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Preview: Seattle Mariners (4-7) vs. Texas Rangers (7-3)

Gameday: Iwakuma looks to right the ship for reeling Mariners against Yu Darvish

seriously try to hit this
seriously try to hit this

Today, the Mariners start fresh. The past three days have been something to forget, and too many words have already been spilled venting our despair and frustration. Today, the Mariners get to face Yu Darvish, who looked almost as unhittable as humanly possible in his first start of the season.

Try not to remember that Darvish does this:


And this:


And this:


Darvish has generated a 16.8% swinging strike rate this year, tops in the majors.

It can't help but feel like the Mariners are desperate for a stop, given the last three performances and last night's frustrating loss, and a tough series looming against the Tigers. The Mariners need to steal some victories they shouldn't otherwise get, and this is a day to do it.

Get ready for lots of Jason Bay and Raul Ibanez in the next few days. I'm dreading/eagerly awaiting some choice additions to the Raul Ibanez Takes Pride in His Defense section of this site. Immortality awaits, Raul. If the Mariners going to lose again, please do it in style.

The Mariners will roll out Hisashi Iwakuma to face Darvish, which would be an "exciting" Japanese pitcher match-up if they didn't already do it last year, where Darvish was excellent and Iwakuma was ok. Imagine all of the empty narratives if Ichiro was still here.

Iwakuma operated painfully slow last season, averaging 25.2 seconds between pitches, but he's picked up the pace somewhat this season at 22.2 seconds. Darvish takes a brutal 26.7 seconds per pitch this season, and that includes the near perfect game. He's currently the slowest pitcher in the majors. Strap in and get ready for a long one.

Time: 7:10 pm PDT
Location: Safeco Field, Seattle, WA
Television: ROOT Sports,