I don’t know about you, but it has been a rough week for me in Mariners fandom. The July Slide, Dylan Covey almost no-hitting the M’s, Safeco field turning orange, the revelation of a front office scandal and subsequent coverup from years past...it’s not been the hard reset I was hoping for from the All-Star Break. Tonight, Wade LeBlanc, steadfast member of the 2018 Mariners rotation, will take the mound and either provide a steadying hand or increase the calls for the Mariners to do something other than acquire a young, controllable reliever with a history of command issues at the trade deadline.
Wade will be facing an Angels team that’s started, grudgingly, to sell off pieces; there is every chance we could be seeing #HugWatch in action during the game, as several teams are reportedly interested in the Angels’ bullpen pieces. It’d be really helpful if they just moved some of them right there in-game, if you ask me. At the very least, the Mariners will no longer have to face one of the best defensive catchers in baseball in Martin Maldonado, so it’d be nice to see them a little more active on the basepaths tonight. (I confess to knowing nothing about José Briseño as a defensive catcher. Perhaps he is very good. But Maldonado is excellent. Thanks for the inter-division trade, Angels.)
If you read Jake’s series preview—and you should, always, every time—you know that 538 favors the Angels in this game. Heaney has been solid of late and while the Mariners have had some success against him, last time the two clubs met the offense was silenced by him after a first inning where they could have gone for the jugular. Heaney is projected to be the toughest pitching matchup the Mariners will face this series, so a loss tonight isn’t devastating, but with the Athletics storming through the heart of Texas and trimming the Mariners’ WC lead to just one game, it’s possible the team could find themselves, after tonight, out of playoff position for the first time since very early in the season. Please no, Mariners. I could really use this win after this week.
Game time: 7:07 PM and give me a break, Angels, what is with this weird timing
Channels: ROOT, 710 ESPN, MLB.tv, just win please just WIN