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Manager fastest to reach mark in club history

4/28/2004

BALTIMORE (AP) -- Bob Melvin isn't much for souvenir collecting,
yet he was delighted to pocket a keepsake from his 100th victory as
a major league manager.

Maybe it's because he had to wait nearly a week to get it.

Dan Wilson homered in the fourth inning and drove in the
tiebreaking run in the seventh, and the Seattle Mariners snapped a
five-game losing streak by beating the Baltimore Orioles 7-5
Tuesday night.

Melvin improved to 100-82 since taking over as manager of the
Mariners last year. Even though he was stuck on 99 wins for six
days, no one in franchise history has reached the 100-win mark
quicker.

"Ah, those big round numbers. I don't have a shrine at home
with a bunch of different things. I don't even know where my first
hit ball is," he said. "But I do have my first win ball, from
last year at Oakland, and this is 100, so I'll keep this one,
too."

John Olerud had three of Seattle's 13 hits, and the Mariners
improved to 1-11 when allowing five or more runs in a game. The
marathon featured 375 pitches and lasted 3 hours, 46 minutes, but
no one in the Seattle clubhouse was complaining.

"Every win is big, but it just feels good to come away from
this game with a win," Wilson said. "We battled, we fought, we
scratched and clawed, and to come away from that one with a win
feels good."

Rafael Palmeiro and Larry Bigbie homered, and Brian Roberts had
three hits for the Orioles, who have lost a season-high three
straight.

Baltimore rallied from a 5-2 deficit, but had nothing left after
pulling even in the sixth.

"There are just so many times you can come back," manager Lee
Mazzilli said. "We kept fighting, but came up short."

With the score 5-all in the seventh, Rich Aurilia drew a two-out
walk from Rodrigo Lopez (1-1). Buddy Groom then gave up a single to
Olerud, and Wilson followed with an RBI single off Mike DeJean.
Jolbert Cabrera made it 7-5 with a single up the middle.

Ron Villone (2-0) pitched 1 2-3 innings and Eddie Guardado, the
sixth Seattle pitcher, got four outs for his third save. He retired
Javy Lopez in the eighth with the bases loaded and two outs.

Seattle starter Gil Meche labored through three innings in which
he gave up two runs and four hits and walked three. He threw 87
pitches.

But he was better than Orioles starter Matt Riley, who allowed
nine hits -- eight in a stretch of nine batters -- before being
yanked in the fourth.

"I've got to make some adjustments," Riley said. "It's
definitely mechanical. I'm falling off the mound, not following
through on my pitches. It's terrible."

The Mariners scored four in the fourth to go up 5-2. After
Wilson hit a leadoff homer, Cabrera doubled and Ichiro Suzuki hit
an RBI single. Scott Spiezio then chased Riley with a single, and
Suzuki scored on a passed ball before Edgar Martinez hit a
run-scoring groundout.

Miguel Tejada hit a bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the bottom
half, but Melvin Mora was thrown out at second on the play to end
the inning.

"That will be addressed," Mazzilli said, tersely.

Mora made amends in the sixth. After Bigbie hit a solo homer,
Roberts doubled and Mora singled in a run to tie the game for the
last time.

The Orioles opened the scoring in the first when Meche walked
Jay Gibbons with the bases loaded to force in a run.

Seattle drew even in the third when Raul Ibanez hit an RBI
single, but the tie lasted only until Palmeiro connected on Meche's
first pitch in the bottom half. It was his third homer of the year
and 49th of his career against the Mariners, the most against any
team.

Game notes
Seattle improved to 2-8 when scoring at least five runs.
... After the start of the game was delayed by rain for 29 minutes,
Riley failed to throw a strike until his seventh pitch. ... No one
has hit more homers against the Mariners than Palmeiro.