The magnetic pull of .500 is strong. Very strong. The Mariners have to compete with not only that, but also the team with the best wRC+ in the American League. Sounds easy enough, right?
Well, to make things harder, Dallas Keuchel will be throwing the baseball. He's been shaky since his return to the disabled list, but owns a 3.30 xFIP for the season.
On the bump for the Mariners is Erasmo Ramirez. For comparison sake, Ramirez' ERA since the beginning of August is 3.62, while Keuchel's is 5.05. Advantage 'Ners!
Let's take a look at the people who will be hitting baseballs.
|HOUSTON ASTROS||SEATTLE MARINERS|
|George Springer - RF||Jean Segura - SS|
|Alex Bregman - 3B||Mitch Haniger - RF|
|Jose Altuve - 2B||Robinson Cano - 2B|
|Carlos Correa - SS||Nelson Cruz - DH|
|Josh Reddick - LF||Kyle Seager - 3B|
|Yulieski Gurriel - DH||Danny Valencia - 1B|
|Marwin Gonzalez - 1B||Mike Zunino - C|
|Brian McCann - C||Guillermo Heredia - CF|
|Cameron Maybin - CF||Taylor Motter - LF|
|Dallas Keuchel - LHP||Erasmo Ramirez - RHP|
The Mariners are undefeated in September, so they have that going for them. Here's to momentum.
Bonus Round! The Mariners made some moves today. David Phelps was placed on the 60-day disabled list, as a Mariners pitcher would be. Additionally, Zac Curtis was designated for assignment.
With two open spots, the Mariners claimed Cubs prospects Jacob Hannemann and Seth Frankoff.
Hannemann is a centerfielder, who's biggest assets are his glove and his speed. Offensively, he's more of a work in progress, but had a strong showing in AA a season ago.
Frankoff is a tall pitching prospect who's already made his MLB debut. After converting to a reliever role in 2013, the Cubs stretched him back out to be a starter this season, having him start 21 of his 24 AAA games. He runs a relatively high ground ball rate, and saw a big increase in strikeout rate last season. A high HR/FB throughout his career
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Game Time: 3:40 PST