SEATTLE | Even Charlie Blackmon staying hot at the plate was upstaged on this night by a foursome of Colorado Rockies pitchers, led by the debut of rookie Ryan Castellani.
Blackmon added three more hits to his major league-leading total and drove in three runs, and four Rockies pitchers combined to one-hit the Seattle Mariners in a 5-0 win on Saturday night.
Colorado won for the seventh time in eight games to keep rolling atop the NL West, and Blackmon wasn’t the only star. The Rockies were thrilled with Castellani’s debut.
“The thing that was impressive to me was just his mound presence,” Colorado manager Bud Black said. “His poise. He looked under control delivery wise, he didn’t over throw the ball. … There was just so many positives tonight for Ryan that you really like to see that in the guys first game. It was really cool stuff.”
Castellani began with four perfect innings. He was pulled after a hit batter and walk to open the fifth. Castellani struck out three and threw 60 pitches.
Reliever Jeff Hoffman kept the no-hitter going until J.P. Crawford lined a single to center field with two outs in the sixth inning for the Mariners’ lone hit.
Hoffman (2-0) threw three innings before Yency Almonte pitched a perfect eighth and Phillip Diehl closed out the ninth.
Castellani said Diehl was his throwing partner through baseball’s shutdown and found it fitting the lefty closed out his first start.
“Huge relief getting it over with. I still can’t believe it’s real right now,” Castellani said. “First off, just super happy we won. I mean, I couldn’t have pictured it any better in my head.”
Blackmon doubled twice, the second hitting the top of the wall in right field and barely missing a grand slam. Blackmon settled for a bases-clearing double to give Colorado a 3-0 lead. Blackmon has 25 hits in 14 games and raised his batting average to .446.
“He might hit .400 or .500 this year,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “He’s a really tough out. Hangs in on lefties, very aggressive when he gets his pitch in his zone and he’s a tough guy to put away.”
Daniel Murphy and Trevor Story also had RBI singles for Colorado.
Castellani relied heavily on his fastball and spotted a good changeup and breaking pitches when needed.
Castellani’s perfect streak ended when he hit Kyle Seager leading off the fifth. Daniel Vogelbach walked and Colorado manager Bud Black didn’t hesitate pulling Castellani.
Hoffman got out of the only jam the Rockies faced with a double play and grounder back to the mound.
“In the clubhouse just getting the beer shower was just awesome, all of it,” Castellani said. “I’m never going to forget it.”
Seattle’s Nick Margevicius threw 3 1/3 scoreless innings in his first start since sliding into the Mariners rotation. Margevicius was pulled after 61 pitches, giving way to Seattle’s shaky bullpen.
Anthony Misiewicz (0-1) gave up two runs in one inning.
MAKE IT A DOZEN
Blackmon extended his hitting streak to 12 games, lining a double to cap a 10-pitch at-bat in the first inning. Blackmon was hitless in his first nine at-bats of the season. Since then, he’s 25 of 47, a .532 average.
Seattle C Austin Nola was out of the lineup on Saturday after getting crossed up on a pitch from Yohan Ramirez late in Friday’s loss that hit him on the wrist. X-rays were negative, but manager Scott Servais said the wrist was swollen. The hope is Nola can return to the lineup on Sunday. Nola had a homer and double prior to getting hit.
Mariners: RHP Kendall Graveman will see a specialist early next week to determine what procedure to have after suffering a neck strain in his last start. Servais said whatever the treatment it will be a significant amount of time that Graveman is out of the rotation.
Rockies: RHP German Marquez (2-1, 1.54) makes his fourth start and third against an AL west team. Marquez has allowed three earned runs in 13 1/3 innings over his past two starts, both victories.
Mariners: LHP Justus Sheffield (0-2, 9.39) makes his third start. Sheffield has not made it through five innings in either of his starts. Sheffield allowed just four hits but gave up four runs in his last start against Oakland.