Ichiro saves day for Seattle

Seattle Mariners' Ichiro Suzuki holds up the ball after catching a foul ball hit by Kansas City Royals' John Buck as first base umpire Mike Estabrook, left, makes the call while Russell Branyan looks on in the ninth inning of a baseball game Tuesday in Kansas City, Mo. Suzuki's catch ended the game, giving the Mariners a 7-6 win.<BR><I>AP photo </I>

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Ichiro Suzuki homered on the second pitch of the game then ended it with a great sliding catch as the Seattle Mariners outlasted Kansas City 7-6 on Tuesday night, snapping a five-game losing streak against the Royals.

Kansas City loaded the bases with two outs against Seattle closer David Aardsma with two singles and a walk. John Buck lifted a high fly ball to right and Suzuki went into a feet-first slide to make the game-ending catch in foul territory. Aardsma earned his 26th save in 28 opportunities.

Russell Branyan's RBI single off Ron Mahay put Seattle on top 7-6 in the seventh. No. 9 hitter Michael Saunders had three hits for the Mariners, who beat Kansas City for the first time since July 13, 2008.

Shawn Kelley (3-1) got the win with two innings of one-run relief. The loss went to Jamey Wright (1-4), who gave up two hits and one run while pitching one inning plus one batter.

Suzuki's major league-leading average stayed at .364 as he went 2 for 5, reached base four times and scored three runs.

The only Mariner starter without a hit was third baseman Adrian Beltre. Making his first appearance since going on the disabled list on June 29, Beltre was 0 for 5 with three strikeouts and had a throwing error that led to an unearned run.

Billy Butler, Brayan Pena, Alex Gordon and Yuniesky Betancourt all had two hits for the Royals.

Kansas City went ahead 2-1 in the bottom of the first on Butler's RBI double and Alberto Callaspo's sacrifice fly.

The Mariners tied 3-all in the third on Jose Lopez's two-run double and Ken Griffey Jr.'s run-scoring single.

Bench coach John Gibbons managed the Royals for the second straight game while Trey Hillman was at home in Dallas attending to what the club said was a family matter. He was expected back Wednesday.

Betancourt, playing against Seattle for the first time since being traded by the Mariners last month, had an RBI triple in the fourth and later scored.


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