Tommy Milone pitched three scoreless innings and the Oakland Athletics’ offense kept rolling, scoring seven runs to the Seattle Mariners’ three for the win. Milone gave up three hits and stuck out three, showing good command of his offspeed pitches.
Hideki Okajima came in to pitch one inning of relief, and he’s had a solid spring training in the limited time he’s seen on the mound as he hasn’t allowed a run yet in Arizona. Against Seattle, he recorded one walk, one hit and one strikeout.
Oakland’s offense has continued to look solid, and today they were led by Hiro Nakajima, a great sign for the shortstop who’s still adjusting to major league opposition. Nakajima went 2-for-3 with an RBI, and he got the first run on the board for the A’s in the third inning when he crossed home on a single by Yoenis Cespedes.
The A’s kept it going in the fourth, scoring three runs after six batters reached base on a poor showing from Seattle youngster James Paxton. In the fifth, third basemen Jed Lowrie hit a two-run homer to give the A’s a 6-0 lead, and if he keeps that up in the regular season it’ll be a huge boost to an infield that’s got a few question marks as far as offensive production goes. Andy Parrino added a solo home run in the sixth to round out the scoring for the A’s.
Scott Sizemore returned from a bruised hand to start the game at second base, and it’s good to see him bounce back quick after missing all of last season with a knee injury.
A.J. Griffin takes the hill for the re-match against Seattle tomorrow, and the Mariners will have the full squad on hand after playing with a split squad today. If they win that one, go ahead and pencil them in for at least finishing third in the AL West, because if there’s one benchmark you use to predict division standings in September, it’s back-to-back spring training games in March. Just remember, you heard it here first.