Among his variety of pitches, James Paxton discovered quickly he needed only one. His fastball was so overpowering that even though Oakland Athletics batters knew it was coming, they couldn't catch up.
That fastball led to the finest performance of Paxton's career with a major league-high 16 strikeouts on Wednesday night. And yet it ended up coming in a Seattle loss after the Mariners' bullpen blew a late lead and saw the A's rally for a 3-2 win.
It left the Mariners clubhouse filled with mixed feelings — thrilled about what Paxton did, and frustrated about blowing a game it should have won.
Paxton departed after seven innings with a 2-0 lead, then watched Jed...