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Old Friend Franklin Gutierrez Drives In Only Run As Mariners Prevail Over Quiet Indians

Seattle, WA (Sports Network) – Luke French carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning and Franklin Gutierrez drove in the only run as Seattle blanked Cleveland in a 1-0 final at Safeco Field.

French (4-4) allowed just the one hit — a Shelley Duncan single with one out in the seventh — and produced a second straight winning turn on the hill, having pitched seven innings of three-hit ball his last time out in a 2-1 win against the Twins. The lefty struck out four and walked three Friday.

“It was one of those nights where I was hitting my spots more often than not, to be able to slow them down with the changeup, mix in a few sliders here and there. Turned out pretty good,” said French.

Seattle had just four hits but Gutierrez’s first-inning RBI single proved to be enough for the win, evening the four-game series at a game apiece and snapping a six-game home skid to the Tribe.

Fausto Carmona (11-14) hurled his third complete game of the year and sixth of his career in the loss. The right-hander struck out six, walked five and allowed four hits along with the all-important run. He was backed by just three hits in the loss, Cleveland’s fifth in six games.

Ichiro Suzuki started off the Seattle first with an infield hit and Chone Figgins walked to move the runner up. Gutierrez slapped a single back into center field for the 1-0 lead.

French was dealing heading into the seventh, but stumbled with a walk to Shin- Soo Choo and Duncan broke up the no-no with a base hit into center field. French bounced back and got Jayson Nix to line into a double play to preserve the 1-0 lead.

“I don’t think we had that feeling that we were going to get no-hit. He was making a lot of real good pitches. Our timing was getting on him more and more as the game went on and we were taking better at-bats, so I don’t think we had that feeling,” Duncan said.

Brandon League induced an inning-ending double-play ball from Jason Donald in the eighth before David Aardsma ran into some trouble in the ninth. Consecutive singles by Michael Brantley and Asdrubal Cabrera put two on with one out. Choo fouled out but a wild pitch moved the potential winning run to second. Duncan struck out to end the game, handing Aardsma his 27th save.

French threw 99 pitches, 64 for strikes…Carmona has dropped six straight starts…Gutierrez stole his 20th base of the year, giving the Mariners three players with 20 steals for the first time since 2001…Both teams failed to record an extra-base hit.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.