seattle Mariners veteran Kevin Millwood than his record -- 6-12 with a 4.25 ERA -- might suggest.

He's been part of a combined no-hitter, and he has 14 quality starts among his 28 starts.

However, given that the Mariners have a crop of pitchers rated among the best in baseball, the 37-year-old right-hander, who will be a free agent at season's end, might not find room in the Seattle rotation next spring.

A good finish would help, and for his first two starts of September, Millwood has been as effective as he's been all year.

In back-to-back starts against the Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays, he's picked up wins Nos. 5 and 6, giving up just three runs in 11 innings.

He could have gone further against the Blue Jays on Wednesday, be he was lifted after five innings because he'd come up tightness in his shoulder. Manager Eric Wedge said he didn't want to push Millwood any further than that, and Wedge couldn't say if Millwood would be making his next start on schedule.

"He gritted through that last inning, but I just didn't feel right pushing him back out there," Wedge said after the Mariners' 3-2 win. "He's a warrior, always has been. I was just so thrilled we were able to get him that win."

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