Oakland, California – Yusei Kikuchi got his first win in nearly a month and his second of the season Monday as the Seattle Mariners ended a six-game losing streak by beating the Oakland Athletics 4-2.
Kikuchi (2-3) — who had not won a game since April 29 — set the tone for the Mariners, allowing just one run on four hits with three strikeouts and two walks in six-plus innings at the Oakland Coliseum. It was his fifth consecutive quality start.
The 29-year-old Japanese lefty gave up a solo homer to Mark Canha in the third that cut the visitors’ lead to 3-1. He was having a solid showing until signaling a timeout with an apparent back injury. He was replaced by right-hander Rafael Montero with no outs and a runner on first in the seventh.
For the Mariners, Mitch Haniger opened the scoring with an RBI double in the first, Kyle Lewis hit a two-run homer in the third, and Jarred Kelenic hit a leadoff homer in the fifth, all off Oakland starter Frankie Montas (5-4).
The win was Kikuchi’s first ever against the A’s in seven career head-to-head matchups.
With several pitchers already sidelined by injury, the Mariners will hope to avoid adding Kikuchi, their best starter in recent weeks, to the injured list.
In minor league baseball, Gosuke Katoh, who was born in Califonia to Japanese parents, hit his first homer of the season for the El Paso Chihuahuas, the Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres. He went 1-for-4 with an RBI in the team’s 7-2 loss to the Houston Astros’ Triple A club, the Sugar Land Skeeters.
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