.500 is calling
Fresh off a day off the Mariners welcome in the Oakland Athletics who are having a miracle season. In a division that is getting tougher do the M’s have what it takes to win this series?
Pitching match ups:
Game 138: RHP – A.J. Griffin vs. RHP – Felix Hernandez
The rookies right hander is 4-0 in 9 starts. He has looked pretty dominate holding opponents to a mere .193 batting average. Griffin has been amazing on the road with just a 1.50 ERA. However he has never faced Seattle before so I’m sure they can show him up. Am I right?
* Current Line: 4-0 / 2.26 ERA / 10 BB / 40 SO / 0.89 WHIP
Happy Felix day! In his last start Felix pitched a good game that unraveled in his final inning of work. The king will be looking to continue his Cy Young caliber season again the division rivals. Felix is 1-1 against Oakland this season in 4 starts with a 3.10 ERA.
* Current Line: 13-6 / 2.51 ERA / 48 BB / 191 SO / 1.04 WHIP
Game 139: LHP – Brett Anderson vs. RHP – Hisashi Iwakuma
Anderson is so far undefeated in 2012, but of course he has pitched in only 3 games against the Indians, Red Sox and the Twins.
A lot of his early success has been the fact that the Oakland defense has been remarkable this season. Anderson is primarily a fastball/slider pitcher with an occasional off speed breaking ball mixed in as well. He has pitched well against Seattle in the past and has a 6-3 record with a 1.90 ERA in 12 games against the M’s
* Current line: 3-0 / 0.90 ERA / 92 BB / 15 SO / 0.70 WHIP
Iwakuma has a good shot against the A’s if his performance against the Angels is any comparison. Iwok may sound like a mythical Star Wars character but the Japanese native continues to improve throughout the season.
He has gone 5-1 in his past seven starts.
* Current Line: 6-3 / 3.14 ERA / 39 BB / 80 SO / 1.25 WHIP
Game 140: LHP – Tommy Milone vs. LHP – Jason Vargas
The Mariners have faced this lefty 3 times already this season and struggled to score runs against him. Jesus Montero, however, seems to have his number. In the 6 at-bats he has had against Milone, Montero is hitting .667 with 4 hits including a home run.
* Current Line: 11-10 / 3.94 ERA / 31 BB / 118 SO / 1.23 WHIP
Jason Vargas bounced back well in his last start. The M’s veteran lefty pitched better at Safeco than anywhere else really. At home this season Vargas has a 2.52 ERA and an amazing 0.98 Whip.
* Current Line: 14-9 / 3.85 ERA / 47 BB / 121 SO / 1.17 WHIP
A’s vs. M’s Series Predictions
Game 1: Close game, a first one to score wins type of match up. The M’s have the advantage with Felix if they can give him support.
Prediction: Win (A’s 1 – M’s 2)
Game 2: I have a hard time seeing the M’s doing too well against this dominate lefty.
Prediction: Loss (A’s 4 – M’s 0)
Game 3: This should be a fun game to watch. If Vargas can keep the ball in the yard they should walk away with the win, however – the A’s have had a major streak of good luck. They may be able to pull it off even if Malone has a crap start.
Prediction: Loss (A’s 4 – M’s 3)
Athletics RHP Brandon McCarthy was resting comfortably in a critical care unit Thursday following surgery Wednesday night to relieve an epidural hemorrhage in his head after he was hit by a line drive above the right ear in Wednesday’s game.
McCarthy also suffered a brain contusion and skull fracture. The team provided no prognosis, but it’s likely his season is over.
In a scheduling rarity, Hernandez’s first three starts this season were against the Athletics, including the season opener in March. The Mariners have won 67 games, matching their total from last year.