In anticipation of tonight’s game, I got out my broom and cleaned my apartment, because the Mariners are looking to sweep the A’s for the second time this year after winning the last three games and outscoring Oakland 20-5. While I personally believe that Thursday night games are for sickos, dooming us all to be extra tired on Friday, I am looking forward to this one for one particular reason:
That’s right, our very own first baseman Tythew Francebelton is back in action after sitting out yesterday from being hit by a pitch on his hand. He took infield and batting practice before the game, and is seemingly feeling good. Here’s hoping for a couple of knocks to get him his mojo back.
Meanwhile, LoGi is on the bump, but unfortunately Cal is not his battery mate, and is instead DHing tonight, allowing the lefty-mashing Tom Murphy to get a start against JP Sears. I’m also excited to see José Caballero in the starting lineup, who’s really putting on a performance since being called up.
Notes from Pregame:
- It’s Bark in the Park night! So prepare to see some Very Good Doggos on your screen.
- Injury update: Ty France returns to the lineup and the field, as he’s feeling much better after getting hit in the hand by a fastball the other night. Ty says he’s thankful he got hit in the “meaty” part of the outside of his palm, as an inch or two lower would have hit the wrist; as it was, he thought his wrist “exploded” in the initial burst of pain before the adrenaline wore off and he realized nothing was broken. Scary times, but very thankful it wasn’t worse!
- Eugenio Suárez also returns to the lineup after getting an early breather last night; he took a foul ball off the foot and was feeling a little discomfort. AJ Pollock is someone the team is “keeping an eye on” after he got a little banged up the other night, and won’t be in the lineup tonight, even with the lefty Sears on the mound, but Servais says he thinks Pollock will be “okay.”
- Cal Raleigh is also okay despite tripping near the dugout last night chasing after a foul pop-up, which he described as “probably not my most athletic moment.”
- Servais was pleased with the improved plate discipline he saw last night against a very wild Waldichuk, although noted it took the offense a few looks at him to start really grinding out at-bats, but says he’s overall pleased with the trajectory of the offense as far as putting up better plate appearances.
- However, Servais does acknowledge that Sears shut this lineup down the last time they saw him, striking out seven in six innings with his riding fastball. He says he wants the hitters to work hitter’s counts and be aggressive to the fastball tonight, as that’s where they’re at their best.
- Tayler Saucedo likes to give players nicknames, which are, as you might expect from a lefty reliever, super weird! He’s christened Trevor Gott “Blood Clot” (I guess because he stops excessive bleeding?). Servais: “He’s straight left-handed” (derogatory).
How to watch:
It’s always a special day when Angie Mentink is on the call, and she is tonight on ROOT Sports NW, joining Aaron Goldsmith. Meanwhile on 710 Seattle Sports, Dave Sims and Rick Rizzs will be covering the game for radio listeners.
Today in Mariners History:
- 1989 - The Mariners acquire pitchers Randy Johnson, Brian Holman and Gene Harris from the Expos for pitchers Mark Langston and a PTBNL(Mike Campbell).
- 1991 - Ken Griffey Jr. makes one of his career best catches of a drive off the bat of Ruben Sierra at the Kingdome. Ranging to right-center he back-hands the line drive at full speed before crashing feet first into the wall.
- 1999 - Edgar Martinez gets his 3rd career GSHR at Minnesota.
- 2001 - John Olerud went 4x5 in a 13-3 win at Kansas City. The win put the Mariners 25-games over .500 for the first time in club history.
- 2002 - Rookie Rafael Soriano makes his first career start in a 3-2 loss vs. Baltimore. He tossed 5.2 innings, allowing three runs on four hits.
- 2002 - Outfielder Chris Snelling makes his Major League debut in left field vs. Baltimore.
- 2005 - In a game against the Orioles, the Mariners battery consists of a pair of 42-year olds as Jamie Moyer throws to backstop Pat Borders. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it marks the first time in major league history that two players 42 years or older have been the starting pitcher and catcher for a team.
- 2008 - Mariners play final game at historic Yankee Stadium.
- 2011 - Erik Bedard threw 6.0 shutout innings as the Mariners shut out the Twins 3-0 to complete a 5-1 road trip. Franklin Gutierrez hit his first home run of the season and Brendan Ryan went 2-for-3 with a triple.
- 2012 - Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry threw out the ceremonial first pitch as part of the 35th Anniversary celebration. The Mariners held a 4-0 lead in the game vs. the Angels, but Albert Pujols hit a 3-run home run in the 6th inning, and closer Brandon League gave up 3 runs in the 9th in the 6-4 loss.
- 2015 - Roenis Elias tossed his 5th straight quality start, allowing 1 run on 6 hits over 6.0 IP to pace the Mariners to a 4-1 win at Toronto.
- 2016 - Hisashi Iwakuma recorded his 50th career win in a 13-3 win over the Athletics. He became the 10th pitcher to win 50 or more games with the Mariners.
- 2018 - James Paxton threw 11 strikeouts in a 2-1 win over the Minnesota Twins at Safeco Field, his 4th game of the season at that point with double-digit strikeouts. That was the most in a single season by a Mariners pitcher since Félix Hernández had 6 games with 10+ strikeouts in 2014.