SEATTLE (AP) - Charlie Furbush admitted he was ``a little out of whack' in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels.
Just enough to put the Seattle Mariners in a hole they couldn't climb out of Thursday night.
Torii Hunter hit a three-run homer off Furbush in the first and Howie Kendrick connected in the third to help a wild Ervin Santana overcome seven walks in Los Angeles' 4-3 win.
``The results show I was all over the place,' Furbush said. ``After the first inning, I settled down all right. I just have to get that first inning out of the way next time.'
Furbush, who came over from Detroit in a July 30 trade, went six innings, his second-longest stint in eight starts. He gave up four runs and four hits, walked three and struck out five.
``I loved that he recovered. He battled, got us through six innings, looked better as the game went along,' Mariners manager Eric Wedge said.
In his previous two starts, both losses, Furbush (3-7) had given up nine runs in a combined eight innings.
``I was making adjustments the whole game,' he said. ``That's the name of the game of pitching right there. I got a little out of whack in the first inning but tried to do the best I could the rest of the game.'
Besides the home run by Hunter in the first, Furbush's other costly mistake was Kendrick's homer in the third, his 15th. It turned out to be the difference in the game.
Kendrick has six home runs in his last 11 games, and his 15 this season are five more than his previous career high.
``I'm just getting mistakes to hit,' Kendrick said. ``I'm not trying to change anything. The ball is carrying a little farther this year, I guess. I can't tell you I'm going up there trying to swing a little harder. I haven't really changed my approach.'
The Angels remained 3 1/2 games behind AL West leader Texas. The Rangers beat Tampa Bay 7-2.
Santana (10-9) also had an uneven outing. He was not nearly as sharp as he had been since mid-July, when he began a five-game winning streak. He entered 6-1 with a 2.06 ERA and three complete games in his previous nine starts, and 4-0 with a 1.68 ERA in his last four road starts.
His seven walks were a season high, with two scoring. It was one walk short of his career high. Santana went 6 2-3 innings, his shortest outing since lasting 6 1-3 innings July 16, while allowing four hits and three runs. He struck out five.
``Obviously, Ervin was not in sync tonight,' Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. ``He battled. He got some double-play balls. He had a 4-0 lead, then walks the bottom of the order in the third and those guys took advantage of it and that helped them get back in the game. But as the game went on, his breaking ball was better, he had better command. He held up.'
Jordan Walden worked the ninth for his 27th save in 36 opportunities. In six appearances against Seattle this season, he has four saves and two wins.
Santana had a control blip in the third and the Mariners struck. He walked Brendan Ryan and Trayvon Robinson. Ichiro Suzuki followed with a double, scoring Ryan.
With one out, Dustin Ackley drilled a single up the middle, scoring Robinson and Suzuki to cut it to 4-3. But the Angels held on to earn a four-game split.
``Maybe for him a little bit off, but he (Santana) still had his stuff,' Ackley said. ``He had the two-seamer working good and the slider and everything to keep us off balance. He will maybe make a mistake here and there, but you've got to take advantage of it.'
Seattle's two victories in the series were both highlighted by eighth-inning hits from Mike Carp, a two-run homer Monday to win 5-3 and a two-run double Wednesday to win 2-1.
In the eighth inning Thursday, Carp walked on four pitches.
``We're thinking, don't pitch to Carp. Don't pitch to him and don't throw him a fastball,' Hunter said. ``We didn't. He's been impressive, man.'
NOTES: Suzuki's single in the seventh gave him 267 hits against the Angels, moving him ahead of Cal Ripken (266) for third place on the career list for Angels opponents. He trails George Brett (282) and Carl Yastrzemski (281). ... Carp has hit safely in nine straight games against the Angels, batting .438 (14 for 32) with two home runs and seven RBIs.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved