Seattle, WA (Sports Network) – Casper Wells’ first home run as a Mariner proved to be the difference in Seattle’s 4-2 win over the Oakland Athletics. Wells’ two-run shot in the sixth inning made it 4-0 and helped Seattle win consecutive games for the first time since a three-game streak from July 3-5.
“We’ve thrown him right in there, he’s played every day so far,” Mariners manager Eric Wedge said of Wells. “I don’t anticipate him playing every single day, but we’re going to try and get him a good amount of playing time.”
Felix Hernandez (10-9) was credited with the win after holding the A’s to two runs on five hits over 6 1/3 innings. Rich Harden (2-2), who was speculated to be heading to Boston near the trade deadline, surrendered four runs on five hits in 5 2/3 innings for Oakland, which had won five of seven before losing the first two meetings of this three-game set.
“He made two mistakes and it cost him four runs, the change-up on the last pitch he threw and the ball that Carp hit to left-center field, other than that, he was terrific again,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said of Harden.
The only runs the A’s managed came on Scott Sizemore’s home run to straightaway center in the seventh. Eric Sogard singled ahead of the blast. Oakland loaded the bases with one out in the eighth, but Jeff Gray struck out Kurt Suzuki and Sogard to keep the Mariners in front. Suzuki swung at strike three before it hit him on his right shoulder. Brandon League hurled a 1-2-3 ninth to record his 25th save.
Mike Carp one-hopped the wall in left to plate Brendan Ryan and Dustin Ackley in the first inning.
Hernandez finished with nine strikeouts and reached double digits in wins for the fifth time in his career…Ackley posted his fifth triple in the third inning…Hideki Matsui had three of Oakland’s seven hits…Wells was acquired in a trade with Detroit over the weekend.