Moyer set a club record with his 21st victory as the Mariners
completed a series sweep over the AL West champion Oakland
Athletics with a 9-3 win Sunday."You know, knock on wood, I felt like I had a pretty darn good
healthwise year," the soft-throwing, 40-year-old left-hander said.
"At this point in my career, that's big."Moyer (21-7), an All-Star for the first time this season,
pitched six innings and gave up three runs -- two earned -- on seven
hits and two walks with three strikeouts."I had my health and I know what it's like not to have it,"
Moyer said. "When injuries start, they just nag and nag and nag
whether it's 40-year-olds, 30-year-olds or 20-year-olds and it's
just not fun."Seattle manager Bob Melvin thinks Moyer can still be just as
good at 41 next season."It seems like he's getting better," Melvin said. "Obviously,
he's very serious about what he does and I don't see him slowing
down."Edgar Martinez, the Mariners' designated hitter and a seven-time
All-Star, played what might have been his final game with Seattle.
He went 1-for-5 and received a standing ovation before each of his
at-bats.Martinez, 40, said he'd decide after the season if he'll retire.
He's eligible to become a free agent after the World Series.After the game, Martinez said he thinks it's important for him
to believe the Mariners are trying to win a World Series. In July,
Martinez said he thought the team should make a major deal before
the trading deadline, but the Mariners didn't do it."Honestly, coming back to a team that has a really good chance
to win and go for a championship has a lot to do with me coming
back," Martinez said. "I don't know how I would handle it if we
were losing and losing like we did in the past."At my stage, that would be really hard. You need adrenaline,
you know, when you get older. You have to find it somewhere."The A's, who'll open their AL division series against Boston on
Wednesday night in Oakland, were outscored 25-10 and outhit 39-22
in the series.Oakland manager Ken Macha went with his regular lineup, but
started removing his starters in the sixth when the Mariners were
ahead 9-2. Macha pulled starting pitcher Ted Lilly, who'll pitch
Game 3 of the Boston series Saturday at Fenway Park, after four
innings.Macha wasn't bothered by being swept by the Mariners."I'm not concerned about us losing here whatsoever," he said.
"We had good effort and like I said, `The season starts
Wednesday."Oakland's Eric Chavez had a different take on the Seattle series
than Macha, though."Thank God we didn't have to come in here and win any ballgames
because I don't think we would have done that," Chavez said.The Mariners won 93 games for the second season in a row and
finished three games behind the A's, who had 96 wins. Seattle won
the season series from Oakland 12-7.Bret Boone and Dan Wilson each hit two-run homers for the
Mariners, who trailed 2-0 after two innings.Lilly (12-10), who shut out Seattle 12-0 last Sunday in Oakland,
gave up Boone's 35th homer of the season in the third to tie it at
2. Seattle's first two runs broke Lilly's scoreless innings streak
at 22 innings.In the fourth, the Mariners scored three runs to take a 5-2
lead. Mark McLemore put Seattle ahead to stay at 3-2 with an RBI
single, Wilson drove in a run on a fielder's choice and Carlos
Guillen hit a run-scoring single.In four innings, Lilly allowed five runs on eight hits and a
walk, with two strikeouts."I tried every trick I had up my sleeve today," Lilly said.
"I just was not effective. I wasn't getting the ball in."The Mariners broke it open with four runs off Chad Harville in
the fifth. McLemore had an RBI groundout, and another run scored on
first baseman Scott Hatteberg's throwing error on the play. Wilson
followed with his two-run homer.Hatteberg gave the A's a 2-0 with a two-run homer in the second.
Moyer hit Eric Byrnes with a pitch with the bases loaded in the
sixth for Oakland's third run, which was unearned because the
Mariners committed two errors in the inning.
Martinez received a standing ovation when he left the game
for a pinch-runner after hitting into a fielder's choice in the
eighth. He waved his batting helmet and then went into the dugout,
where he hugged his teammates before coming to the top of the
dugout steps and waving his batting helmet to the crowd again. ...
Moyer, signed by the Mariners for two more seasons, had a
career-best ERA of 3.27, sixth-best in the AL. ... Boone's 35
homers were two shy of his career high set in 2001 and ranked
eighth in the league this season. He had a team-leading 117 RBI,
second best in his career to the 141 he had two years ago. ... The
only other 20-game winner in Mariners history was Randy Johnson,
who went 20-4 in 1997.