Joey Estes takes perfect game into 7th, Athletics beat Mariners 2-1

Oakland Athletics pitcher Joey Estes works against the Seattle Mariners during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif., Wednesday, June 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

By ERIC HE Associated Press

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Joey Estes took a perfect game into the seventh inning, Mason Miller had a five-out save and the Oakland Athletics beat the Seattle Mariners 2-1 on Wednesday night.

The A’s, who have dropped three straight series, can snap the skid with a victory Thursday. The Mariners had won eight of their last nine.

“The game that Joey threw out there was outstanding,” A’s manager Mark Kotsay said.

Kotsay said that watching the 22-year-old pitch reminded him of former A’s star Tim Hudson when asked what kind of pitcher Estes could end up becoming. Estes (2-1) got ahead of hitters early, throwing 15 first-pitch strikes.

“That literally was on my mind tonight watching him go out and pitch — the way he was pitching, the aggressiveness of his fastball, attacking hitters,” Kotsay said. “Huddy was that style of a pitcher.”

Zack Gelof hit a home run in the third, and Daz Cameron scored on a passed ball in the sixth after he had advanced from first to third on a wild pickoff throw.

Estes, making his seventh career start, did not allow a baserunner until J.P. Crawford led off the seventh inning with a double. The right-hander left the game one batter later after throwing 78 pitches and striking out five.

“He was just on tonight,” Crawford said about Estes.

Estes said making history didn’t really affect his mentality as the game went along.

“You kind of know what’s happening, but nothing changes,” Estes said of thinking about pitching a perfect game. “You’re still out there on the strike zone. It’s the same game. Nothing changes. I guess you kind of see it, but it’s not eating me up in my mind.”

Crawford jumped on a first-pitch fastball for Seattle’s lone hit against Estes, who said he was just trying to jump ahead in the count.

“If that’s a little bit shorter of a pop fly, that’s an out,” Estes said. “But also he could’ve gotten it and it could have went even further, so it’s just one of those things where you’ve just got to trust your pitches. I can only control what happens after I throw the ball. I can’t really control anything else.”

The Mariners loaded the bases with two outs later in the seventh, but T.J. McFarland got Mitch Garver to ground out to shortstop on a 3-2 pitch to keep the shutout intact. Miller closed for his 12th save, pitching around a leadoff homer by Julio Rodriguez in the ninth.

Estes outdueled Mariners starter Logan Gilbert (3-4), who allowed one earned run in six innings.

“He pitched a hell of a game,” Crawford said about Gilbert. “It sucks we couldn’t get him some run support to back him up.”

Leaving Oakland after this season, the A’s drew an announced crowd of 9,735 at the Coliseum.


Mariners: Closer Andrew Muñoz (back) underwent an MRI on Wednesday after a collision at a play at home plate on Tuesday. Manager Scott Servais said Muñoz is feeling “a little bit better” but didn’t have more updates. … RHP Gregory Santos (right lat strain) threw a limited bullpen session on Tuesday but there is no timetable on his return.

Athletics: RHP Joe Boyle (strained back) was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas after being reinstated from the injured list. Manager Mark Kotsay said the team will continue evaluating Boyle and consider bringing him back up in the future.


LHP J.P. Sears (4-4, 4.01 ERA) was et to start for A’s against Bryan Woo (2-0, 1.30 ERA) in the series finale Thursday.


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