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Astros, Rangers wrap up regular season with losses

Jones, Showalter preside over Orioles’ 4-0 win over Astros

By DAVID GINSBURG

BALTIMORE (AP) _ The Baltimore Orioles ended a trying season Sunday with a salute to outfielder Adam Jones and a 4-0 victory over the Houston Astros that could end up serving as a parting gift to manager Buck Showalter.

Jimmy Yacabonis, Paul Fry (1-2) and Mychal Givens combined on a one-hitter against the AL West champions, who open the playoffs at home Friday against Cleveland.

Baltimore finished at 47-115, the most losses in franchise history and the most for a big league team since Detroit’s 119 in 2003. The Orioles were only the fifth team since 1900 to lose 115 or more.

Baltimore is already in full rebuilding mode, which means the 33-year-old Jones and Showalter may not be back.

When it came time for the Orioles to take the field before the game, Jones went out alone while players from both sides applauded and the fans stood and cheered. Jones started in center field, the position he held from 2008 until he was bumped to right field in August by 23-year-old rookie Cedric Mullins.

Many in the crowd of 24,916 stood before each at-bat by Jones, who went 0 for 4.

In the top of the ninth, Showalter sent Joey Rickard in to replace Jones, who received yet another standing ovation as he jogged off the field. Upon his
arrival in the dugout, the chain of hugs and high-fives ended with his arms wrapped around Showalter.

Hired by Orioles owner Peter Angelos in 2010, Showalter _ like Jones _ has a contract that expires this year and may not be renewed.

“Mr. Angelos’ family has been great to me and mine,” Showalter said before the game. “So whatever direction they decide to go, I’m at peace with it.”

Houston manager A.J. Hinch rested most of his regulars, making sure they’re fresh for the postseason. Charlie Morton started and worked three innings, allowing just one hit in a performance that showed he’s ready to be a factor in the playoffs.

Brad Peacock (3-5) gave up four runs in the fourth inning, getting only one out.

Houston’s only hit came in the fourth, when Jose Altuve hit a sharp single to right before leaving for a pinch runner.

WHITTLING THE ROSTER

Hinch shaved five players off his projected playoff roster, with more cuts to come.

Right-hander Dean Deetz, OF Kyle Tucker and LHP Reymin Guduan had their seasons end Sunday. Pitchers Framber Valdez and Cionel Perez will work at the team’s spring training facility to “stay as active as they can in case of an injury or in case of a call from us,” said Hinch, adding that in the next few days he will decide whether to carry three catchers.

CORREA SHARP

Astros shortstop Carlos Correa was rested Sunday after an abbreviated appearance Saturday that indicated he was no longer bothered by back soreness.

“I think (Saturday) was a really good sign, with two good swings and a couple of difficult plays on defense,” Hinch said. “I don’t think we can forget he’s a really good player, and really good players step up when you need them the most. We’re going to need that starting Friday.”

DUBIOUS RECORD

Orioles first baseman Chris Davis sat out the entire series and finished with a .168 batting average, lowest in major league history by a qualifier.

The previous record was .177, by Rob Deer in 1991 and Dan Uggla in 2013.

It’s been a harsh decline for Davis, who signed a $161 million, seven-year contract after the 2015 season.

The Orioles probably can’t find a taker in a trade, and it would be extremely costly to cut him.

ATTENDANCE DROP

The Orioles drew 1,564,192 for 78 home dates, their lowest figure in a non-strike season since 1978.

“It’s up to us to give them something they want to embrace,” Showalter said. “Attendance is down. It’s our fault, not theirs.”

UP NEXT

Astros: Hinch hasn’t announced his rotation for the playoffs, but Justin Verlander is the likely starter in Game 1. “I don’t think it’s too much of a secret,” the manager said.

Orioles: The 2019 season opener will be at Yankee Stadium on March 28.

 

By TIM BOOTH

SEATTLE (AP) _ Roenis Elias allowed one hit in five innings, and the Seattle Mariners closed out the regular season with a 3-1 win over the Texas Rangers on Sunday in what could be the final game of Adrian Beltre’s career.

The Texas third baseman has not announced whether this was his final season, although Sunday had the feeling of finality. Beltre played 41/2 innings before being lifted before the bottom of the fifth, given a standing ovation by the crowd of 21,146. Beltre went 1 for 2 and finished with a .273 average, 15 homers and 65 RBIs.

Like his demeanor for most of his career, Beltre had fun should it be his final game. Beltre blooped a single to right leading off the second inning. He was almost immediately doubled off when Joey Gallo’s liner was caught by first baseman Ryon Healy. After he was called out, Beltre jogged to the Mariners dugout railing and gave close friend Felix Hernandez a hug before heading back to the Rangers dugout.

Beltre had another humorous moment on the final out of the fourth inning with runners on first and second. Ryon Healy stopped running to third and retreated toward second base, but Beltre waved Healy back toward third and tagged him for the final out.

Beltre, who spent five seasons with the Mariners from 2005-09, was given a standing ovation leading off the fifth inning as a “Thank You, Adrian” message was shown on the video board. Beltre tipped his helmet to the crowd before flying out to right field. Beltre took the field for the bottom of the fifth and was replaced by Jurickson Profar, receiving hugs from all of his teammates on the field and in the dugout.

