The Seattle Mariners, led by Kevin Millwood, blanked the Los Angeles Dodgers 1-0 and shut them out in the hit column at Safeco Field Friday night.
Kevin Millwood (6IP, 1BB, 6K), Charlie Furbush (0.2IP, 1K), Stephen Pryor (0.1IP, 2BB, 1K, W), Lucas Luetge (0.1IP), Brandon League (0.2IP, 1K) and Tom Wilhelmsen (1IP, SV) teamed up for the first combined no-hitter in the majors since 2003.
Millwood went six innings with his only blemish being a walk to former Jay Juan Rivera to start the fifth inning. Rivera was later erased on a double play. As it turns out, Millwood had to leave the game with a groin injury. League, recently demoted from the closer's role for Seattle, got a clutch third out to end the eighth by striking out Tony Gwynn Jr. to strand runners at second and third. The recently recalled Pryor struck out a batter to end the seventh and earned the win. However, he walked a couple of hitters in the eighth and needed help from Luetge, a Rule 5 pick from Milwaukee, and League to wriggle off the hook. Wilhelmsen nailed it down for his third save of the season.
The Mariners front office can only be thrilled by Millwood's performance, save for the groin injury. Millwood, who improved his record to 3-5 with a 3.57 ERA and 1.39 WHIP, is boosting his trade value. Before a rough start last weekend against the White Sox in Chicago, Millwood has allowed one run or fewer in his four prior starts. He posted victories in the Bronx, Coors Field (a complete game, two-hit shutout) and at Safeco Field against Texas. He gave up just one earned run over five inning in a follow-up start in Arlington.
With prospects such as Danny Hultzen, Taijuan Walker and a former Jays draft pick knocking on the door, Millwood's days in Seattle may be numbered as the July 31 trading deadline approaches. His recent performances should attract some interest from contending teams unless the Mariners happen to get themselves back into the AL West race, being waged by the heavyweights of Texas and Anaheim. Whatever happens, the 37 year-old Millwood has given Mariners fans a nice memory from a Friday night in early June.