Seattle Mariners calm, “not tripping” heading into Game 2 versus Astros

HOUSTON — A young team suffering a crushing defeat at the hands of the defending American League champions sounds like a recipe for disaster for the Seattle Mariners. However, those within the Mariners clubhouse insist that the Game 1 walkoff loss is in the past and their focus is on Thursday’s Game 2 and beyond.

Seattle Mariners ready to put walkoff loss to Houston Astros in the rearview mirror

The Seattle Mariners led throughout the entire game on Tuesday afternoon until the ninth inning when Yordan Alvarez put the exclamation point on a Houston rally with a three-run walkoff homer to give the Astros an 8-7 win and 1-0 advantage in the best-of-five series.

Seattle’s win probability in the game went from 91 percent to zero in one pitch, but the Mariners insist that one game will not define the rest of the series, no matter how big of a gut punch it was.

“We’re not really tripping,” said Seattle outfielder Jarred Kelenic said during Wednesday’s media session. “It’s baseball. Yeah, it sucks. But the good teams, they turn the page. It happens. Made a good swing and unfortunately we lost.

“But you look at the positives. Like we played an unbelievable baseball game from start to finish. That gives us confidence going into tomorrow for sure. That’s how we’re looking at it. Yeah, it sucks we lost, but we’re just as ready to go tomorrow as we were yesterday.”

Seattle manager Scott Servais agrees, noting that his team has been resilient this season, including doing what it took down the stretch to secure the franchise’s first postseason appearance since 2001.

“Our team, were we down yesterday? Yeah. If you’re going to find me a team that’s not down after that game, that’s a rough one, you know?” Servais said on Wednesday. “Talking to our guys afterward, we’re in here today getting some treatment, make sure we’re ready to go tomorrow.

“Our guys understand. We’ve lost some tough games before and we always bounce back. There’s no reason we won’t this time.”

One of the biggest reasons to think the Mariners have a reasonable chance to bounce back from Tuesday’s heartache is Luis Castillo taking the mound in Game 2. Since acquiring the right-hander in a trade with the Cincinnati Reds, Servais says his team has a certain advantage when Castillo pitches.

“There’s a certain something about certain pitchers in the game. I think Luis Castillo has that,” Servais said. “When he takes the mound I know how our team feels playing behind him. Like he’s a dude. Like his mannerisms on the mound. The other team knows it. The looks on the batters’ faces when they’re getting in the on-deck circle. Or they’re in the dugout and you look into the other dugout, like he’s got great stuff. And there’s no reason he can’t have a great outing for us tomorrow.”

First pitch is scheduled for 2:37 p.m. Houston time/12:37 p.m. Seattle time and will be televised on TBS.