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Not only was it Canada Day with The Big Maple Authentic Danny Shelton Jersey , Canadian James Paxton on the mound for the Mariners 1-0 victory over the Royals, it also was Paxton Bobblehead Day at Safeco Field.
This bobblehead included a bald eagle on his shoulder, a crazy moment that actually happened while working out in the outfield before a game this season in Minnesota. The video went viral.
Paxton allowed only two hits and struck out 11 in eight innings to lead the Mariners to their season-best seventh consecutive victory.
Paxton enjoyed the moment, Seattle manager Scott Servais said. It was National Pax Day. A holiday in Canada, the bobblehead and the fans were really into it.
Paxton (8-2) had plenty of family and friends at the game from his hometown of Ladner, British Columbia.
It was cool to pitch on Canada Day and have the bobblehead, Paxton said. It felt good today. The fastball, curveball and cutter all were working.
Edwin Diaz struck out the side in the ninth for his 32nd save. The Mariners are 26-11 in one-run games this season and 22-0 when Diaz enters the game with a one-run lead.
As far as being valuable to our team, he has to be the top of the list, Servais said about Diaz. He isnt just getting it done, its also the efficiency of how hes getting it done. When his timing is right, hes really tough to hit.
Kansas City rookie Brad Keller (2-3) also was tough to hit. He allowed six hits in eight innings. The only extra-base hit he allowed was a double by Kyle Seager in the seventh inning.
Hes doing everything you want a starting pitcher to do, Royals manager Ned Yost said. Complete game. He was fantastic. Hes out there attacking with his fastball Authentic Jason McCourty Jersey , slider, throwing strikes and really commanding his pitch count.
It was the first complete game of Kellers career.
After the game a few guys came up and said congratulations, Keller said. Ive never had one before and its pretty cool, but its frustrating (taking the loss). Thats tough lineup. A lot of good hitters over there. I tried to stay on the attack and not fall behind too much.
The only run came in the second inning. Ben Gamel dropped a broken-bat single into shallow center to score Seager from second base. Seager singled to right before Ryon Healy singled to center.
Thats all Paxton needed, recording double-figure strikeouts for the seventh time this season. On his 110th pitch, his last of the game to close out the top of the eighth, his fastball was clocked at 99 mph.
Late in the game he just dialed it up, Servais said. Pax emptied the tank and let it rip. He had an overpowering fastball at the end. Its pretty rare. There are only five to 10 guys in baseball who can do that and were lucky to have one of them.
Royals: RHP Ian Kennedy, who experienced tightness on his left side during his start Friday, had his normal throwing day in the bullpen Sunday, but Kansas City manager Ned Yost did not say whether Kennedy would make his next scheduled start. Yost said RF Jorge Soler (fractured toe and placed in the 10-day DL June 17) is still on a six-weeks-or-so recovery, so its likely another four weeks before he would return.
Mariners: Manager Scott Servais said they will monitor RHP Felix Hernandez and his back stiffness over the next few days. Hernandez pitched five innings Saturday night and earned the victory (three runs and six hits) but struggled with back pain and wasnt able to sit down in the dugout between innings. Well keep an eye on it, Servais said. We have the off day (Monday) so hell get an extra-day off between starts. Servais said he was hopeful RHP Hisashi Iwakuma Authentic Trent Brown Jersey , who underwent shoulder surgery last September, would be back by now, but Iwakumas throwing was shut down again last week. Hes frustrated by that, Servais said. The doctors still are optimistic hell get back (this season) but I dont have any timetable for it.
Royals: RHP Jakob Junis (5-9, 4.67) will make his 17th starts of the season Monday when the Royals return home to start a three-game series with Cleveland. Junis has allowed a major league-high 22 home runs over 96.1 innings.
Mariners: LHP Wade LeBlanc (3-0, 3.38) will make his 12th starts of the season Tuesday when Seattle starts a three-game series at home against the Angels. LeBlanc hasnt lost a decision in his 11 starts and the Mariners are 8-3 in those games.
Its the time of year when World Cup skiers get worn down with flu, fever and general fatigue and all of the protagonists in Tuesdays giant slalom were affected by it in one way or another.
Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany returned from two weeks in bed to claim her third win of the season while overall World Cup leader Mikaela Shiffrin cited fatigue as a factor after an uncharacteristic fall in the first run
Its Day 7 on snow in a row and Day 11 or 12 on snow with only one day off, Shiffrin told The Associated Press. So its a lot. Its definitely a point in the season where fatigue is starting to build up.
Sitting third after the opening leg, Rebensburg had the fastest second run to finish 0.03 seconds ahead of first-run leader Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway amid perfect conditions at the Kronplatz resort.
After this period when I was lying at home on my couch watching other girls ripping it wasnt easy to stay patient, Rebensburg said. But now Im 100 percent healthy.
Mowinckel was 0.21 ahead of Rebensburg at the final checkpoint but lost speed through the final gates. Still, it was the Norwegians best career result and she celebrated as if she had won.
Defending champion Federica Brignone of Italy finished third, 0.66 behind, despite a fever that kept her out of Sundays super-G in Cortina dAmpezzo.
In between runs I was almost asleep Authentic Tre\'Quan Smith Jersey , Brignone said. But I tried not to think Ive been sick the last few days and lying in bed all day long. I tried to give everything in front of my people.
Shiffrin lost control of her inside ski coming around a turn as she entered the toughest section of a slope named Erta, which translates as steep. With a gradient of 61 percent in that section, Shiffrin slid a long way down the course but immediately got up and was not injured.
I got on my inside ski going over that breakover and it was the one turn that I knew like, `Have some direction, it gets really steep after this. Its a short breakover. And you just want to make sure youre on point on this turn, Shiffrin said. And I was going into it really aggressive but fine.
It happens, Shiffrin added. One of the things Ive been working on the most is putting the pressure on my outside ski so I dont boot out like I did.
After missing a gate on Sunday in the Cortina super-G, it marked the first time in more than six years that Shiffrin failed to finish two consecutive races. The last time came in back-to-back slaloms in Courchevel, France, and Flachau, Austria, in December 2011 before the American registered her first World Cup podium.
It was the 16th career World Cup win for Rebensburg, who also won the giant slalom at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Rebensburgs other wins this season came in the season opener in Soelden Drew Doughty Jersey , Austria, in October and then in Killington, Vermont, in November.
Marta Bassino of Italy finished fourth and Sara Hector of Sweden was fifth.
Shiffrin still holds a massive 843-point lead over Rebensburg in the overall standings. In the GS rankings, Rebensburg moved 37 points ahead of Shiffrin.
Thats how it goes when youre pushing the limits, Shiffrin said. Ive been exploring that mentality of pushing my limit. I like to step in the race course to know that my skiing is good enough that I could ski at 90 percent but its more fun when Im really hammering.
And with GS theres a lot of really awesome competition, Shiffrin added. When I watch these girls I know theyre not holding back.
Shiffrin had been undefeated this year in the technical disciplines of GS, slalom and parallel slalom with five straight wins.
She has two more technical races in Lenzerheide, Switzerland, next weekend before she travels to South Korea for the Pyeonghchang Olympics.
This story has been corrected to show that Shiffrin has failed to finish two consecutive races before.
More AP Olympic coverage:
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