Angels 7, Mariners 4 at the Peoria Sports Complex (7 innings)
It was not a fun night for right-hander Chris Flexen, who struggled in his third start of spring training. Flexen pitched three innings, giving up six runs on nine hits with a walk and four strikeouts. He wasn’t able to finish the second inning and was replaced by Taylor Guerrieri, who got the final out. But under the new rules, the Mariners brought Flexen back to pitch in the third inning and he got an out in the fourth inning.
“That’s the nice thing about the new rule that is in play this spring,” manager Scott Servais said. “It’s about starting pitchers getting that pitch count built up. Give him credit for hanging in there, he didn’t have his best stuff tonight or command. He’ll learn from it.”
While Flexen was less than stellar, the Mariners did get solid pitching from their projected top setup man and closer as Kendall Graveman pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing one hit and picking a runner off at first base. Rafael Montero looked dominant, pitching one inning with two strikeouts.
The Angels didn’t have enough pitching available to play nine innings.
Player of the game
Evan White is starting to heat up at the right time. After getting two hits on Tuesday night, he drove in all four of the Mariners’ runs with a towering grand slam to deep left-center. It was his first homer of the spring and the blast had a 106 mph exit velocity. Facing lefty Thomas Pannone, White fouled off a couple fastballs, but didn’t miss on a 3-2 fastball.
“He’s played four days in a row and he’ll get the day off tomorrow. We started to see it come last night. I thought his at-bats were good tonight. He obviously squared that ball up and Evan’s got big time power. It’s just the consistency of getting to his pitch and getting in play. He had some good swings tonight. We’re starting to see the timing and confidence come together.” — Servais on Evan White.
The Mariners travel to Scottsdale for a Thursday evening game with the San Francisco Giants. Right-hander Justin Dunn will get the start for the Mariners with lefty Nick Margevicius and right-handers Erik Swanson, J.T. Chargois and Yohan Ramirez scheduled to pitch. San Francisco will start right-hander Anthony DeSclafani. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. The game will be televised on NBC Bay Area network and for subscribers with MLB TV. A live radio broadcast can be heard on ESPN 710-AM and mariners.com