The blooper by Beltre was the only hit allowed by Elias (3-1), who struck out four and walked none in a game that took just 2 hours, 14 minutes. David Freitas had an RBI double and Andrew Romine a run-scoring single off Yovani Gallardo (8-8) in the second inning. Kyle Seager added a sacrifice fly in the fifth.

Seattle finished with 89 victories, its most since 2003, but it was a hallow accomplishment after seeing the longest playoff drought in any of the four major U.S. pro sports extended to 17 years. The Mariners last made the postseason in 2001 and in the middle of June appeared set to finally end that streak leading Oakland by 11 games in the wild-card race. That lead disappeared quickly as Oakland caught Seattle by August and raced past the Mariners over the final two months.

After having the 11-game lead, Seattle went 43-48 over the final 101 games.

Texas finished last in the AL West for the first time since 2014 and had consecutive losing seasons for the first time since going four straight years under .500 from 2005-08. The 95 losses matched the most for Texas since losing 99 games in 1985.

FAREWELL?

Seattle slugger Nelson Cruz was replaced in right field with one out in the top of the fourth inning by Ben Gamel. Cruz was given a standing ovation as he jogged to the dugout in what could be his final game with the Mariners with his contract up after the season. Cruz has been one of the best free agent signings in Mariners history. Cruz, who turned 38 in July, hit .256 with 37 home runs and 97 RBIs this season. He hit 163 homers and had 414 RBIs in his four seasons with Seattle.

HOMERS OVER HITS

Rangers slugger Joey Gallo finished with more home runs (40) than singles (38). Gallo had 103 hits in 500 at-bats on the season. He batted .206

UP NEXT

Rangers: Texas opens on March 28 at home against the Chicago Cubs.

Mariners: Seattle starts on March 20 in Tokyo against Oakland.

 

Beltre farewell? Mariners top Rangers 3-1 to finish off 2018

By TIM BOOTH

SEATTLE (AP) _ Roenis Elias allowed one hit in five innings, and the Seattle Mariners closed out the regular season with a 3-1 win over the Texas Rangers on Sunday in what could be the final game of Adrian Beltre’s career.

The Texas third baseman has not announced whether this was his final season, although Sunday had the feeling of finality. Beltre played 41/2 innings before being lifted before the bottom of the fifth, given a standing ovation by the crowd of 21,146. Beltre went 1 for 2 and finished with a .273 average, 15 homers and 65 RBIs.

Like his demeanor for most of his career, Beltre had fun should it be his final game. Beltre blooped a single to right leading off the second inning. He was almost immediately doubled off when Joey Gallo’s liner was caught by first baseman Ryon Healy. After he was called out, Beltre jogged to the Mariners dugout railing and gave close friend Felix Hernandez a hug before heading back to the Rangers dugout.

Beltre had another humorous moment on the final out of the fourth inning with runners on first and second. Ryon Healy stopped running to third and retreated toward second base, but Beltre waved Healy back toward third and tagged him for the final out.

Beltre, who spent five seasons with the Mariners from 2005-09, was given a standing ovation leading off the fifth inning as a “Thank You, Adrian” message was shown on the video board. Beltre tipped his helmet to the crowd before flying out to right field. Beltre took the field for the bottom of the fifth and was replaced by Jurickson Profar, receiving hugs from all of his teammates on the field and in the dugout.

The blooper by Beltre was the only hit allowed by Elias (3-1), who struck out four and walked none in a game that took just 2 hours, 14 minutes. David Freitas had an RBI double and Andrew Romine a run-scoring single off Yovani Gallardo (8-8) in the second inning. Kyle Seager added a sacrifice fly in the fifth.

Seattle finished with 89 victories, its most since 2003, but it was a hallow accomplishment after seeing the longest playoff drought in any of the four major U.S. pro sports extended to 17 years. The Mariners last made the postseason in 2001 and in the middle of June appeared set to finally end that streak leading Oakland by 11 games in the wild-card race. That lead disappeared quickly as Oakland caught Seattle by August and raced past the Mariners over the final two months.

After having the 11-game lead, Seattle went 43-48 over the final 101 games.

Texas finished last in the AL West for the first time since 2014 and had consecutive losing seasons for the first time since going four straight years under .500 from 2005-08. The 95 losses matched the most for Texas since losing 99 games in 1985.

FAREWELL?

Seattle slugger Nelson Cruz was replaced in right field with one out in the top of the fourth inning by Ben Gamel. Cruz was given a standing ovation as he jogged to the dugout in what could be his final game with the Mariners with his contract up after the season. Cruz has been one of the best free agent signings in Mariners history. Cruz, who turned 38 in July, hit .256 with 37 home runs and 97 RBIs this season. He hit 163 homers and had 414 RBIs in his four seasons with Seattle.

HOMERS OVER HITS

Rangers slugger Joey Gallo finished with more home runs (40) than singles (38). Gallo had 103 hits in 500 at-bats on the season. He batted .206

UP NEXT

Rangers: Texas opens on March 28 at home against the Chicago Cubs.

Mariners: Seattle starts on March 20 in Tokyo against Oakland.

Short URL: http://wtaw.com/?p=127439

Posted by on Oct 1 2018. Filed under Sports.
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