Seattle Mariners outfielders Seth Smith (L), Norichika Aoki of Japan (C), and Leonys Martin. Photo by David Tulis/UPI | License Photo
CINCINNATI -- Sunday morning brought bad news for the Seattle Mariners, who lost shortstop and leadoff batter Ketel Marte for at least a couple weeks with a sprained left thumb. But manager Scott Servais said his club has enough depth to overcome while Marte is out.
"Every team has to deal with this stuff," Servais said. "It's happened to numerous teams around the league. You plan for these things, having guys that can step in and fill a role."
On Sunday, that guy was Leonys Martin who came through with four hits while batting leadoff in place of Marte helping the Mariners rally for a 5-4 victory and complete the sweep of the Cincinnati Reds in the finale of a three-game interleague series at Great American Ball Park.
"We're riding the Leonys wave right now," Servais said. "He's really on a nice roll. Great game by him today. He really sparked us."
Martin led off an inning with a hit four times on Sunday, including a three-run fifth.
"I'm not worried about where I'm hitting in the lineup," Martin said. "I'm not trying to do too much. Just trying to get on base, maybe start a rally. I'm not trying to change my game."
Mariners starter Wade Miley got roughed up in the first inning, allowing three runs and three hits including a two-run double by Brandon Phillips as the Reds went ahead 3-0. Miley also hit a batter.
"Sometimes he forgets exactly who he is," Servais said of Miley. "He got a lot of fastballs in the first inning. But he made some adjustments and got us through six."
Seattle kept chipping away at Reds starter Alfredo Simon with a couple of runs in the third on Robinson Cano's RBI hit and an RBI grounder by Nelson Cruz to cut the deficit to one.
Reds left fielder Adam Duvall crushed an 0-1 pitch from Miley for his eighth homer making the score 4-2 in the fourth. The solo blast was estimated at 457 feet to left center, making it the longest homer hit by a Reds batter this season.
Miley (5-2) was charged with four earned runs and eight hits with a walk and six strikeouts in six innings.
"He had really good command (after the first)," said catcher Steve Clevenger, who went 1-for-4 with an RBI. "He was just up (in the zone) at the beginning of the game."
Seattle (26-17) broke through against Simon in the fifth, though.
RBI hits by Kyle Seager and Clevenger and a sacrifice fly from Cano put the Mariners ahead 5-4.
Duvall prevented a sixth run when he threw out Seager at home trying to score on Clevenger's hit. But the damage was done.
"We need (more) innings out of Simon as a veteran pitcher and that will happen when he keeps his pitches down," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "At some point in time, I have to see him improve and give us those types of innings. He's going to have to get better."
Simon (1-5) allowed five earned runs on nine hits in five innings raising his ERA to 10.16.
"I'm not doing anything different," Simon said. "I have to focus and keep my head up."
Cincinnati's struggling bullpen pitched well for the second straight day, extending its scoreless streak to seven innings.
Dayan Diaz made his major league debut and pitched a scoreless sixth. Blake Wood then tossed two scoreless frames. Lefty Tony Cingrani got out of a first-and-third jam in the ninth to keep Cincinnati (15-29) within a run.
The Mariners bullpen was effective as well, retiring the final 20 batters it faced in the series, including a perfect ninth on Sunday by closer Steve Cishek who nailed down his 12th save.
After being swept at home by the Angels, the Mariners responded by winning five of six on this road trip.
"Really nice road trip for us, coming off a rough series at home," Servais said. "We're really looking forward to getting home."
NOTES: Mariners SS Ketel Marte was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a sprained left thumb and recalled SS Chris Taylor from Triple-A Tacoma. Chris O'Malley started at shortstop on Sunday. ... Following Saturday's game, the Reds optioned RHPs Jumbo Diaz and Keyvius Sampson to Triple-A Louisville and designated for assignment RHP Steve Delebar. ... On Sunday, Cincinnati selected the contracts of RHPs Dayan Diaz, A.J. Morris and Josh Smith from Triple-A Louisville and transferred RHP Anthony DeSclafani and OF Yorman Rodriguez to the 60-day DL. ... Cincinnati 3B Eugenio Suarez struck out 10 times in the series, most ever for a Reds batter in a three-game series.