Garcia hurls gem, leads M's to win

The Chief won No. 8 on the year (Getty Images)

Seattle knocked Anaheim even further back in the American League West, dropping the Angels 13.5 behind. The Mariners (48-22) and Angels (34-35) play the final game of the four-game series Thursday at 1:35 p.m. M's lefty Jamie Moyer will face Angels' righty Ramon Ortiz.

The Seattle Mariners sent Freddy Garcia to the hill Wednesday night against the Anaheim Angels, hopeful that the 27-year-old right-hander could continue his recent string of good outings.

Garcia didn't disappoint, winning his fifth-straight decision with eight scoreless innings en route to a Mariners' 2-0 victory. He allowed five hits and struck out three along the way.

In his past three outings, Garcia (8-6) has allowed just two runs in 24.1 innings. In doing so, his ERA has dipped to 4.30.

Unlike his recent outings, however, "The Chief" didn't get the run support in the early innings this time around. In fact, it wasn't until the sixth inning that the first run was scored.

Former Mariner right-hander Aaron Sele, back in the Angels rotation after missing the early part of the season due to injury, was a tough customer for the Seattle bats. He limited the Mariners to four hits in five innings, allowing just one run.

That run came after Sele allowed back-to-back walks to Edgar Martinez and John Olerud starting the sixth. Ben Weber came in for relief, but Mike Cameron greeted him with a double, scoring Martinez. Sele was charged with the run.

Seattle added a run off of the toughest pitcher in baseball this season, Brendon Donnelly, in the eighth. Donnelly hit Edgar with a pitch to start off the inning. M's manager Bob Melvin brought in Luis Ugueto to pinch run, and after two outs were recorded the young speedster swiped second base. With Ugueto in scoring position, Randy Winn came through with a run-scoring single to right field for an insurance run, making it 2-0.

Arthur Rhodes shut the Angels down 1-2-3 in the ninth for his third save.

Sele took the hard-luck loss, dropping to 3-5.

Ichiro Suzuki led the Mariners' seven-hit attack with two hits on the day. He was the only Seattle player with more than one.

Angels first baseman Brad Fullmer led the team with two of their five hits.

Game Notes:

Doing the Impossible: The Mariners eighth inning run off of Angels' reliever Brendon Donnelly was only the second earned run Donnelly had given up all season in 35.2 innings of work. It caused his ERA "raise" to 0.50.

Say it ain't so: Kazuhiro Sasaki, placed on the disabled list last week with what was diagnosed as bruised ribs, will be out longer than first believed. Further tests showed fractures in two ribs, which will sideline him an additional two weeks. Arthur Rhodes and Jeff Nelson will continue share the closer role in Sasaki's absence.

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