School was back in session Tuesday afternoon at Safeco Field, as the Seattle Mariners welcomed in the Anaheim Angels for the much-anticipated 2004 season-opener.
Unfortunately for the Mariners, it was the Angels that did most of the teaching as Anaheim belted three homers off of Seattle starter Jamie Moyer en route to a 10-5 win.
Seattle was down by as much a 10-1 before responding with a mini four-run rally in the eighth inning to make the final score look a bit more respectable.
Troy Glaus, who suffered through a down year in 2003 plagued with injuries, started the season in style with two of the Angels' three homers on the day, both towering blasts over the centerfield wall.
Catcher Jose Molina hit the other, a second-inning shot into the Angels bullpen to make it 1-0, his first long-ball since 2001.
The M's knotted up the game in the bottom of the second on a RBI bloop double by Willie Bloomquist, who started at third base with Scott Spiezio on the disabled list, scoring John Olerud from second base.
Given the opportunity to add more runs with runners at second and third and just one out in the inning, Angels' starter Bartolo Colon showed why he was the No. 1 pitcher on the free agent market this offseason. He got Ichiro Suzuki to ground out weakly, then struck out Randy Winn on a 3-2 pitch to end the threat.
Glaus' first home run of the day came in the fourth inning, estimated at 412 feet. And with the game still close two innings later, Glaus widened the Angels' lead with a three-run bomb to make it a 5-1 game. By the time the inning had ended, Anaheim tacked on another run for a five-run lead.
Moyer (0-1) allowed eight hits and six earned runs in 5.2 innings of work before being replaced by Julio Mateo.
The Angels added to their lead in the eighth, getting three more runs off of mop-up man Kevin Jarvis and another off of lefty Ron Villone.
Seattle mounted it's comeback in the eighth off of Scot Shields, scoring two of its four runs on a gap-double by new shortstop Rich Aurilia. But Francisco Rodriguez came in to get the final out of the eighth, then retired the M's quietly in the ninth to close the door.
Colon (1-0) lasted six innings and surrendered just the one unearned run, while striking out five without a walk. His fastball topped out at 98 mph, a welcome sign to Angels' fans for the season ahead.
No Mariner had more than one hit.
The Mariners will look to even the series on Wednesday when Joel Pineiro takes the mound against Jerrod Washburn. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.
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