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8/27/21: Open Game Thread

Logan Gilbert tries to improve on a not-so-hot performance last time around

Toronto Blue Jays v Seattle Mariners Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images

After a disappointing showing last night that dampened the excited South of France energy at the park, the Mariners try again to win a game against the Royals, a team with a worse record than the Detroit Tigers, against whom the Mariners also had trouble mustering a single solitary win. The vibes, they are bad.

Logan Gilbert takes the hill tonight, which means the Mariners offense can’t be as sleepy as they’ve been over the previous [checks notes] uhh season. Gilbert remains an incredibly talented pitcher, but he’s currently going through some growing pains in figuring out how to optimize his arsenal at the MLB level and be consistent in his pitches. Despite the dreadful box score in his last outing against the Astros he did show some improvement in not solely relying on his fastball and mixing his pitches more, and he also seems to be toying with a new, harder version of his slider that’s more like a cutter, hopefully to get the ball on the ground more. But all of this remains very much a work in progress, and if the Mariners are to have any chance tonight, the bats simply cannot be locked in cold storage as they have been for what feels like months.

The Mariners are running out their righty-heaviest lineup to face Kris Bubic, whose name you might recognize from some old Midshipmen’s Logs as he and Ljay Newsome battled each other for the title of MiLB Strikeout King. Like his thicc compatriot, Bubic doesn’t have an overpowering fastball, so compensates with a plus changeup. Hopefully the Mariners hitters can get into good counts and see that fastball rather than have to deal with the change; long at-bats would also be helpful in getting to the soft underbelly of the Royals bullpen, especially if Gilbert gives up some runs of his own.

News updates:

Also, Sean Doolittle has been added to the active roster and will be in uniform (#62) and available tonight. If you’re at the game tonight go wave to him and welcome him to Seattle! In a corresponding move, RHP Wyatt Mills has been optioned to Triple-A.

Tonight’s game is at 7:10 PT and can be found on all the usual bat-channels: ROOT Sports NW (TV), 710 ESPN (radio), and MLB dot com for those of you following on Gameday. Also, as a reminder, tomorrow’s game has been moved to 1 PM so as not to conflict with the Seahawks game. And so it begins.