Jarred Kelenic and Kyle Lewis homered, Yusei Kikuchi pitched six-plus strong innings and the Seattle Mariners got the jump on the host Oakland Athletics with a 4-2 win Monday in the opener of a three-game series.
With the American League West rivals going head-to-head for the first time this season, the Mariners overcame a Mark Canha home run to end a six-game losing streak while handing the A’s a second consecutive defeat.
Kelenic, a 21-year-old who made his major league debut on May 13 and homered the next day, had gone eight games without a second homer before connecting in the fifth inning against Oakland starter Frankie Montas (5-4).
Coupled with an RBI double by Mitch Haniger in the first inning and Lewis’ two-run homer in the third, Kelenic’s 400-plus-foot solo shot to right field put Seattle up 4-1.
Kikuchi (2-3) retained the three-run lead through his outing, allowing one run on four hits. He walked two and struck out three.
The win was the former Japanese star’s first in four May starts and first ever against the A’s in seven career head-to-head matchups.
The A’s got to the Seattle bullpen for a run in the eighth inning and put the potential tying run on base with no outs, but Erik Swanson struck out Chad Pinder, Ramon Laureano and Matt Olson in succession to preserve the 4-2 lead.
Keynan Middleton worked a 1-2-3 ninth with two strikeouts for his third save.
Playing in front of family and friends in a San Francisco Bay Area homecoming, Haniger had two hits. Kelenic scored twice for the Mariners, who had three doubles and two homers among their six hits.
Seth Brown had a pinch-hit RBI double for Oakland, which was out-hit 6-5.
Montas struck out 11 in six innings, but he was charged with all four Mariners runs on six hits and three walks.
–Field Level Media