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Seattle Mariners

Big Unit throws first pitch, but Mariners lose home opener

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Twelve years after pitching for the Mariners, recently retired Randy Johnson returned to Safeco field to throw out the first pitch in Seattle's home opener against Oakland on Monday. His return to Seattle was spoiled by Cliff Pennington and Gabe Cross, who led the As to a 4-0 win.

Justin Duchscherer pitched brilliantly for the Athletics, going as far as the eight inning and allowing just two hits. He walked two. The right-hander and two-time All-Star missed last season because of an elbow injury and was later treated for clinical depression.

Ryan Rowland-Smith played adequately for the Mariners, allowing three hits in seven innings. He did, however, walked five and allowed four runs.

Johnson, now 46-years-old, received a warm welcome by Seattle's fans. The 6-10 left-hander pitched in the major leagues for 22 seasons and won five Cy Young Awards. He became the 18th pitcher since 1901 to win 300 games, finishing his career with 303 wins.

With Monday's loss, the Mariners fell to 2-6 so far this season. It is their worst start since beginning 1-4 in 2004.

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