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Mariners' Tim Beckham gets first bat-flip of 2019 vs. A's

By Alex Butler
Mariners' Tim Beckham gets first bat-flip of 2019 vs. A's
Seattle Mariners shortstop Tim Beckham threw his bat in the air after smacking a two-run homer during a win against the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday at the Tokyo Dome in Japan. Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/EPA-EFE

March 20 (UPI) -- Having the first game of 2019 meant Seattle Mariners star Tim Beckham had a chance to get the first bat-flip of the season. He came through Wednesday in Japan.

The Mariners shortstop took Oakland Athletics reliever Ryan Dull deep in the top of the fifth frame during the 9-7 win at the Tokyo Dome, opening up Major League Baseball's regular season slate.

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Seattle entered the inning with a 6-4 lead. Ryon Healy doubled in Edwin Encarnacion in the fourth at-bat of the inning, beckoning Beckham to the plate. Dull worked a 1-2 count against the infielder before the righty fired a pitch toward the middle of the strike zone.

Beckham bashed the offering for a towering shot to left center field. The infielder watched the ball as it was about to leave the park before tossing his bat high behind his head in celebration.

Beckham went 3-for-3 with three runs scores, two RBIs and a walk in the victory. Domingo Santana also homered for the Mariners. Khris Davis, Matt Chapman and Stephen Piscotty each went deep for Oakland.

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"Tim's home run later in the game proved to be really big," Mariners manager Scott Servais told reporters. "We have to keep put pressure on teams the entire game, and we've got a lineup that can do that this year."

The Mariners and Athletics have another showdown at 5:35 a.m. Thursday in Tokyo. The game will air on ESPN.

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