M’s back at Safeco on a losing streak
May 4 – May 7
The Seattle Mariners road trip felt more like road kill as the M’s were swept in Tampa. As the team comes home to Seattle they will be looking to snap their losing streak and improve their record at home.
The twins could be just the team to provide them with the uplift they are looking for.
Pitching match ups:
Game 28: RHP – Carl Pavano vs. LHP – Jason Vargas
Pavano is a 6′ 5″ 250 veteran that has been struggling with this velocity and control this season.
- Pavano’s dominate fastball has not been quite so dominate this season, with opponents seeing the ball better the right hander is getting in trouble more often.
- Pavano’s current line 1-2 (in 5 starts) / 4.91 ERA / 17 SO / 6 / BB / 1.15 WHIP
Surprisingly Vargas has the best record of the Mariners starters at 3-2. Vargas has been receiving more run support this year than in the past and his talent is starting to become really apparent.
- Current Twins roster is batting .288 as a team against Vargas
- Vargas has held right handed batters to just .186 average this season
Game 29: RHP – Jason Marquis vs. RHP – Felix Hernandez
As a direct opposite to Felix Marquis has a 6.23 ERA and still holds a 2-0 record. Marquis is a 12 year veteran but has been struggling so far this season.
- The players with the best match up ratings against Marquis are Chone Figgins (.667), Justin Smoak (.500) & Brendan Ryan (.400). Lets hope good stats lead to the end of the slumps all three players are in.
- Left handed batters are hitting .366 against Marquis this season
- This will be Marquis first career game in Safeco field. Can the M’s use that to their advantage?
Felix has been showing some quality stuff so far this season, but unfortunately the rest of the team has no. Felix only has a 2-1 record for the season despite his 2.23 ERA.
- Interesting to note that as reports of Hernadez’s loss of velocity that he has seemingly adjusted his game play slightly. In his 7 innings against Detroit he had only 2 strike outs. What this communicates is Felix doesn’t just throw, he pitches. This is good news for the Mariners who are trying to build a team around their ace.
- Historically over the past 3 season, May has been the KINGS most difficult month statistically.
- Despite going 0-1 against the Twins last season Felix had a 2.25 ERA in 8 innings.
Game 30: RHP = Nick Blackburn vs. RHP – Hector Noesi
The 30 year old right hander out of Ada Oklahoma has not fared well in the 4 games he has pitched so far this season going 0-3 with a 6.64 ERA.
- Opponents are hitting .314 against Blackburn this season (.407 for lefties, .271 for right handed batters)
- Blackburn holds a 2.68 ERA against the M’s in his last 6 games
- Blackburn has yet to pitch more than 6 innings in a game this season
If it seems that this game is tilted in Seattle favor, Noesi balances the scales for the Twins. Hector has a 1-3 record with 7.83 ERA
- Noesi pitched 1 inning against the Twins as a reliever last season giving up 1 hi and 2 walks along with 2 strike outs
- Left handed batters are hitting an alarming .327 against the Mariners #4 starter
Twins Vs. Mariners Series Predictions
As pointed out by many people on twitter, the Twins have no hits in 15 innings paired with a team that has lost 6 straight. Sigh. If the M’s can simply covert base runners to runs, they will win. Prediction: Win (Mariners 5 – Twins 2)
With several wasted starts for their Ace, the M’s will have extra motivation to play this game right. As a team they have the advantage against the Twins starter. If they don’t win this game, there should be some major shake ups on the roster. Prediction: Win (Mariners 6 – Twins 1)
I have no faith in Noesi at this point. I hope he proves me wrong. Prediction: Loss (Mariners 6 – Twins 7)
Miguel Olivo is out for the foreseeable future with a groin injury.
Jesus Montero will have to pull it together to keep up the passed ball record Miguel was going for.
The Mariners have won Vargas’ last four home starts and his last five starts in series openers. Twins LF Josh Willingham is 0-for-11 with five strikeouts against Vargas. The rest of the Minnesota roster is a combined 21-for-62 (.339).
Minnesota has won just 14 of its last 61 games overall and has lost the opening game in 22 of its last 26 series.