Byline: Geoff Baker
Aug. 23--MINNEAPOLIS -- There weren't many bright spots for the Mariners on a day the game was over in the first inning.
But left-handed reliever Ryan Rowland-Smith at least spared some bullpen arms and perhaps opened some eyes Wednesday afternoon by tossing four hitless innings with six strikeouts. The work by Rowland-Smith, who replaced starter Miguel Batista after only two innings in the 8-4 defeat to Minnesota, was the longest of the season by the 24-year-old product of Newcastle, Australia.
"I just went out there, tried to get ahead in the count and enjoy myself -- try to have fun," Rowland-Smith said after his first hitless outing in 13 this season. "It doesn't come around too often."
The last time he worked more than three innings came last season with Class AA San Antonio.
Rowland-Smith never envisioned himself being in a big-league pennant race after beginning this season in Class AAA -- getting …