Gomes, Weeks homer in win over Mariners
March 4, 2012
PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) – Jonny Gomes and Jemile Weeks hit two-run homers to help the Oakland Athletics’ backups beat up the Seattle Mariners’ regulars.
Gomes connected in the third off Kevin Millwood, Weeks homered in the fifth against Hong-Chih Kuo and the Athletics had 16 hits in their 9-2 exhibition victory Saturday.
“We talk a lot about these guys really wanting to be part of their new teams,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said about Gomes. “When you do have a nice day, it makes you feel closer to everybody.
Gomes signed as a free agent in January after spending last season with Cincinnati and Washington. The outfielder figures to platoon at designated hitter until Manny Ramirez returns from his 50-game suspension,
Carlos Peguero homered for the second straight day for Seattle.
On Friday, Seattle’s backups hit five home runs in an 8-5 win over a top Oakland lineup in the spring opener for both teams. The Mariners and Athletics will open the major league season on March 28 with a two-game series in Tokyo.
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Mariners starter Hector Noesi, acquired with catcher Jesus Montero from the New York Yankees for pitcher Michael Pineda, struck out two and walked two in two hitless innings.
“Stuff looked good,” A’s manager Eric Wedge said. “He has some presence out there about him as well.”
Montero was out of the lineup, a day after he was hit in the jaw by two foul balls. He ran sprints on a side field during the game Saturday.
The Mariners’ new-look top of the order featuring Chone Figgins, Dustin Ackley and Ichiro Suzuki went hitless in seven combined at-bats. Ackley stole a base and scored after walking in the first inning.
The Mariners were without center fielder Franklin Gutierrez. Expected to be sidelined four to six weeks, he returned to the club Saturday after partially tearing his right pectoral muscle Tuesday and going back to Seattle for medical tests.
Right-hander Jarrod Parker, acquired from Arizona in the offseason, pitched two impressive innings in his A’s spring debut, striking out four.
“It was good to get back in or that second inning,” said Parker, who replaced starter Tyson Ross after one inning and struck out Suzuki as one of his four strikeouts.
“Good to get back up and see how it felt.”
Notes: The A’s will hold a news conference to introduce Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes on Sunday morning. Cespedes signed a four-year contract. “Not going to stick him in a game until we feel like he’s ready,” Melvin said Saturday. … Former Mariners manager John McLaren attended the game. McLaren, who managed in Seattle in 2007 and 2008, is scouting and working with China’s national baseball program. … Before the game, the crowd observed a moment of silence for longtime Mariners scout Frank Mattox and former outfielder Greg Halman. Mattox died last week, and Halman died late last year.