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Buhner, Not Griffey, Powers the Mariners

September 22, 1997|From Associated Press

OAKLAND — Jay Buhner homered twice and Ken Griffey Jr. had two RBIs but went homerless in five plate appearances as the Seattle Mariners defeated the Oakland Athletics, 9-2, Sunday to reduce their magic number for eliminating the Angels and clinching the American League West to two.

Griffey had a sacrifice fly in the third and a run-scoring single in the fourth to increase his major league-leading total to 143 RBIs.

Griffey, with 53 home runs, has six games left to match Roger Maris' mark of 61 set in 1961. Griffey trails Mark McGwire of the St. Louis Cardinals, who went hitless Sunday, by one homer in the race for the major league lead.

Griffey flied out to short left in the first, hit the sacrifice fly to right in the third, had the RBI single to right in the fourth, flied out to the warning track in center in the sixth and took a called third strike in the eighth. His shot to center in the sixth inning went about 395 feet.

"I just hit it up high. I just hit it straight up instead of out," said Griffey, who stole his 15th base of the season as part of a double steal in the fourth.

Buhner hit his 38th and 39th homers and Dan Wilson went four for five with a homer.

Buhner, who has hit 27 of his 39 homers on the road, is seeking to become only the 10th player in major league history with 40 homers in three consecutive years.



WHO: Seattle Mariners

WHERE: at Seattle

WHEN: Tuesday, 7 p.m.

Wednesday, 7:30 p.m.

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