SEATTLE (AP) — Nolan Arenado hit a sacrifice fly for his 110th RBI of the season, Colorado scored a pair of runs on Kyle Seager’s throwing error and the Rockies beat the Seattle Mariners 3-2 on Sunday.
Arenado, the National League leader in RBIs, capped a third inning when the Rockies scored without a base hit. Charlie Blackmon walked, advanced to second on a groundout, stole third and scored on Arenado’s fly ball to deep right field. The Rockies added two more an inning later when Willin Rosario doubled leading off, Justin Morneau walked. Both scored when Seager overthrew catcher Steven Baron trying to cut down Rosario at the plate after Dustin Garneau hit a weak groundball to third. It was the 16th error of the season for Seager.
Mount Vernon High School product Kyle Kendrick (6-12) allowed two runs over five innings to pick up his second straight victory for Colorado.
Kendrick grew up about 90 minutes north of Seattle, but had never pitched against the Mariners in his career. With a small cheering section behind home plate, Kendrick won consecutive games for the first time this season.
Seth Smith had a two-out, two-run single in the fourth to account for the Mariners offense. Seattle had a chance in the eight after Ketel Marte walked with one out. Seager sliced a drive into the left field corner, but Brandon Barnes raced over to make a diving catch and was able to get ball back into the infield in time for Marte to be doubled off first after advancing too far.
John Axford pitched the ninth for his 23rd save in 28 opportunities.
James Paxton (3-4) made his first start since May 28 for Seattle, sidelined by a strained tendon in his left middle finger. Paxton figured prominently in Seattle’s rotation plans this season, but made just 10 starts before landing on the disabled list and facing a number of setbacks during his recovery.
Paxton was on a limit of 80-85 pitches but was pulled two batters into the fourth inning at 66 pitches. He struck out four and allowed only two hits, but issued three walks.
Colorado manager Walt Weiss said catchers Dustin Garneau and Tom Murphy will split time behind the plate over the final few weeks of the season. Murphy was set for instructional league in Arizona before Lake Washington High School grad Nick Hundley landed on the disabled list on Friday.
Mariners: Brad Miller was slated to start in center field but was a late scratch with neck spasms. James Jones started in his place.
Rockies: Colorado opens a series in Los Angeles against the Dodgers with Jon Gray (0-0) still seeking his first major league victory. The Rockies are 1-6 in his previous starts.
Mariners: Taijuan Walker (10-8) makes one of his final starts of the season on Monday night against the Angels. Walker will likely have a start skipped down the stretch to control his innings.