Posted April 18, 2013 on AP on Fox
The moment Dustin Ackley's line drive left the bat, Justin Smoak knew he was going to get waved home by third base coach Jeff Datz. After nearly 4 1/2 hours of baseball and with Seattle running out of players, there really wasn't another choice. ''I knew off the bat I was trying to score. They had to make a perfect relay throw to get me. He was up the line there and I really had nowhere to go. Had to do what I had to do,'' Smoak said. Detroit catcher Brayan Pena held onto Prince Fielder's relay throw and absorbed a collision with Smoak at home plate for the final out, and the Tigers outlasted the Mariners 2-1 in 14 innings Wednesday night. Smoak singled with one out off Joaquin Benoit, and with two outs Ackley doubled into the right-field corner. Datz didn't hesitate in waving Smoak around with the potential tying run. Torii Hunter started the relay from the outfield, and Fielder's throw was up the third base line a bit. Pena, however, caught it in plenty of time and held onto the ball during the collision. Lying face down in the dirt, Pena held up the ball in his bare hand to show plate umpire Bob Davidson and shook his fist in triumph before teammates helped him up. Because of where Pena caught the relay, there were no options for Smoak other than trying to bull his way through the catcher. ''Just like I did, lower my shoulder and hope for the best,'' Smoak said. ''I hope he is all right, but that's part of the game.'' Pena was more than all right, after getting the go-ahead RBI in the top of the 14th and then making the highlight play in the bottom of the inning. ''It was one of those things that, you know, I just need to hold this ball. Take the hit, absorb the hit,'' Pena said. ''My main goal was to hold onto the baseball. It doesn't matter where your body is going to go. Just hold onto the baseball.'' Detroit took the lead in the top of the 14th when Pena's bases-loaded groundout scored pinch-runner Don Kelly. The conclusion came long after starters Felix Hernandez and Max Scherzer pitched gems in a game that included a whopping 40 strikeouts. Drew Smyly (1-0), the seventh of eight Tigers pitchers, worked the 13th inning for the victory. Benoit earned his first save of the season. Charlie Furbush (0-1) took the loss. According to the Mariners, it was the second time in major league history that both teams had more than 18 strikeouts. The only other time was June 16, 2001, when the Giants and Padres both struck out 20 times in a 15-inning game. Detroit batters tied the team record for most strikeouts in a game with 21 - five by Fielder, who was hitless in six at-bats. ''It was a great game. Terrific pitching by both sides,'' Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. Seattle will lament its missed chances in the later innings when it could have avoided the extra baseball. The Mariners had runners in scoring position in the eighth, ninth and 10th and each time failed to come through with a clutch hit. The Mariners finished 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position. Their lone run came in the seventh when Michael Morse led off with a double and Raul Ibanez followed with a single to tie it at 1. Hernandez and Scherzer almost became afterthoughts thanks to the long night, but their performances will be tough to top the rest of the season. Both pitchers finished with 12 strikeouts. Each threw eight strong innings. And neither could get help from their respective offenses to get the victory. According to the Mariners, with information from the Elias Sports Bureau, the performance by Scherzer and Hernandez was the first time two starters had at least 12 strikeouts and allowed no more than one earned run since Randy Johnson and Mark Langston hooked up in 1992. How good were Scherzer and Hernandez? Scherzer threw 105 pitches with 75 strikes; Hernandez threw 106 with 76 strikes. Hernandez retired 12 of his first 13 batters, including six strikeouts. The only one to reach was Miguel Cabrera, who dumped a single in front of Franklin Gutierrez in right-center with two outs in the first. The 12 strikeouts for Hernandez were the most since his perfect game against Tampa Bay last August when he also struck out 12. It was Hernandez's ninth career start with 12 or more strikeouts. He was replaced to start the ninth by closer Tom Wilhelmsen. Hernandez gave up four hits and didn't walk a batter. ''It was a great game. Both sides,'' Hernandez said. ''Scherzer was pretty good, too. He was changing speeds, he was throwing breaking balls. I was just trying to match it up. I was trying to be aggressive. Against a team like that you have to be in attack mode.'' NOTES: It was the first time since Safeco Field opened in July 1999 that both starting pitchers had 10 or more strikeouts. ... RHP Jose Valverde pitched for the Tigers' extended spring training squad in Florida vs. the Braves. He tossed a scoreless inning with one strikeout. ... At Triple-A Tacoma, Carlos Truinfel needed just five innings to hit for the cycle. He was the first Tacoma player to hit for the cycle since Ibanez in 1997.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Mariners catcher Kelly Shoppach makes laughable throw to second base (GIF)

Seattle Mariners catcher Kelly Shoppach made what may be one of the worst throws ever by a major league catcher during Tuesday night's game at Safeco Field against the Detroit Tigers. It happened in the ninth inning as Tigers pinch runner Andy Dirks was stealing second base. Dirks made it easily as Shoppach somehow threw the ball straight down into the ground less than five...

