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Kennedy single knocks in first two

4/8/2004

SEATTLE (AP) -- The Anaheim Angels homered and sprayed singles in
their opening series.

They can win either way.

Adam Kennedy hit a go-ahead, two-run single during a five-run
rally in the ninth inning, leading the Angels over the Seattle
Mariners 5-1 on Thursday for a three-game sweep.

The burst came after Seattle had everything in hand, leading 1-0
with star reliever Shigetoshi Hasegawa on the mound. But this
comeback was fueled by singles, not the home runs the Angels
launched earlier in the series.

"It makes the game fun," Kennedy said. "We know if the big
boys aren't hitting homers, we've still got a chance. We just put
together a bunch of singles in the end and came away with the
win."

Anaheim, which stumbled to a 77-85 record last year after
winning the 2002 World Series, came back after a solid effort by
Seattle starter Freddy Garcia. He allowed four hits over seven
innings, struck out seven and walked two.

"We didn't win today," Garcia said. "Maybe we'll do better
tomorrow."

And Garcia took the ball after the high-powered Angels had
battered Seattle's Jamie Moyer and Joel Pineiro in the first two
games.

"Freddy was outstanding," Mariners manager Bob Melvin said.
"Coming after two games where our starters got roughed up a little
bit, it was a very impressive outing. It was doubly impressive
after what happened in the first two."

Scott Shields (1-0) relieved in seventh, throwing two scoreless
innings with three strikeouts.

The Mariners were in great shape after Julio Mateo pitched a
scoreless eighth. Left-hander Mike Myers took over in the ninth,
giving up a leadoff single to Garret Anderson.

Everything still looked good for Seattle when manager Bob Melvin
turned to Shigetoshi Hasegawa (0-1), who converted 16 of 17 save
chances last year.

But singles by Troy Glaus and Jose Guillen loaded the bases with
no outs. Hasegawa struck out Tim Salmon before Kennedy lined a
single just over Bret Boone's glove at second.

"I was close, but I don't know how close," Boone said.

Kennedy said: "I could never really tell if he caught it until
I saw it quite a bit a ways out into the outfield."

Hasegawa tried a pickoff attempt to get Kennedy at first, and
was called for a balk that scored Guillen for a 3-1 lead. Darin
Erstad added a two-out, two-run double, and the celebration was on.

"For eight innings, they got the best of us on the field and
the mound," Anaheim manager Mike Scioscia said. "We were
fortunate to get that the ninth inning and string together those
great at-bats."

Seattle went ahead 1-0 -- its first lead of the season -- after
Rich Aurilia hit a fourth-inning comebacker that bounced off the
glove of Anaheim starter Kelvim Escobar. Raul Ibanez came home on
the play.

Anaheim scored 20 runs on 28 hits in the first two games of the
series, but Garcia clamped the Angels with a mix of fastballs and
sliders. Four times, he retired the side in order.

"Freddy looks like he is back on his game," Scioscia said.

Escobar, who made his Angels' debut after signing an $18.75
million, three-year contract during the offseason, allowed seven
hits in six innings with four strikeouts and two walks.

Game notes
The Angels opened 3-0 for only the third time in their
44-year history. Seattle has opened 0-4 four times. ... Anaheim
scored at least four runs in an inning four times in the series.
The Angels outscored Seattle 25-13. ... Mariners DH Edgar Martinez
went 1-for-2 with a walk against Escobar, improving to 14-for-26
(.538) against the pitcher. ... Garcia's career ERA is 2.24 in 17
starts against the Angels. ... Anaheim RF Vladimir Guerrero was
0-for-5 with two strikeouts.