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Sinking ship: Wayward Mariners drop 11th in row

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- The Seattle Mariners have tried just
about everything to end their losing skid. They even started Ichiro Suzuki in center field on Sunday.


Nothing has worked.

Chone Figgins singled home the winning run in the ninth inning
and the Los Angeles Angels beat Seattle 3-2 Sunday to send the
Mariners to their 11th straight loss.

"Miserable comes to mind. The others you can't print," manager
Mike Hargrove said, trying to describe the skid. "It's a good time
for a day off. Our guys have shown up every day to play, no matter
the circumstances. Eventually, this thing will end."

Seattle's losing streak is its longest since September 1992,
when the Mariners dropped a club-record 14 straight. All 11 losses
have come on this road trip, the first winless trip of 11 or more
games in the franchise's 30-year history.

"I don't know if there's a word to describe it," said Seattle
closer J.J. Putz, who surrendered Figgins' hit. "There's been
games where we haven't played very well, and games where we've
played really well and just didn't get the 'W.'

The Mariners have lost 20 straight games against AL West
opponents, extending their major-league record for consecutive
losses within a team's own division and tying the mark for
consecutive losses against any division. The Montreal Expos lost 20
straight against the NL West in 1969, according to the Elias Sports
Bureau.

"They've obviously hit a rough spot in the last couple of
weeks," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "But you learn
something very quickly in this game -- nobody is going to feel sorry
for you. It's just the nature of baseball."

Putz (2-1) came in with two out in the eighth after reliever
Rafael Soriano gave up a walk to Orlando Cabrera and a single to
Vladimir Guerrero. Garret Anderson, the Angels' career RBI leader,
greeted Putz with an opposite-field single to left that brought
home Cabrera to tie it at 2.

Reggie Willits led off the ninth with a single against Putz,
advanced on Jose Molina's sacrifice bunt and came home when Figgins
singled to left on the next pitch. The loss was Putz's first since
Aug. 12, 2005, when the Angels beat him in Anaheim.

"I was surprised that it found a hole," Figgins said. "The
ball I hit before that, I lined out to shortstop. I was thinking,
if [Yuniesky] Betancourt catches this one, I'm going to go chasing
him on the field."

Brendan Donnelly (3-0) pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief
for the win, allowing an infield hit.

Angels starter Ervin Santana, who surrendered three home runs
Tuesday in a no-decision at Texas, served up Richie Sexson's 26th
drive of the season in the fourth inning after a single by Raul Ibanez. The Angels got a run closer in the sixth on consecutive
doubles by Cabrera and Guerrero with none out.

Santana gave up two runs, four hits and five walks over seven
innings while striking out six.

Left-hander Jake Woods, making his first major league start
against his former team, threw 74 pitches over 5 2/3 innings and
allowed a run and five hits. He struck out two, walked one and
stranded runners at third base in the third and fourth innings.

The left-hander was inserted into the rotation after the
struggling Joel Pineiro was demoted to the bullpen on Wednesday.
Pineiro did not pitch in the four-game series against the Angels.

Suzuki, the Mariners' five-time Gold Glove right fielder,
started in center for the fourth time in his career and first time
since Aug. 17, 2002, at Detroit.

"Although we lost, playing center field today was something
that was enjoyable in a different way than usual," Suzuki said
through a translator. "When you play center field, you're able to
see everything."

Seattle's Adrian Beltre was 0-for-4, ending his hitting streak
at 15 games.

Game notes
Seattle's last win against a division rival was on June 11,
when it completed a three-game sweep at Anaheim with a 6-2 victory.
The Mariners' next game within their division is Aug. 28 at home
against the Angels. ... The blown save was the fifth for Putz in 30
opportunities. ... Angels bench coach Ron Roenicke served the
one-game suspension he received in the aftermath of Wednesday's
bench-clearing brawl at Texas. The team was 3-0 with Roenicke
running the team during suspension. "He set the bar pretty high,"
Scioscia said. "Now he's got to be in the penalty box like I
was." ... 2B Adam Kennedy and RHP Kevin Gregg finished serving
their four-game suspensions.