Tired Bullpen: Mariners recall RHP Hector Noesi

Tired Bullpen: Mariners recall RHP Hector Noesi After their tough loss 14 inning game last night the M's need arms. The Mariners recalled pitcher Hector Noesi from Triple-A Tacoma on Thursday, and optioned Bobby LaFromboise to the Rainiers. Noesi struggled this spring and was one of the first cuts in camp. He allowed just five hits in 11 shutout innings in two starts at...

Seattle Mariners earn four game series split vs. Rangers

After a surprising series loss to the Houston Astros in which Seattle Mariner pitching surrendered 24 runs in the two losses, the Mariners bounced back to earn a split with the Texas Rangers in a four game set.  Mariner fans were treated to more of the pitching they were used to as the Mariners limited Texas to 11 runs in four games.  Seattle will now look to end their ten game...

Tigers vs. Mariners Tuesday recap

Tigers take down the M's 6-2 Miguel Cabrera had three hits and drove in the first four runs to lead Detroit to its third straight road victory. Post game Eric Wedge said he was impressed with Aaron Harang, who had been traded from the Dodgers to the Rockies and on to the Mariners without making a regular-season start prior to Tuesday. Former M's pitcher Doug Fister...

Brayan Pena Endures Nasty Home Plate Collision With Justin Smoak in Final Play of 14-Inning Game (Video)

Brayan Pena knocked in the winning run for Detroit in the top of the 14th inning Wednesday night only to get knocked over in the bottom of the frame. With two outs, Dustin Ackley smacked a double into right field, and Justin Smoak didn’t hesitate to attempt to score the potential tying run from first. But Prince Fielder’s relay throw to Pena was on the money, and the 5-foot...

Seattle Mariners avoid three game sweep vs. Tigers

In a nutshell, the ten game home stand to open the season didn’t leave the Mariners with as many wins as they probably wished.  The Mariners dropped their third three-game series of the 2103 season, losing two out of three to the Detroit Tigers.  Seattle finishes the home stand 4-6, and they stand at 7-10 on the season as they head into Texas for three against the Rangers and...

Mariners vs. Rangers Friday Game 1 Preview

On the road again: Mariners vs. Rangers Game 1 Preview Mariners LH Joe Saunders (1-1, 2.08 ERA) vs. Rangers RH Yu Darvish (2-1, 2.75) Saunders is 3-7 with a 5.79 ERA in 12 career starts against Texas. Darvish is 10-2 with a 3.88 ERA in 14 starts at home last season. Five days after they gained a split of a four-game series at Safeco Field, the Texas Rangers return home to...

Perfect Example Of How To Not Throw Out a Runner Stealing Second

Tigers pinch runner Andy Dirks attempted to steal second base on Tuesday night at Safeco during the ninth inning of the Mariners and Tigers game. The attempt was normal, but the best part was the throw that Mariners catcher Kelly Shoppach completely blew. Check out the attempt and try not to laugh. [Holdout Sports, House of the Bluebird] Article found on: Next Impulse Sports

Game 2013.16: Tigers at Angels

The Detroit Tigers (9-6) finish their one and only West Coast road trip, a successful one so far, by paying a visit to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (4-10) for a three-game series. Friday, April 19, 10:05 ET start Saturday, April 20, 3:05 ET start Sunday, April 21, 3:35 ET start Today’s starters: Current Angels have hit RHP Sanchez only slightly better than his overall average...

The best and worst of Week 2

Tigers slugger Prince Fielder is all smiles after the week he had. The last two seasons Prince Fielder has hit behind a teammate who went on to win the Most Valuable Player award; last season it was the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera, and in 2011 it was the Brewers’ Ryan Braun. There are many who believe that this could finally be the year that Fielder wins his first MVP award. He...
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!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.