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Oakland Athletics vs. Seattle Mariners Series Recap: Bullpen Struggles Highlight First Weekend

The Oakland Athletics wrapped up their season-opening three game series with the Seattle Mariners, winning the series finale as they opened the season 1-2 (game-by-game results below). The A's bullpen struggled in the first two games and will look to develop some level of consistency in the coming days and weeks. Craig Breslow struggled as much as anybody, but considering he had a delayed start to the spring due to injury, he will hopefully bounce back sooner rather than later.

A's Pitcher of the Series: Gio Gonzalez - Given the way the A's bullpen performed the first two games, it's easy to go with Gonzalez as the best pitcher this series. Brett Anderson had a solid performance on Saturday, but unlike Gonzalez, he couldn't quite get out of a key late inning jam as he gave up a tying run in the sixth. Gonzalez, on the other hand, managed to work his way out of a two on, no out jam in the seventh in the series finale.

A's Batter of the Series: Josh Willingham - Initially I was thinking of going with Coco Crisp, but Willingham was the one relatively consistent bat through the series. In the first two games he drove in three of the four runs and scored the fourth run. In the series finale Willingham scored two of the runs. It's only three games, but Willingham is off to a very solid start as a member of the Athletics.

Notable Number: 7 - Number of errors by the A's defense, which leads the league after this opening series. While the A's have great starting pitching, part of that expectation is due to a solid starting nine on the field supporting that pitching. A's fans are hoping this weekend's fielding miscues were just early season yips.

Upcoming Schedule: The A's started the season with this short homestand and now head on the road for a nine game road trip. Starting Tuesday they'll face the Toronto Blue Jays, Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox. In 2010, the A's were 3-4 against the Blue Jays, 3-6 against the Twins, and 5-4 against the White Sox.

Series Results
Friday: Mariners 6 - A's 2
WP:
Felix Hernandez (1-0)
LP: Craig Breslow (0-1)

Saturday: Mariners 5 - A's 2
WP:
Chris Ray (1-0)
LP: Brian Fuentes (0-1)
Sv: Brandon League (1)

Sunday: A's 7 - Mariners 1
WP:
Gio Gonzalez (1-0)
LP: Doug Fister (0-1)