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James Paxton Earns Seventh Straight Win As Mariners Beat Royals

Jack Zduriencik is rolling in his retirement community softball commissioner’s chair. Despite his efforts to trade away everything important to the Mariners during his tenure as GM (Cliff Lee, J.J. Putz, John Jaso, not to mention signing Chone Figgins), the Mariners are now OVER .500 EVERYONE. Yeah, I know, it’s not the first time this season, but things are better than they’ve been in the last 16 non-playoff years in Seattle.

James Paxton went out and earned his seventh straight win tonight and showed why he has earned his own private cheering section. Safeco Field now features a section knows as the “Maple Grove,” complete with their own maple tree, paying homage to the Canadian lefty’s heritage and massive maple leaf tattoo on his right arm.

“They fouled off a lot more balls and scraped some hits together,” Paxton told the Associated Press. “I had a couple of wild pitches there that hurt us. That stuff happens.”

I think we’ll forgive you, James. He didn’t allow a hit until the fifth inning, and the Mariners offense (yes, they have an offense now) provided the run support to earn the win.

“An outstanding come-from-behind win,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “Both starters were throwing the ball very well. I didn’t think there’d be a lot of runs scored, but we were able to put some pressure on them and mount an inning and put a crooked number up there, which was great. Paxton continues to really dominate when he’s out there. I thought the first time through the lineup he was right on everything.

Right on he was, Scott. With that win the Mariners are now only 1.5 games behind the Royals in the Wild Card, and yes, we’re starting to mention the playoffs. It’s August, people.

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