M’s back at Safeco after a TOUGH loss
The Seattle Mariners (7-7) continue their inaugural home stand by hosting the Chicago White Sox (6-6) for a 3 game series. So far this season the Mariners have shown some surprising offensive efforts and some worrisome pitching scenarios.
Seattle is currently tied for 2nd place with Oakland in the A.L. West.
Pitching match ups
Game 15: LHP – Chris Sale vs. RHP – Hector Noesi
After doubting the trade acquisition of Pineda for Hector Noesi in his first start, Hector showed his new club just what he could do throwing 8 scoreless innings in a 4-0 Win against the Oakland Athletics at Safeco Field.
- Noesi has only ever pitched 1 inning against the White Sox in his career. Picking up a strike out and giving up a Home Run.
- Opponents are wise to swing at Noesi’s first pitch in an At-Bat. Those that did in 2011 hit .429.
Sale is a converted reliever making his bid to be a legitimate starting pitcher. The White Sox would be happy if the experiment works out and they end up with two high qualify lefties on their starting rotation.
- Sale started off 2012 1-1 with a 3.09 ERA in 2 starts against Cleveland and Detroit reflectively.
- Against the Mariners last season Sale was 0.00 recording a save at 2 strike outs.
- Sale is most vulnerable early in the count. Mariners need to be aggressive if they want to have a chance at a W.
Game 16: RHP – Phil Humber vs. RHP – Blake Beavan
Blake Beavan has allowed only 4 runs in 13.1 innings of work this season, including holding the Texas Rangers to just a single run in their home ballpark. Bevan was drafted in the first round by Texas in 2007, before coming to the Mariners in the Cliff Lee deal.
- Beaven gave up 11 Home Runs at Safeco Field in 58 innings last season.
- In 2011 left handed batters hit .314 against Beaven, so far in 2012 that number is sitting at .267. Lets hope that improvement is permanent.
- This will be Beaven’s first appearance against the White Sox.
This will only be Humber’s second start of the season. His first game of 2012 was a no decision loss against Balitmore despite a strong start on Humber’s part.
In that game he went 5.1 innings giving up a single run on six hits with 7 strike outs.
His team snatched defeat out of the jaws of victory in the 10-4 loss.
- For his career Humber is 11-10 with a 4.06 ERA
- Mariners batters have only hit .167 against Humber over the past 3 seasons (09-11)
Game 17: LHP – John Danks vs. Kevin Millwood
Kevin Millwood contributed to a heart breaking loss in which the Mariners blew a 7 run lead against the Cleveland Indians. However with 15 years of experience Millwood is more likely to shake off the bad start and recover nicely for this performance.
- Millwood has no record from either of his outings and is sitting at a 6.30 ERA in 10 innings pitched
- Left handed batters are hitting .320 against Millwood so far this season.
- Though Millwood hasn’t face the White Sox since 2010, his last outing against Chicago was excellent. 6 IP / 4 hits / 1 ER / 2 BB / 2 SO / 1.50 ERA.
The 27 year old right hander John Danks (1-2) will take the mound for the Sox for the final game of the series. Danks has pitched well so far this season, but not well enough to make up for the lack of run support from his team on his outings.
- In 2011 Danks dominated the Mariners in his 2 outings against them with a 0.00 ERA and 16 Strike Outs.
- Danks last appearance at Safeco was a complete game shutout.
White Sox vs. Mariners Series Predictions Game 1:
The White Sox are the favorites in nearly every category. Aside from their 4 game set with the Rangers, this is likely to be the most challenging match up for the Mariners yet. Noesi is coming off a good performance, but isn’t predictable at this point.
Well the Mariners as a whole are unpredictable, bouncing between good and not so good. Sale, as a converted starter will probably be dominate for the first 3 innings. The M’s should try to drive up his pitch count, be aggressive in the count and on the basepaths.
If they can capitalize on a mistake it could get them into a bullpen that has so far been unpredictable. Prediction: Loss (White Sox 4 – Mariners 1)
The Mariners best odds are in the outing between Humber and Beaven. Although the Mariners don’t have the best history against Humber they have shown to be a new team this season and I think that their offensive production against the right hander will be a surprise for the White Sox. Prediction: Win (White Sox 2 – Mariners 5)
Millwood is a laid back type of guy that can let a bad performance go. His numbers over the spring were consistent and his first start in Texas was impressive. There is also something to be said for the Mariners pitchers getting lazy with a big lead.
The pitchers have to stay competitive no matter what the numbers on the score board are. Danks has been dominate against Seattle in his career. A late inning rally may be the only way to win this game.
The question is if Millwood can keep the game close until then. Prediction: Loss (White Sox 4 – Mariners 3)
More Seattle Mariners News
The White Sox have no one on their disabled list. That must be nice.
Catcher Adam Moore who was hoping to make 2012 a comeback season will be having surgery on his knee for the second time in as many years.
Hishashi Iwakuma has yet to appear in a game for the Mariners.