Seattle, WA (Sports Network) – Franklin Gutierrez belted the go-ahead home run in the fifth inning, helping the Seattle Mariners beat the Texas Rangers, 3-2, and snap their seven-game losing streak.
Gutierrez finished with two RBI for the Mariners, who scored for the first time since Friday after being shut out the past two games. Chone Figgins finished with three hits, while Ichiro Suzuki and Casey Kotchman each had two in the win.
Jason Vargas (7-5) earned his first win since June 22 after allowing two runs on three hits and three walks while fanning two in six innings. David Aardsma earned his 19th save of the season.
Bengie Molina and Michael Young each hit a sacrifice fly for the Rangers, who have scored only five runs over the last three games (1-2). Colby Lewis (9-8) yielded nine hits and three runs while striking out nine in six frames to receive the loss.
After the Mariners fought off two deficits and tied the game in the fourth, Gutierrez put Seattle ahead for the first time with a wall-scraping solo home run with one out in the fifth.
Vargas finished his outing with a perfect sixth, and Jamey Wright retired the first two Texas hitters in the seventh before Mitch Moreland doubled. Wright recovered to induce a harmless fly out from David Murphy to end the threat.
Brandon League came on to start the eighth for Seattle and promptly walked Elvis Andrus and Young to begin the inning. League got out of it, though, getting Josh Hamilton to ground into a fielder’s choice before inducing an inning-ending double play groundout from Nelson Cruz.
Aardsma retired Texas in order in the ninth to polish off the win.
The Rangers scored single runs in both the third and fourth, but each time Seattle had an answer.
Julio Borbon singled to begin the third and moved to third base on an Andrus base hit. Young followed with a sacrifice fly for a 1-0 lead.
Three consecutive singles by Suzuki, Figgins and Kotchman opened the home third and loaded the bases. After Russell Branyan struck out, Gutierrez’s safety squeeze was good enough to plate Suzuki and tie the game.
Cruz began the top of the fourth with a walk, and Jorge Cantu followed with a single to left. Cristian Guzman bunted the runners ahead one base and Molina’s sacrifice fly put the Rangers back ahead.
Jack Wilson singled with two down in the fourth, and Suzuki’s base hit put runners on the corners. Lewis’ wild pitch allowed Wilson to score and square the game.
The Rangers still lead the season series, 8-3…Rangers designated hitter Vladimir Guerrero, who entered the contest with a six-game RBI streak, grounded out to end the game. He did not start…The Mariners snapped an eight-game losing streak in series openers…Seattle has scored just 17 runs in its last eight games.