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Boone's power surge leads M's attack

6/29/2002

SEATTLE (AP) -- Joel Pineiro didn't want to come out before his
work was done.

Pineiro pitched a six-hitter to win his fourth straight start,
and Bret Boone hit a three-run homer as the Seattle Mariners beat
the Colorado Rockies 6-2 Friday night.

It was Pineiro's second complete game in his last four starts.
He beat St. Louis 5-0 at home June 12.

Mariners manager Lou Piniella came out to the mound in the ninth
after Pineiro walked Larry Walker and went to a 2-0 count on Todd
Zeile. As Piniella walked slowly to the mound, Pineiro kicked at
the dirt with disgust.

"He said, 'How are you feeling?''' Pineiro said. "I said,
'Lou, I want this. This is mine.'''

Piniella left Pineiro in the game and he got Zeile to hit into a
double play and then struck out Todd Hollandsworth to end it.

"I kind of thought he was going to take me out,'' Pineiro said.
"I didn't want to let him get the ball. I was a little mad at
myself, too.''

Piniella liked the way it turned out.

"I just wanted to make sure he was OK,'' he said. "He said he
felt good. I thought he had good stuff still. So did Danny (catcher
Dan Wilson).''

Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said Pineiro was a different
pitcher than the one he saw in Arizona in spring training.

"He obviously was a different animal,'' Hurdle said. "He was
lights out. It was a pretty solid performance from a good-looking
young arm.''

The AL West-leading Mariners stretched their winning streak to
four games with their 50th victory, while the Rockies dropped their
fourth in a row.

A year ago, when the Mariners tied the major league record with
116 wins, they won their 50th game June 14 at Colorado.

Boone's 10th homer of the season, an opposite-field shot to
right, came in the fifth inning off rookie Jason Jennings to break
a 2-2 tie. With two out, Edgar Martinez walked and Carlos Guillen
singled before Boone's homer.

Plate umpire Brian Gorman warned Rockies reliever Todd Jones and
both benches after Jones knocked down Boone with a head-high
fastball in the seventh. It was Jones' first pitch to Boone in
Boone's first at-bat after his homer.

Boone got up and responded with a single, went to third on Dan
Wilson's single and scored on a wild pitch by Jones.

"The umpire evidently thought so,'' Piniella said when asked if
he believed Jones was throwing at Boone on purpose. "And Boone
delivered the big blow tonight.''

Boone said he didn't think Jones would intentionally hit him in
the head.

"He's just not that type of guy,'' he said. "Maybe he had
orders to hit me from the dugout. I have no idea. I don't really
care, but I'll remember it.''

The crowd of 45,118 booed Jones after the pitch that hit Boone
in the back.

"It was pretty close, closer than I like,'' Boone said. "But
it happens.''

Both runs off Pineiro (8-3) came on homers. The Rockies got
Larry Walker's 17th of the season in the fourth and a 421-foot shot
to center from Benny Agbayani in the fifth to tie it at 2.

Martinez had an RBI double in the first for Seattle. The
Mariners scored their second run in the third when Jennings loaded
the bases on walks and Guillen hit into a fielder's choice for an
RBI.

Pineiro, who started the season in Seattle's bullpen, has moved
up to the team's No. 3 starter behind Freddy Garcia and Jamie
Moyer. Pineiro gave up one walk and struck out three.

"I felt good,'' he said. "I left a couple of pitches up and
they made me pay for it.''

Jennings (8-4) lost his second straight decision after winning
seven in a row. In 5 2-3 innings, he gave up five runs on seven
hits on a career-worst five walks.

"I was straddling on the fence all night long,'' Jennings said.
"There were times I was good and there were times I was rushing to
the plate.''

Game notes
At 50-29, the Mariners are a season-high 21 games over
.500. ... Seattle is 10-6 in interleague play in 2002. The Rockies
are 6-10. ... Walker, who has made 60 starts in right field this
season, made his fifth start at DH. ... The Rockies were without 1B
Todd Helton, who was out of the lineup because of a strained back.
Helton came out of Thursday night's 7-1 loss in Los Angeles in the
eighth inning. X-rays were negative. "They are treating it and
hopefully it will get down to where I can play with pain,'' he
said. "I'm all for that, but I've got to be able to swing the
bat.'' ... After missing four straight games because of back
spasms, Mark McLemore was back in the starting lineup in left field
for the Mariners. ... Jennings and Pineiro each have given up 10
homers this season. ... The Rockies began the game as the NL's No.
2 offensive team with a .272 batting average -- .317 at Coors Field
and .223 on the road.