Mariners Spring Training Preview: Starting Pitchers

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Aug 21, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma (18) throws a pitch against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning at O.Co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Felix Hernandez & Hisashi Iwakuma

King Felix Hernandez is coming off another solid season for the Mariners. Although his numbers were not the best of his career, he proved again and again that he is worth every single penny of that huge contract he received last year.

He finished the season with a 3.04 ERA and tossed 216 strike outs over 204.1 innings pitched. Felix finished as an AL All-Star and 8th in AL Cy Young voting. The King saw a ‘first’ in his career as a Mariner last year as he was somewhat over shadowed by another pitcher in our lineup.

That pitcher was none other than “The Machine” (shout out to Dave Sims and Mike Blowers!), Hisashi Iwakuma. Sorry guys, I don’t think “The Machine” nickname will stick.

What an unbelievable year Iwakuma had for the M’s last year. His semi-unorthodox mechanics combined with a nasty split finger fastball that had many of the best hitters in baseball baffled at the plate last season.

Iwakuma finished 3rd in the AL Cy Young race and was an All-Star for the first time in his career. His numbers were a bit undersold due to late game mishaps and sloppy defense but he did finish with a 2.66 ERA and had 185 K’s to only 42 walks. His mechanics changed a bit from 2012 and that was what gave him such solid command during his starts.

We will hope to see the same out of our 1 and 2 starters this season.

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