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Allen twirls gem into seventh, Guardians continue early roll with win over Mariners

Logan Allen Cleveland Guardians Logan Allen - The Canadian Press

SEATTLE (AP) — Logan Allen scattered four hits over 6 2/3 shutout innings, Steven Kwan had three hits and scored three times in his first three at-bats, and the Cleveland Guardians continued their hot start with an 8-0 win over the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday.

The Guardians continued to thump opposing pitchers, battering Seattle starter George Kirby for a career-high eight earned runs, although he wasn’t helped by his defense. But Cleveland hit the ball hard against Kirby and stacked together three big innings to take its second straight series.

A day earlier, Cleveland rocked Seattle ace Luis Castillo for 10 hits then matched that effort against Kirby.

“We're good hitters and those two guys are very, very good, but we go up with a good game plan and take advantage of mistakes,” Cleveland manager Stephen Vogt said. “We were fortunate to jump on them and our guys have been having great at-bats all spring and all season so far.”

Allen (2-0) gave up J.P. Crawford’s infield single leading off the first inning, then didn’t allow another hit until Ty France’s single with two outs in the fourth. The lefty followed the game plan of using off-speed and breaking pitches against the Mariners, which has continued from last season to be Seattle’s weakness at the plate.

Allen struck out six and walked three, and enjoyed the freedom of pitching with the early lead.

“I think you're a little more aggressive on the plate, probably not nibbling corners so much," Allen said. "A little bit pitching the score, you've got a big lead, just not be afraid of contact as much (and) let the guys make some plays.”

Kwan got the offense started for Cleveland but plenty others chipped in. José Ramírez doubled twice and drove in a pair. Ramírez moved into a tie for fourth place in Guardians history for the most games with multiple extra-base hits with 99.

Josh Naylor drove in three runs without ever getting on base. He's the first Guardians player with three or more RBIs and no hits since Bob Chance in 1964.

A day after rocking Castillo, the Guardians continued to beat up the Mariners pitching staff, although Kirby (1-1) was not helped at all by his defense. The 10 hits allowed by Kirby were tied for the second-most in his career.

“They had a game plan, they were going to stay super aggressive, they were going to swing, they were going to put the ball in play — which they're good at — and we didn't make some plays behind (Kirby),” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “It got away from us early.”

But concerns about Seattle’s defense coming into the season continue to be validated.

Second baseman Jorge Polanco had what was originally scored an error changed to a hit in the first inning, but his swipe effort at stopping Will Brennan’s grounder could have cut down a run at home plate if fielded correctly. Catcher Seby Zavala failed to block a strike three in the dirt that led to a baserunner. France couldn’t get his glove cleanly on Andrés Giménez’s double in the second inning that scored a run, and shortstop Crawford and Polanco collided on a ground ball in the fourth inning when it appeared Polanco was in position to make the play.

Seattle wasn’t charged with any errors, but the poor defense gave Cleveland extra outs and the Guardians capitalized.

"They just made a lot of contact today and dropped in the field in the wrong places. It’s just one of those days,” Kirby said.


Cleveland will continue its road trip opening a three-game series in Minnesota with RHP Tanner Bibee (0-0, 6.75) on the mound. After an off day, Seattle will open a road trip in Milwaukee on Friday with Logan Gilbert (0-0, 1.29) on the mound against the Brewers.