A matchup of strong-armed, enigmatic southpaws whose performance has not always been consistent but at their best can look borderline Cy Young-esque? Tonight’s matchup between the Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays is a showdown between two of the best arms in MLB that hail from Asia. Hyun-Jin Ryu, one of if not the best pitchers in South Korean history, takes the ball for Toronto, having another stellar season following a 3rd-place finish in the 2020 AL Cy Young vote and a 2nd-place finish in the 2019 race in the NL. Ryu’s early career (in MLB) struggles were borne of injuries and opportunity, as he was usually effective when healthy. He’ll face Yusei Kikuchi, Seattle’s off-and-on ace who hails from the Iwate Prefecture in the northeast of Japan. Kikuchi had been in the midst of a dip in both effectiveness and velocity through most of the month of July, but picked up his heat and his numbers in his August 8th outing in NYC, hopefully a sign of good things to come.
Back-to-back starts for Tom Murphy as Seattle faces another southpaw, while the M’s attempt to stick their young outfielders late in the lineup and minimize exposure to the big bad left-hander.