Guti with a Gold Glove moment in center

Houston Astros v Seattle Mariners

-Getty photo

Nice Opening Night win by the Mariners tonight as they debuted at Safeco Field with a 3-0 victory over the Astros in a game that featured good pitching, timely hitting and a great defensive play.

But one thing really worth a closer look is the diving catch by Franklin Gutierrez in the top of the third to rob Ronny Cedeno of a shot to the gap. Here’s the video.

“You’ve seen him do it a lot. That was just tremendous,” said Eric Wedge. “He gets jumps on balls like most people don’t and puts himself in postion to make great plays like that. He just doesn’t have any fear out there. That was just a great play for us.”

Starting pitcher Joe Saunders, the beneficiary on the mound, called it “the play of the game.”

Shortstop Brendan Ryan, known for some pretty good leather himself, took it a step farther.

“Goosebumps moment,” said Ryan. “Opening Night, he makes the catch like that, the place just roars. That’s outstanding. You’re hoping someone is going to get that opportunity and come through. Usually it’s something on the offensive side that brings everyone to their feet, but he went a heck of a long ways for that.

” That was the Gold Glove stuff everybody knows he’s capable of and that’s something that can create momentum, too. We’re strong defensively and he just put the exclamation point on it there.”

And the man himself? Guti, as usual, played it pretty low key.

“I saw Saunders playing to the line (in right field) so I just went to go get it and the only chance I had to get it was to dive. I’m glad I caught it.”

And everyone was reminded once again why Gutierrez could be one of the keys to the season if he can stay healthy.

Here’s my game story on Mariners.com, as well as my notebook with all the news of the day, including Wedge talking about how he’s not yet ready to play Gutierrez every day.

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