Walker hit hard in Mariners’ 12-0 loss to A’s
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Seattle Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon says it’s too early to worry about his team’s sluggish start this season.
Pitcher Taijuan Walker agrees, even if his first outing of the year had disastrous results.
Walker allowed a career-high nine runs in 3 1-3 innings and Seattle’s offense got completely shut down by Oakland starter Drew Pomeranz and two relievers in a 12-0 loss to the Athletics on Friday night.
“We were on the receiving end tonight,” McClendon said. “We’ll hand out a few. It was just their night. Give them credit. They came out attacking.”
Ike Davis drove in four runs, Mark Canha hit his first major league home run and Sam Fuld added three hits for Oakland.
The A’s continued their pattern of an on-again, off-again offense by knocking around Walker and three relievers. In its three wins this season, Oakland has outscored its opponents 30-0.
Walker (0-1), who went 4-0 with a 0.67 ERA in the spring, was roughed up. He gave up nine hits in the shortest start of his career and had three strikeouts and two walks.
“I was throwing strikes and they were finding holes and getting hits,” Walker said. “I didn’t think it was that bad but the results were. I’d like to be mad about it but it’s just baseball.”
Canha, who came within inches of hitting a grand slam on Wednesday, went 3 for 5. He reached on an infield single and scored on Ben Zobrist’s double in the first. His homer off Walker in the second came on a 2-0 pitch and landed halfway up the bleacher seats in left.
Zobrist doubled twice while Marcus Semien added two hits, both coming in the fourth when Oakland scored six times to break the game open.
Pomeranz (1-0) beat out Jesse Chavez for the fifth spot in the A’s rotation and showed why in his first start of the season. He gave up just two hits and faced only one batter over the minimum through seven innings.
“That’s a pretty tough lineup to navigate your way through,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. “He had it all working tonight and he got on a roll. You could see the confidence grow.”
The Oakland left-hander struck out six and didn’t allow a baserunner until Austin Jackson’s single to left with one out in the fourth. He promptly got Robinson Cano to hit into a double play on the next pitch, then set down the next seven Mariners.
Fernando Abad pitched the eighth while R.J. Alvarez worked the ninth to complete the shutout.
The Mariners had won six straight road openers before getting shut out in Oakland. A year ago Seattle went 46-35 away from Safeco Field, the second-best road record in the American League. “It was a bad night,” McClendon said. “You turn the page and move on.”
Mariners: OF Seth Smith sat out his third straight game with a groin strain but McClendon is hopeful of getting Smith back in the lineup Saturday.
Athletics: The team has pushed back plans to activate OF Josh Reddick from the disabled list. Reddick will play at least one more game in the minors before rejoining the big league club. ... Closer Sean Doolittle has extended his long toss workouts to 90 feet. ... LHP Barry Zito gave up five runs and 10 hits in his first minor league start for Triple-A Nashville.
Mariners: RHP J.A. Happ makes his Seattle debut on Saturday against Oakland. The former Toronto Blue Jays pitcher won his only start against the A’s in 2014.
Athletics: RHP Sonny Gray (1-0) makes his second start of the season and eighth of his career against Seattle. Gray carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning against Texas on opening day and has an 18-inning scoreless streak going.