Mike Zunino homered against his former team as the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Seattle Mariners 4-3 Wednesday afternoon in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Randy Arozarena added a two-run triple for the American League East-leading Rays, who avoided not only a sweep of the three-game series but also the seven-game season set against Seattle.
Josh Fleming (9-5) got the victory, going five-plus innings and allowing two runs on five hits. Fleming didn’t walk a batter and struck out six.
Fellow left-hander Ryan Sheriff pitched the ninth to earn his first save of the season.
The Mariners lost for the first time that rookie Logan Gilbert (5-3) took the mound in his past 12 starts. The right-hander struggled with his control and gave up three runs on four hits in five innings, with four walks and six strikeouts.
Seattle opened the scoring in the third. With two outs, Dylan Moore singled and stole second. He scored when J.P. Crawford lined a single to center.
The Rays came right back in the bottom of the inning. Brandon Lowe led off with a double to right and Ji-Man Choi walked. Arozarena hit a liner to center that rookie Jarred Kelenic misplayed, the ball glancing off the bottom of his glove and rolling all the way to the wall to score both runners and leave Arozarena at third. He scored an out later on Joey Wendle’s sacrifice fly to center to make it 3-1.
The Mariners pulled within a run in the sixth as Mitch Haniger led off with a triple to left-center and scored an out later on Kyle Seager’s sacrifice fly to right.
With two outs in the bottom of the inning, Zunino, who was the Mariners’ first-round pick in 2012, lined a solo shot over the center-field wall, his 21st of the season.
The Mariners again pulled within a run in the eighth as Crawford led off with a double down the left-field line and Haniger followed with a single to left. A wild pitch by Matt Wisler on a check-swing third strike to Ty France made it 4-3 as Crawford scored from third. Wisler got Seager and Abraham Toro to fly out to right to leave Haniger stranded at second.
–Field Level Media