Angels 4, Mariners 3

Associated Press  |  Last updated September 27, 2012
Torii Hunter's RBI singles tied it in the seventh inning and ended it in the ninth, and the Los Angeles Angels rallied to keep pace in the AL wild-card race with their fifth consecutive victory, 4-3 over the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday night. Erick Aybar had an early two-run double before Hunter ended it for the Angels (86-69), who remained two games behind Oakland (88-67) after the other three teams in the AL wild-card race all won earlier in the day. Pinch hitter Maicer Izturis opened the ninth with a single off Stephen Pryor (3-1) and advanced to third on a wild pitch and Peter Bourjos' bunt. Seattle walked rookie Mike Trout to face Hunter, who coolly stroked a single to center. Hunter, the 37-year-old outfielder who will be a free agent this winter, has been spectacular down the stretch of his fifth season with the Angels, contributing 23 RBIs in 23 games. Baltimore (89-67) is a half-game ahead of the Athletics atop the wild-card race, while Tampa Bay (85-70) has won seven straight to stay one game behind the Angels. Justin Smoak hit his third homer in two games for the Mariners, who have lost seven of nine. Brendan Ryan and Franklin Gutierrez drove in early runs, but Seattle couldn't capitalize on a solid start by Felix Hernandez, who struck out nine. Ernesto Frieri (4-2) pitched the ninth for the Angels, whose bullpen didn't allow a hit in 3 1-3 innings after C.J. Wilson's departure. With 16 wins in 23 games in September, Los Angeles is 17 games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 2009 season, their last playoff year. Hernandez pitched six innings of five-hit ball, leaving with a lead before the Angels' seventh-inning rally against reliever Josh Kinney. Hernandez, who is slated to face the Angels again in Seattle next week, is 0-2 in four starts against Los Angeles this season. Wilson, the Angels' $77.5 million left-hander, had his second straight rocky start in a nightmarish second half of the season. After failing to get out of the third inning against Texas last week, he gave up five hits, three walks and several hard-hit outs to the Mariners after retiring his first six batters on 22 pitches, picking up his 800th career strikeout along the way. After Aybar staked the Angels to a two-run lead in the second inning, they loaded the bases before Hunter grounded out on the first pitch he saw. Aybar also reached third base in the fourth inning, but Trout's harmless flyout ended it. Seattle evened it in the third after Wilson walked Casper Wells and Chone Figgins. Smoak put the Mariners ahead in the fourth with a long drive, his team-leading 19th of the season. Hernandez retired nine straight after Aybar's leadoff single in the fourth, but threw 103 pitches before Kinney replaced him to start the seventh. Chris Iannetta singled with one out, and pinch-runner Bourjos scored from second when Hunter fouled off several pitches before dropping a short single into the outfield. NOTES: Izturis was 0 for 20 as a pinch-hitter this season before connecting in the ninth. ... The Angels surpassed 3 million fans for the season Wednesday night, reaching the mark for the 10th consecutive year since their only World Series championship. ... Dan Haren starts the Angels' regular-season home finale on Wednesday afternoon against Seattle's Hisashi Iwakuma. ... Chris Iannetta drew a 12-pitch walk from Hernandez in the second inning, fouling off five straight pitches with two strikes. ... RHP Jerome Williams pitched well in relief of Wilson for the second straight start, inducing an inning-ending double play on his first pitch and retiring all four batters he faced.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

DeMar DeRozan: It will be ‘pretty tough’ for me to leave Raptors

Super Bowl referee says Cotchery play could have been a catch

The NBA is one step closer to putting ads on jerseys

Archie Manning defends Cam Newton over press conference

Dwight Howard: ‘I have not asked the Rockets to trade me’

Nazem Kadri fined $5,000 for throat-slashing gesture

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Hassan Whiteside suspended one game for elbowing Boban Marjanovic

Hornets’ Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has torn labrum

Report: Antonio Tarver suspended six months, fined $50,000 for positive test

Texans owner wants team to draft a top quarterback

Subban undergoes larynx surgery, out at least eight weeks

Report: Raiders staying in Oakland for 2016 season

Chris Harris: Von Miller should get paid more than JJ Watt

4 likeliest Dwight Howard trade scenarios

On Kobe Bryant and taking greatness for granted

Penn State the latest to offer generic football jerseys for sale

Gary Bettman praises the NHL’s new website and app (which are currently awful)

Bucks need to choose between wins, development

NBA to weigh adding advertisements to jerseys

ESPN, Stephen A. Smith and Little League International sued by parents of Jackie Robinson West

Kobe Bryant shoots down notion he wants All-Star MVP record

Justin Tuck will sign one-day contract to retire with Giants

Ronda Rousey returns to training

Von Miller likely to get franchise tag from Broncos

Barry J. Sanders transferring to Oklahoma State

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

On Kobe Bryant and taking greatness for granted

Bucks need to choose between wins, development

Fantasy booking WrestleMania 32

Unrestricted free agents each team must consider re-signing

QUIZ: Name the winners of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker