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May 22, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon (23) pulls Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Roenis Elias (29) from the game during the sixth inning against the Houston Astros at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Seattle Mariners Gameday Preview Versus the Angels

Initial Thoughts:

Chris Young was dominant and the Mariners scored early and cruised to the 5-1 victory over the Angels in yesterday’s Memorial Day game. Coincidentally, the Mariners are 5-1 against the Angels thus far this season. Can the hot streak continue? Can the Mariners continue their teeter-totter between over and under .500 baseball?

Game Details:

Seattle Mariners 25-25. Last 10: (5-5).

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 28-22. Last 10: (6-4).

Game Time: 7:10 PM Pacific time. Location: Seattle, Washington. Safeco Field.

 

MATCHUPS:

Pitching:

Seattle Mariners LHP Roenis Elias (3-3, 3.68 ERA) v. Los Angeles Angels RHP Jered Weaver (5-3, 2.85 ERA).

EDGE: Weaver. On Wednesday Weaver threw a complete-game, 2-hitter against the Astros. He has earned his ace title so far this season, and though Elias has been a pleasant surprise as a rookie, it is tough to give him an edge over one of the most consistent pitchers in Major League Baseball. It could be a pitchers duel if Elias can find his control in today’s game.

Projected Lineups:

Mariners:

James Jones 8

Michael Saunders 9

Robinson Cano 4

Justin Smoak 3

Mike Zunino 2

Kyle Seager 5

Nick Franklin DH

Dustin Ackley 7

Brad Miller 6

Of Note: Cano continued his tear in yesterday’s game, with his batting average climbing to .332. The Mariners put 2 runs up in the 1st and 3 runs in the 2nd, and managed an efficient 5 runs on just 7 hits. They also showed more patience at the plate, walking 4 times in the 9 innings.

Angels:

Howie Kendrick 4

Mike Trout 8

Albert Pujols 3

David Freese 5

Raul Ibanez 7

Erick Aybar 6

C.J. Cron DH

Chris Iannetta 2

Kole Calhoun 9

Of Note: The Angels were held to only 3 hits by Chris Young and Co. yesterday. The Angels, still without slugger Josh Hamilton, have been winning of late with timely hitting, despite what many consider a major ‘slump’ by 2-time MVP runner-up Trout.

 

Other Notes:

The M’s are 5.5 games back of the Oakland Athletics for first in the division. The Mariners don’t play Oakland again until the first week of September. It’s an age-old expression that always seems to float around sports articles, but those in-division games are just as important in May as they are in September.

Sitting again at .500, the M’s really need to start pushing that record over .500. Sure, this team could finish 81-81 or 82-80 and no one would be altogether surprised– but at the same time 82 wins is not something you want to see when you are paying two guys north of $24 million a season as they are reaching, and passing, their primes.

Wins are always at a premium, and this 4-game set against the Angels is no exception.

 

Final Thoughts:

This is a tough one for the M’s. Sure Elias has been good, but it’s hard to match the veteran cheeky-ness of Weaver on any given day. The M’s have given Weaver fits before, but this team has a knack for not hitting when they really ought to be. Not a blowout, but I don’t think the M’s can do much more than tread water in this one unless Elias comes out firing.

Score Prediction:

Mariners 2, Angels 5.

 

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Tags: Roenis Elias Seattle Mariners

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