Hello, and welcome to Mariners baseball Friday. Tonight the Mariners kick off a big ol', whopping weekend series against the defending World Series Champion Kansas City Royals. You can read Jake's always excellent series preview, and/or you can get an idea of the state of the Royals and their fans thanks to Max Rieper of Royals Review answering some questions.
Tonight the Mariners would be very well served by having Felix Hernandez walk the world. The Mariner's ace has had one of the weirdest months of his career, walking a gigantic, unseemly, nauseatingly large 14.2% of the batter's he has faced in 2016. He's also striking out the fewest number of hitters since 2009. ALSO he has a 1.80 ERA (just ignore that 4.05 FIP and 4.08 xFIP), and a strand rate of 84.6% which is way above his career norms.
One of two things is going to happen here, of course. Either Felix will get his damn fastball to start going where he wants it, and his peripherals will all sort themselves out to be nice and Felix-y, or they won't, and his strand rate will drop, his ERA will rise close to his FIP, and we'll all have ourselves a lovely bonfire with our happiness.
It's not a big deal, obviously. I'm not in anyway overly attached to the idea of Felix being an immortal god of the ages who will never decline and pitch at an all-star level into his late 30's. It's cool. Everything is just...cool cool cool.
|KANSAS CITY ROYALS||SEATTLE MARINERS|
|Alcides Escobar - SS||Norichika Aoki - LF|
|Mike Moustakas - 3B||Seth Smith - RF|
|Lorenzo Cain - CF||Robinson Cano - 2B|
|Eric Hosmer - 1B||Nelson Cruz - DH|
|Kendrys Morales - DH||Adam Lind - 1B|
|Alex Gordon - LF||Kyle Seager - 3B|
|Salvador Perez - C||Chris Iannetta - C|
|Omar Infante - 2B||Ketel Marte - SS|
|Jarrod Dyson - RF||Leonys Martin - CF|
|Kris Medlen - RHP||Felix Hernandez - RHP|
- Royals @ Mariners, 7:10 PM PDT, Safeco Field
- TV: ROOT, Radio: 710 ESPN, Online: MLB.TV
Win. For Felix, and the red dawn's rising.