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4/16/21: Open Game Thread

First chance for fans to let the infamous Astros have it. Part of “it” will be Yusei Kikuchi.

Houston Astros v Oakland Athletics
Yes it’s an A’s fan but just one time
Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

We’re a long way from 2017 and 2018, but the Houston Astros remain tainted by their cheating scandal, an open secret that broke wide open just after the 2019 World Series. Allegations of Astros cheating stretched far beyond the years MLB doled out their tap on the wrist for, of course, but with the lone punishments being minor fines, suspensions for GM Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch, and an extraordinarily light draft pick penalty of just one pick lost in 2020 and 2021, it’s no surprise Houston’s players have been unrepentant and unable to shake the stigma of their rule-breaking. But through the 2020 season, fans have had next to no recourse, watching from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

At last, however, 9k Seattle Mariners fans will have a shot to show their creativity and frustration, albeit against a more limited Houston lineup. Houston is down several of its stars, including Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, and José Altuve due to a possible COVID outbreak and/or close contact. Yusei Kikuchi will face a righty-heavy lineup that is nonetheless far less daunting than the usual titanic crew, though Seattle will start off this weekend’s homestand against one of the club’s better starters in José Urquidy. Seattle will have Evan White AND José Marmolejos in the lineup.

Mariners PR

The M’s also made a few roster moves prior to tonight’s game, including clearing a 40-man spot and activating Tony Sandwiches.

Game Time: 7:10 PM PST
TV: ROOT
Radio : 710 AM ESPN
Online: MLB.TV