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Garcia pitches well in front of Yankees scouts

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Maybe facing an NL team was what Seattle's
Freddy Garcia needed to enjoy something he rarely gets in the
American League: some run support.

Ichiro Suzuki hit a go-ahead double in a three-run seventh
inning and the Mariners beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-4 on Sunday
to complete a three-game sweep.

The Pirates were swept in three of their four interleague series
and went 2-10 against the AL West, the sixth time in seven seasons
they've had a losing record in interleague play.

"We've taken a licking," manager Lloyd McClendon said. "I've
been on the record for years as saying I'm not in favor of it."

While the Pirates dropped their 17th in 20 games, Seattle won
its fourth in a row and ninth in 13 games. The Mariners again got
strong starting pitching from a staff that has a 2.17 ERA in its
last 15 starts, with Garcia holding Pittsburgh to two runs in six
innings.

"We're starting to click a little bit," Bret Boone said. "We
can't make up for 2{ months in a week, but the talent here is too
good to play like we played early on."

With Yankees scouts watching him for a second straight start,
Garcia (4-6) ended a three-game losing streak. The Mariners hadn't
scored with Garcia in the game during his previous two starts, and
have one run or fewer with him on the mound in eight of his 14
starts.

"It was good to score some runs for him," manager Bob Melvin
said. "It was another typical outing that we see out of Freddy all
year, and it was nice to get him one."

Garcia is seeing some good signs from a team that remains buried
in the AL West basement -- besides more runs, of course.

"We know we've got a good team," he said. "We've got to get
it going and start playing like this, get on a streak and win more
games."

Eddie Guardado, in for the fourth straight game, pitched the
ninth for his second save of the series and 14th in 17 games. He
ended the game by getting Daryle Ward on a liner to short with
runners on first and second.

"We went into the game thinking we weren't going to use him,
but he was adamant about being able to pitch today," Melvin said.
"He's fearless."

Even if he doesn't always have the stomach to be a closer.
Guardado was so nervous, he vomited before facing his first hitter.

"It's just excitement," he said. "It just happened. I tried
to hold it in, but ... "

The Mariners trailed 2-1 against Pirates starter Oliver Perez
(3-4) until Dan Wilson and pinch-hitter Edgar Martinez walked with
one out in the seventh. Perez yielded only three hits, but walked
five -- three of whom scored -- and hit a batter.

Rookie left-hander Mike Gonzalez came on to allow Randy Winn's
tying single. Suzuki, 0-for-3 with two strikeouts against Perez,
followed with a two-out double to right-center to score Winn.
Cabrera also scored on the play to make it 4-2 when center fielder
Tike Redman had trouble scooping up the ball, drawing an error.

Despite solo homers by Daryle Ward in the sixth off Garcia and
Jason Kendall in the seventh off Shigetoshi Hasegawa, the Pirates
lost their ninth in 11 home games.

Pittsburgh took a 1-0 lead in the first after second baseman
Boone threw wildly on a potential force play at second.

Seattle tied it in the fourth on Wilson's RBI single before Ward
briefly put the Pirates up with his 10th homer -- 10 more than he
had last season with Los Angeles.

Kendall's homer into the first row of the left-field seats was
his first since Aug. 26. The Mariners got the run back on Hiram
Bocachica's sacrifice fly in the eighth, but the Pirates scored
again in their half of the inning on pinch-hitter Ruben Mateo's RBI
single against reliever Julio Mateo.

Despite Perez's wildness and occasional tendency to yield homers
in bunches, McClendon likes how the left-hander has progressed. His
3.68 ERA is easily the best of the Pirates' starters.

"You look at the statistics and he's up there with the big
boys," McClendon said. "If he stays healthy, he's going to have a
special career."

Game notes
The Pirates' Craig Wilson didn't start for the first time
this season. He is 0-for-19. ... The Mariners swept a three-game
interleague road series for the third straight season. They also
swept Philadelphia in 2003 and Cincinnati in 2002. ... Seattle is
8-4 against the NL with a series against St. Louis remaining. ...
The Pirates are 11-22 at home. ... Of the 98 NL players with enough
plate appearances to currently qualify for the batting title,
Kendall was the last to homer.