SEATTLE (Reuters) — Mike Cameron and Edgar Martinez hit two-run homers and Jamie Moyer tossed six dominant innings as the Seattle Mariners beat the Cleveland Indians 5-1 on Thursday to tie their American League divisional playoff series at 1-1.
After a regular season in which they tied the 1906 Chicago Cubs’ major league record for wins (116), the Mariners were shut down by Cleveland’s Bartolo Colon in Game One of the best-of-five series.
Facing the prospect of falling 2-0 behind with the next two games in Cleveland, Seattle rocked Indians starter Chuck Finley (0-1) for four runs before he got an out.
Japanese rookie sensation Ichiro Suzuki, who walked just seven times in 192 at-bats against lefthanders during the regular season, drew a five-pitch walk to start the first inning.
Cameron, who was 1-for-17 lifetime against Finley, crushed an 0-2 pitch over the left-field wall for a 2-0 lead.
Bret Boone, who was 1-for-6 lifetime against Finley and 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in the series opener, grounded a single up the middle and Martinez, just 17-for-70 against Finley, lined the first pitch he saw over the wall in center field for a four-run cushion.
That was more than enough for the 38-year-old Moyer (1-0), who this season became the oldest pitcher in major league history to win 20 games for the first time.
The crafty lefthander allowed a run and five hits in his second career postseason start.
Moyer, who walked one and struck out four, also continued his recent domination of the Indians.
Despite entering the campaign with a 3-7 lifetime mark against Cleveland, Moyer was 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA in a pair of regular season starts against the Indians.
Moyer left with runners at first and second and none out in the seventh and Seattle ahead 5-0. Jeff Nelson came on and walked Travis Fryman but induced Marty Cordova to bounce into a double play and retired Einar Diaz on a lineout to center.
Arthur Rhodes struck out one in a perfect eighth before Kazuhiro Sasaki struck out two in the ninth.
Finley, who had beaten the Mariners 19 times in his career, was tagged for five runs and five hits in 4 1/3 innings. He walked two and struck out three in his first postseason start.
The veteran lefthander was appearing in the postseason for the first time since Game Six of the 1986 AL Championship Series.
David Bell’s solo homer in the fifth inning accounted for the Mariners’ other run.
Game Three is Saturday in Cleveland, with the Mariners sending 15-game winner Aaron Sele to the mound. The Indians counter with talented 21-year-old lefthander CC Sabathia, who won 17 games in his rookie season.