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Shohei Ohtani Went 0 for 4 for the Angels; Mariners Past Angels 3-2 for Their 4th Straight Victory

AP Photo/Ashley Landis
Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (17) reacts after hitting a foul ball off his right leg during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 5, 2023.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — George Kirby pitched seven stellar innings of three-hit ball for his career-best 10th victory, and Julio Rodríguez had a two-run double among his three hits in the Seattle Mariners’ fourth straight win, 3-2 over the stumbling Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night.

Brandon Drury drove in a run on a ground-rule double off Mariners reliever Andrés Muñoz during the Angels’ two-out rally in the ninth, but the ball bouncing over the fence prevented pinch-runner Andrew Velazquez from easily scoring the tying run. Muñoz then struck out Hunter Renfroe with the bases loaded to end the Mariners’ third straight win in this four-game series.

Ty France added an RBI single in the eighth for the Mariners (59-52), who have won 12 of 16 while moving 3 1/2 games ahead of Los Angeles (56-56) in the crowded race behind Toronto for the final AL wild-card spot.

Randal Grichuk homered and Shohei Ohtani went 0 for 4 for the Angels, who have lost five consecutive games since the MLB trade deadline passed. Injury-plagued Los Angeles has lost seven of nine overall, badly weakening the playoff chances of a team that acquired six veterans and didn’t trade Ohtani in a desperate bid for its first playoff appearance since 2014.

Kirby (10-8) came through with another strong start for the Mariners, striking out five and issuing no walks while going seven innings for the fourth time in his last nine outings. The AL All-Star finished impressively, striking out three Angels in the sixth before getting three outs on only five pitches in the seventh.

Matt Brash got through the eighth with help from a slick double-play turn by shortstop J.P. Crawford. Muñoz survived the ninth for his fifth save despite walking C.J. Cron and allowing Mike Moustakas’ single before Drury’s ground-rule double.

Tyler Anderson (5-3) yielded two hits and two runs over five innings for the Angels, but dropped to 1-2 in his last seven starts.

Rodríguez played with passion from the first inning after his successful steal of second apparently was negated by umpire interference. Rodríguez was caught on a second attempt, and he was visibly furious while walking back to the dugout, where he got into an apparent shouting match with someone in the stands while video review upheld the call.

Rodríguez put the Mariners up 2-0 in the third with his long double to the left-field wall, giving him RBIs in consecutive games for only the second time in a month. Grichuk responded in the bottom half with his second homer since rejoining the Angels last week.

Crawford tied the Seattle record by drawing a walk in his 10th consecutive game. Ken Griffey Jr. did it in 1994, and Jay Buhner matched it in 1994.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Angels: The cramping in Ohtani’s pitching hand has subsided, and he will make his next mound start on schedule, manager Phil Nevin said. Ohtani is slated to face San Francisco on Wednesday night in the Halos’ homestand finale.