The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Eric Umphrey
The Times 

The Seattle Mariners' upcoming opponents

 

August 6, 2020



After a slow start, the Seattle Mariners find themselves in third place at 4-6 in the American League West behind Houston and Oakland. This week they will play the Angels (Aug. 4th-6th) and the Rockies (Aug. 7th-9th) at home, then travel to Texas (Aug. 10th-12th) to play the Rangers. The Mariners had opportunities in two of their back to back 3-2 losses to Oakland, but couldn’t come up with the big hit.

The Angels are 3-7 on the season and have already lost a series to the Mariners at home last week. Mike Trout will be back with the team to start the Mariners series after being away from the team for the birth of his son. Two-way player Shohei Ohtani has had troubles pitching this year and had an MRI done after experiencing arm discomfort. The Angels pitching staff hasn’t been good this year (4.83 ERA), and this looks like an opportunity for the Mariners to win another series.

At 6-2, Colorado is off to one of the best starts of any team this year. Their pitching staff has a 2.92 ERA and is averaging almost a strikeout per inning. Matt Kemp, Trevor Story, Daniel Murphy, and Charlie Blackmon have all been hot to start the season. The only injury of note for Colorado is Wade Davis, the closer, who is on the ten-day injured list. It will be a tough series for Seattle, and they will need to pitch well to win.

The Texas Rangers are 3-5 out of the gate. Their best pitcher to start this year is Lance Lynn. He’s pitched six scoreless innings with eight strikeouts to start the year. Fortunately, it doesn’t look like the Mariners will see him on this trip as he is scheduled to pitch the game before the Mariners series starts. Rangers’ outfielder Joey Gallo has three home runs in his first eight games of the season. He’s easily been the Rangers best hitter this season. Without him, the team is batting .180 with no power whatsoever. This will be another series the Mariners can win.

For Seattle, Kyle Lewis leads the way hitting .425 with three home runs and nine runs batted in. The only negative for Kyle is his seventeen hits are matched by seventeen strikeouts in forty at-bats. To remain successful at the major league level, his strikeout rate needs to come down.

Most projection systems don’t like the Mariners chances this season. Fangraphs.com currently predicts they will go 24-36 this season. This seems too pessimistic. Projection systems usually have difficulties predicting breakout seasons for young teams like Seattle. As of now, the Mariners are only one game behind the eighth seed for the playoffs. In a shortened season like this, it only takes a few unexpected wins to go from a last-place team to a team that wins 28-31 games, which should be enough for one of the eight playoffs spots this season.

 

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