The Seattle Mariners have had a tough time as of late, having been swept by the Houston Astros and dropping two-of-three against the St. Louis Cardinals in their past two series.
Despite those numbers, however, the Mariners did look to have a bit more heart against St. Louis and will be walking into Detroit looking to avenge a 2-12 loss at the hands of the Cardinals.
They’ll have a tough task against the Tigers, too, as Detroit currently sits atop the AL Central and has been one of the hottest teams in 2013.
It’ll be a long series, but it’ll definitely be great experience for some of the younger guys who will be looking to prove they already belong in the MLB. Should Seattle be able to walk away with two or three wins, look to see the Mariners regroup and finish off the year hot.
Here’s a brief preview of the upcoming games.
September 16, 2013 – Mariners vs. Tigers – 4:08 pm PT – ROOT Sports/710 ESPN
Joe Saunders will likely be pitching to prove his worth in the last few weeks, especially with the way Seattle’s young starters have looked very impressive in their first few starts. He hasn’t had the best of luck in recent weeks, but we’ll see if he can finish off 2013 on a high note.
Rick Porcello will oppose Saunders on the mound and will surprisingly be making his first start against the Mariners in 2013. He’s 12-8 on the year with a 4.56 ERA so look for Seattle to be aggressive in the early portions of the game as they look to jump out to a lead and give Saunders a lead in a hitter-friendly ballpark.
September 17, 2013 – Mariners vs. Tigers – 4:08 pm PT – ROOT Sports/710 ESPN
This game is the least appealing of the four for me. While Anibal Sanchez will pitch for the Tigers and likely once again show the nation why he is one of the top pitchers in 2013, Brandon Maurer is once again penciled in and I’m not really sure about him any more.
He’s got a lot of promise, but 2013 is clearly not his year. He’s been moved to the bullpen and made his way back and I just don’t know whether or not he is in the right frame of mind to really dominate a great Detroit team.
September 18, 2013 – Mariners vs. Tigers – 4:08 pm PT – ROOT Sports/710 ESPN
The final two games of the series are a little tough to analyze due to Seattle’s new rotation and some uncertainty surrounding who will be pitching in the final few weeks.
Felix Hernandez has been written off of his past two starts, Hisashi Iwakuma was impressive in his last outing but may be reaching his yearly max for innings, and rookies Taijuan Walker and James Paxton have taxed their arms in 2013.
One thing we do know for Wednesday’s game, however, is that Justin Verlander will be getting the start against the Mariners. He hasn’t had the best year of his career, but as we all know, he’s still Justin Verlander. He’s had one start against Seattle and took a loss while giving up two runs.
September 19, 2013 – Mariners vs. Tigers – 10:08 am PT – ROOT Sports/710 ESPN
For Seattle’s starter, see the above point made about the previous game. There’s still uncertainty surrounding who will pitch and a starter has not yet been named.
The Tigers, meanwhile, will be sending a familiar face to the mound in Doug Fister. Once a promising pitcher for the Mariners, Fister was traded to Detroit in 2011 and has done wonders for the Tigers.
He’s had one start against Seattle in 2013 and held the Mariners to two runs.
Nobody wants to see a team bow out towards the end of the season, and I don’t think Seattle is trying to do that.
Though outcomes in recent series may point towards a little slack in play, look for the Mariners to keep striving to get better and finish the year on a high note.