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Evan White's three-run homer backs pitcher Marco Gonzales as Seattle gains a game on Houston

GONZALESThe Seattle Mariners are making it interesting in the American League playoff chase.

The Mariners, led by Evan White's three-run homer and Marco Gonzales' eight innings of shutout ball, beat Houston 6-1 Monday at T-Mobile Park.

The Mariners (24-30) gained a game on the Astros (27-27) in the chase for the second-place American League West Division playoff spot. Seattle, and other teams, also trail Cleveland and Toronto in the race for the American League wild-card berths.

There are six games to play — two more against Houston, and four against division champ Oakland. It would be quite an accomplishment for the rebuilding Mariners to make their way into the expanded A.L. playoffs; by being in contention after 54 games of the 60-game season is already an accomplishment.

Gonzales scattered seven hits and struck out six and walked one in improving to 7-2 with a 3.06 ERA.

With Lance McCullers also pitching well, the game was scoreless through seven innings.

An error preceded Ty France's RBI double and White's three-run homer; McCullers gave up the four runs, but none were earned. He allowed three hits and struck out seven and walked two in 6 2/3 innings.

Kyle Seager added a two-run single in the next inning.

The teams play again at 6:10 p.m. Tuesday. Ljay Newsome takes the mound for Seattle opposite Framber Valdez.


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