Jon Lester allowed one hit in seven shutout innings and the Chicago Cubs hit three home runs to defeat the host Seattle Mariners 11-0 Wednesday afternoon.
Willson Contreras, Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez hit solo shots for the Cubs, who won their fourth consecutive game.
The only hit Lester (2-1), a native of Tacoma, Washington, allowed was a one-out single to Ryon Healy in the second inning. The left-hander walked one batter and struck out eight.
The Mariners have lost four in a row, all at home, with three of those defeats coming by 11 or more runs. They’ve been outscored 46-7 over that stretch.
Mariners starter Marco Gonzales (5-1), who entered the game tied for the major-league lead in victories, lasted just 1 2/3 innings. The left-hander allowed six runs (three earned) on five hits, with three walks and two strikeouts.
Baez hit the first pitch of the second over the wall in right-center field, sparking a six-run inning.
The M’s promoted RHP Logan Gilbert, their first-round draft pick last year, from low-A West Virginia to high-A Modesto. In four starts for the Power, Gilbert was 1-0 with a 1.59 ERA. In 22 ⅔ innings, he struck out 36 and walked four and South Atlantic League opponents hit .118 against him.
By the numbers
9.75: Average number of runs the M’s have lost by during their four-game skid. The lost 15-1 and 14-1 over the weekend against Texas, before suffering 6-5 and 11-0 defeats to the Cubs.
Our take from right field
That 13-2 start to the season by the M’s seems like such a distant memory. This is more like the team everyone expected to see this season. Again, a dropped fly ball proved costly, as three of the Cubs’ six runs in the second inning were unearned.
The Mariners have a much-needed day off before starting a three-game series Friday in Cleveland. LHP Yusei Kikuchi (1-1, 4.54 ERA) is scheduled to face Indians RHP Shane Bieber (2-1, 3.68) in the opener.
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