Shohei Ohtani on Monday night turned in his usual strong start, but after he left, things were anything but normal.
The Seattle Mariners scored four runs in a chaotic ninth inning, taking advantage of the Los Angeles Angels’ fielding woes for a 6-2 victory.
“There’s a lot to unpack. What started out as very normal game with two good starting pitchers out there got crazy at the end,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said.
Jesse Winker and J.P. Crawford each had two hits and two RBIs for the Mariners, who vaulted over Toronto and Baltimore into the top wild-card spot in the American League.
Ohtani struck out eight and allowed two runs in six innings. It was the first time since May 18 in Texas that the American League Most Valuable Player had a no-decision. The Japanese two-way phenom had gone 7-5 with a 2.60 ERA in his past 12 starts.
“The biggest flaw today is that I threw too many balls,” Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara.
The Angels had far bigger flaws after he departed.
The game was tied 2-2 going into the ninth inning before the Mariners broke through. Sam Haggerty got aboard with a one-out single off Aaron Loup (0-4).
Haggerty advanced to second when Angels catcher Max Stassi wildly threw to the bag even though Haggerty was not running. Haggerty stole third and then scored the go-ahead run on another fluky play.
With runners at the corners, Julio Rodriguez hit a line drive directly at Luis Rengifo. The normally sure-handed Rengifo, who was at second base after David Fletcher left with an injury, dropped the liner and threw home. Haggerty was caught in a rundown, but ended up scoring when no one was covering home plate.
“My first thought was to keep us in the inning and stop the double play. I saw Rengifo drop it and my first thought is to get a throw home,” said Haggerty, who described the entire inning as chaotic. “I wanted to stay in the rundown to give our runners another chance to advance. I turn my head and don’t see anyone at home, and I went for it.”
Seattle got some breathing room when Dylan Moore scored on Ty France’s grounder, after Stassi was unable to hold onto the throw to the plate for his second error of the inning. Rodriguez scored on Winker’s grounder and Crawford’s base hit plated France.
“It was awful. We made some bad decisions, throws, didn’t execute a rundown. Yeah, wasn’t good,” Angels interim manager Phil Nevin said.
In New York, the slumping New York Yankees were shut out in consecutive games for the first time since 2016, losing to Ryan Yarbrough and the Tampa Bay Rays 4-0.
New York failed to provide any run support for ace Gerrit Cole (9-5), whose only run allowed followed a misplay in center field by Aaron Hicks.
The American League East leaders were blanked for the fourth time in nine games and dropped to 8-16 since the All-Star break after a 64-28 start.
In other games, it was:
‧ Dodgers 4, Brewers 0
‧ Orioles 7, Blue Jays 3
‧ Braves 13, Mets 1
‧ White Sox 4, Astros 2
‧ Tigers 7, Guardians 5
‧ Marlins 3, Padres 0
‧ Rangers 2, Athletics 1
‧ Twins 4, Royals 2
‧ Phillies 4, Reds 3
‧ Nationals 5, Cubs 4
‧ Giants 6, Diamondb
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