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Angels fail to clinch playoff spot with loss

9/22/2002

SEATTLE (AP) -- The Anaheim Angels aren't worried one bit.

The Seattle Mariners prevented Anaheim from clinching a playoff
spot as Ryan Franklin outpitched Angels ace Jarrod Washburn in a
3-2 victory Sunday.

"We are very disappointed in our performance the last two days,
but it's not life or death,'' Washburn said. "We know it just
takes one more win. We will go to Texas, clear our minds and get
back to business.''

Anaheim (96-60) fell three games behind first-place Oakland in
the AL West with six to play. Seattle (90-66) and Boston (89-66)
are still mathematically alive for the wild card.

Angels manager Mike Scioscia doesn't think his team is pressing.

"Everyone knows we're close,'' he said. "I think we are going
about our business the same way. Everyone is focused.''

Ichiro Suzuki got his 200th hit of the season for Seattle.
Franklin (7-4), who moved into the rotation Aug. 11, beat Anaheim
for the first time in three career starts. He gave up two runs on
six hits in 71/3 innings.

Franklin said the Mariners' sole goal was to ruin the Angels'
day.

"I kind of thought last night and today when I got to the
ballpark that I definitely didn't want no one kind of celebrating
and clinching it on our home field,'' he said.

Washburn (18-6), who had won his three previous decisions,
allowed three runs on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings. He walked three
and struck out four.

The Angels, who are off Monday, will try to secure their first
trip to the postseason since 1986 on Tuesday night in Texas.

The defending AL West champion Mariners begin a three-game
series at home Tuesday night against Oakland. Boston is at
Baltimore on Monday night.

Seattle manager Lou Piniella did not sound too optimistic about
his team's chances of catching Anaheim in the final week of the
season.

"You know we've got a day off tomorrow and we've got six games
to go to finish up our season,'' Piniella said. "Like I said a
week or 10 days ago, let's finish up as strong as we can and let it
go at that.''

The Mariners made it 3-1 in the seventh and chased Washburn when
Suzuki got his 200th hit and rookie Willie Bloomquist got his
fourth hit of the game.

Dan Wilson led off the inning with a single and Jeff Cirillo
sacrificed him to second. Suzuki sent Wilson to third with a
single, and Wilson scored on Bloomquist's single.

Bloomquist loved showing Piniella he could produce under
pressure.

"Any time you can persuade the manager you can play a little
bit, it's always a good thing,'' he said. "But next year is next
year. I'm thinking more along the lines of tomorrow right now.''

The Angels cut Seattle's lead to 3-2 in the eighth on Scott
Spiezio's RBI single.

Jeff Nelson struck out Troy Glaus to end the inning with two on,
then finished for his second save. Closer Kazuhiro Sasaki was not
available for the Mariners after his one-inning, 35-pitch save
Saturday.

"We don't have that much of a hope, but that last candle on our
mantel hasn't been blown out yet,'' Nelson said.

Bloomquist gave the Mariners a 2-1 lead in the sixth when he
doubled, went to third on Washburn's wild pitch and scored on John
Olerud's sacrifice fly -- his 100th RBI.

The Mariners took a 1-0 lead in the first on doubles by Suzuki
and Bloomquist, who got his first major league RBI.

In the third, the Angels tied it at 1 on David Eckstein's
sacrifice fly.

Anaheim's Brad Fullmer made a baserunning blunder in the seventh
after he doubled for his third hit. Bengie Molina hit a one-hopper
to Franklin, who caught Fullmer in a rundown.

Game notes
Suzuki became the seventh player in major league history
with at least 200 hits in each of his first two seasons. The last
player to do it was Harvey Kuenn (1953-54). Suzuki had 242 hits in
2001, when he was the AL MVP. ... In his second major league start,
Bloomquist had his first career hits. ... Olerud has had 100 RBI
four times, twice in three years with the Mariners. He leads the
majors with 12 sacrifice flies. The Mariners lead the majors as a
team with 71. ... Seattle 2B Bret Boone was out of the lineup with
a sore right heel. He was injured Saturday. Boone was on crutches
before Sunday's game, but the Mariners expect him to be able to
play Tuesday night. ... Wilson teased Boone after the game. "What
did you think of Willie Pipp today?'' he said of Bloomquist, who
started at second base in place of Boone.