<
>

M's Garcia strikes out 12, but gets no-decision

9/12/2002

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- So desperate to try avoiding another
loss, Bret Boone ignored one of the basic rules of baserunning. And
it cost the Seattle Mariners.

After Boone's baserunning blunder kept Seattle from scoring in
the top of the ninth despite two doubles, Todd Greene led off the
bottom of the inning with a homer and the Texas Rangers dealt
another blow to the Mariners playoff chances with a 4-3 win.

Boone led off the Seattle ninth with a double, then got only to
third on Carlos Guillen's hit off the outfield wall. Left fielder
Todd Hollandsworth, who knew Guillen's hit was over his head, held
up his glove like he had a play. Instead of going halfway, Boone
went back to second to tag up, expecting to go to third after the
catch.

"I was for sure he was going to catch it, but in that situation
there's no excuse,'' Boone said. "I know you go halfway. I got
greedy, and I screwed up. I'm not going to say we lost because of
that play, but that play was big and I know better than that.''

Boone was then thrown out coming home on a suicide squeeze bunt
when Jose Offerman struck out against Francisco Cordero (2-0).

After sweeping a three-game series at Kansas City, the Mariners
have lost the first three games to the last-place Rangers. The
series wraps up Thursday, then Seattle goes to Oakland for three
games. The Mariners trail Anaheim by six games in the AL wild-card
race.

"It's getting down to the nitty gritty, and we can't do this,''
Boone said. "The trip started off great, and now we've lost three
in a row. There's no die in this team, but this is not good at this
stage.''

Greene hit a 2-2 pitch off Arthur Rhodes (8-4) down the
left-field line for his seventh homer of the season.

Greene had entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth for
catcher Ivan Rodriguez, who struck out three times to end a 13-game
hitting streak but left because of a bruised right leg. After
pinch-runner Donnie Sadler was caught stealing for third out,
Greene got to lead off the ninth.

The homer was a game-winner because of the deke play by
Hollandsworth on Guillen's hit.

"It's a highly-effective play. I knew he hit the ball well,''
Hollandsworth said. "I knew I couldn't get myself under it. So I
could either make an attempt to make a catch running into the wall,
or go back hard and act like I was going to catch it.''

Alex Rodriguez hit his major league-leading 54th homer and
rookie Hank Blalock also homered for the Rangers, whose major
league record of 27 straight games with a homer had ended in a 3-2
win on Tuesday night.

The scheduled moment of silence in remembrance of the victims of
the terrorist attacks a year earlier was delayed momentarily
because of an argument.

Just at 9:11 p.m., when the game was supposed to stop,
Hollandsworth hit a grounder to Boone at second. Carl Everett,
running from first, slid well short of the bag to try to avoid
Boone's tag but was ruled out by umpire Larry Young.

As Everett continued to argue, Rangers manager Jerry Narron came
out on the field. Seattle manager Lou Piniella then argued that
Hollandsworth should have been out because of Everett's
interference.

The first two Texas homers came off Freddy Garcia, who matched a
career high with 12 strikeouts in his seven innings. Garcia walked
just one and allowed three runs and six hits.

Rookie Colby Lewis, the Rangers' first pick in the June 1999
draft, pitched into eighth in his first start and left with a 3-1
lead after walking Mike Cameron to start the eighth.

"Colby was outstanding, it's a shame that we couldn't get him a
win,'' Rangers manager Jerry Narron said. "When you see that in
someone's first start, you know he is going to be a good pitcher.''

Lewis held the held the Mariners scoreless until Ruben Sierra's
solo homer with two outs in the seventh. After he left, reliever
Danny Kolb gave up an RBI double to Ichiro Suzuki and the
game-tying RBI single to Edgar Martinez.

Garcia got the first sevens with strikeouts, but fell behind 2-0
during that same stretch.

After Rodriguez drew a two-out walk and stole second base in the
first, Rafael Palmeiro drove him home with a single to right.
Blalock's second homer of the season came in the second and
Rodriguez homered in the sixth.

Game notes
Ivan Rodriguez was hurt when trying to block a wild pitch
in the top of the eighth. He is day-to-day. ... Police officers and
firefighters from 30 cities and 10 counties were recognized during
pregame activities remembering Sept. 11, 2001. ... Garcia, who also
had 12 strikeouts vs. Detroit on Aug. 24, 1999, is 4-5 with a 5.95
ERA in his 12 starts since pitching in the All-Star game. ...
Sierra, the former Ranger, is 13-for-32 (.406) with eight RBI at
The Ballpark in Arlington this season.