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Mariners pound Burnett, stay on pace in AL West

SEATTLE (AP) -- If rookie Mark Lowe continues pitching this well,
manager Mike Hargrove is going to run out of glowing adjectives to
describe his performance.

Lowe pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the eighth inning, and
Seattle's Jamie Moyer won for the first time in a month as the
Mariners beat the Toronto Blue Jays 7-4 Wednesday night.

"This kid's been golden every time we've brought him out,"
Hargrove said of the 23-year-old reliever who has not allowed a run
in 8 1/3 innings since being called up from Double-A San Antonio on
July 7. "You don't see him get excited, you don't see him get mad,
you don't see him get down, you see the same face, the same body
language and he throws the (heck) out of the ball."

With one-out and the bases loaded, Lowe got hot-hitting Reed Johnson to bounce an outside fastball to second baseman Jose Lopez,
who doubled up the speedy Lowe and preserved the Mariners three-run
lead.

Closer J.J. Putz gave up two hits leading off the ninth, but
struck out Troy Glaus and Lyle Overbay, and got Gregg Zaun to fly
out for his 20th save in 24 chances, giving Moyer his first win
since June 24 at San Diego.

"It was a good night ... but scary," Hargrove said. "Playing
Toronto, with the way they swing those bats is always scary."

Moyer got plenty of offensive help as the Mariners took two of
three from the Blue Jays and closed their homestand 4-2 to stay
three back of Los Angeles in the AL West.

The 43-year-old soft-throwing lefty overcame a shaky first
inning to scatter eight hits and give up four runs, while striking
out three. In his previous two starts combined, Moyer (6-9) had
allowed 13 earned runs, 18 hits and eight homers, including a
club-record-tying five last Friday against Boston.

This time, it was the Mariners providing the long balls as
Adrian Beltre and Richie Sexson both hit solo home runs.

"Toronto's a club that, of the teams I've faced this year, they
give you good at-bats top to bottom," Moyer said. "Regardless of
the situation, they make you earn what you get."

Toronto scored three times in the sixth to end Moyer's night.
Vernon Wells led off with a single and Glaus walked. Moyer stayed
in to face Overbay, who ripped a single off the wall in right to
score Wells.

Julio Mateo entered, but allowed two hits, committed an error
and allowed Glaus and Overbay to score before Ichiro Suzuki made a
running catch of Johnson's sinking liner to end the inning.

Lowe came on with one-out in the eighth and walked No. 9 hitter
John McDonald to load the bases before getting Johnson's groundout.

"At the time I was upset," Lowe said. "But I try not to show
emotion on the mound."

While Moyer rebounded, Toronto starter A.J. Burnett (2-4) was
battered for six runs and 10 hits in just four innings, matching
his shortest outing of the year, losing for the third time in his
last four decisions.

He lasted four innings on April 21 against Boston.

"It wasn't A.J.'s night. He had trouble locating the ball and
(Seattle) came out firing," Toronto manager John Gibbons said.
"They came out aggressive and got some big hits."

Toronto took a 1-0 lead in the first on Overbay's two-out single
to score Aaron Hill, but Burnett failed to capitalize. Raul Ibanez
sliced a two-out RBI double just inside the left-field line to
score Suzuki, and Sexson and Greg Dobbs following with RBI singles
for a 3-1 Seattle lead.

Beltre led off the third with his ninth homer of the season deep
into the Blue Jays' bullpen. Seattle added a pair in the fourth on
consecutive RBI doubles from backup catcher Rene Rivera and rookie
center fielder Adam Jones.

Burnett was pulled, but Scott Downs was met in the fifth by
Sexson's 21st homer, a 430-foot shot that one-hopped the hitting
backdrop beyond the center-field wall.

Burnett had pitched at least six innings in five of his six
starts since coming off the disabled list on June 22.

Game notes
Wells had missed the last two games with a sore back. He
was the DH on Wednesday. ... Suzuki successfully stole his 28th
consecutive base in the first inning, tying the single-season club
record held by Julio Cruz in 1981. Suzuki hasn't been caught
stealing since April 19 and has 34 for the season. ... Toronto OF
Alex Rios had an RBI double in his first at-bat in his minor league
rehab with Triple-A Syracuse on Wednesday night. Rios played five
innings in right field and is expected to play one more game in
Syracuse.