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Robinson Cano caps strong spring to help Mariners down Rockies

Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano hit .368 during spring play. (Associated Press)
Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano hit .368 during spring play. (Associated Press)
Mike Cranston Associated Press

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Robinson Cano hit an RBI double in his final at-bat of spring training and Nathan Karns was sharp over six innings as the Seattle Mariners beat the Colorado Rockies 8-5 on Saturday.

Cano went the opposite way off right-hander Jordan Lyles in the third to score Kyle Seager, who had walked. Cano left an inning later with a .368 average in exhibition play.

Nolan Arenado singled and scored and Ben Paulsen added an RBI double off Karns in the second inning. But the Mariners’ No. 5 starter didn’t allow another run and struck out eight.

“Got his curveball going in the third inning,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “That’s how he needs to pitch. He can’t just get locked in on the fastball.”

Arenado fanned on an off-speed pitch in his final at-bat against Karns. The All-Star third baseman closed the spring hitting an MLB-best .542 (32 for 59).

Lyles, who will start Colorado’s home opener Friday against San Diego, allowed one run and two hits over three innings.

Trainer’s room

Mariners outfielder Seth Smith (groin) sat out a second straight day as a precaution but is expected to play in Monday’s season opener. Center fielder Leonys Martin returned after a trip to Miami for the birth of his son.

Seager bats second

The lefty Seager batted second and walked twice. Servais said that’s where the third baseman will likely hit against right-handed pitchers.

Up next

The Mariners will hold a workout in Arlington, Texas, on Sunday. Ace Felix Hernandez then starts the season opener for the eighth straight year Monday against the Texas Rangers.

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