Mariners' relief work has been outstanding

Mariners' relief work has been outstanding

SEATTLE -- When Mariners reliever Charlie Furbush allowed a go-ahead single from Yankees center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury in the eighth inning of Tuesday's loss, it marked one of the few times this season the Mariners' bullpen faltered.

How good has it been?

In 24 games prior to Wednesday's game against New York, the bullpen had a 1.17 ERA, allowing just eight runs in 61 1/3 innings. Going into the game, it ranked second in the AL with a 2.72 ERA, which puts it on pace to surpass the 2001 Mariners, whose bullpen posted a club-record 3.04 ERA and helped the team tie a Major League record with 116 regular-season wins.

"Our bullpen has been outstanding. But I think it's a combination of good starting pitching, too," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. "We've been stretched a few times, but in our last 10-12 games, our starters have been pretty darn good at taking us deep into ballgames, which makes your bullpen even better."

Adam Lewis is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.