Mariners Game Notes: LoMo Atop the Lineup Again


The Seattle Mariners (24-30) will look to put an end to their 6-game skid on Friday night against the Tampa Bay Rays (29-26) at Safeco Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 pm from the corner of Edgar & Dave. J.A. Happ (3-1, 3.70 ERA) will be tasked with evening the series for the Mariners, and the Rays will counter with Jake Odorizzi (4-5, 2.61 ERA). Root Sports Northwest will carry the game live, and subscribers can watch on connected devices.

The M’s enter tonight’s game losers of 7 of their last 8 games. Seattle continues to plummet in the American League West standings, and now sit in 4th place, 9.5 games back of the division leading Houston Astros.

Mariners’ manager Lloyd McClendon and Rays’ boss Kevin Cash have released the following lineups for tonight’s game:

Logan Morrison Hitting Leadoff Again for the Mariners

McClendon has opted to go with Logan Morrison as his leadoff man on Friday night. This is becoming a regular spot for LoMo, as tonight’s start marks his 3rd appearance atop the M’s lineup in less than a week. Morrison is arguably Seattle’s hottest hitter, and he enters play riding an 11-game hitting streak. The Mariners’ first baseman is hitting .333 and has posted a .391 on base percentage during the streak. However, the run production has not been there. LoMo has only hit 1 double, 0 home runs and driven in 0 runs over his last 11 games. Hopefully that will change tonight.

Austin Jackson Not in Starting 9

The Mariners are giving their regular center fielder a night off. AJ has been on a tear over his last 8 ballgames, hitting .361 with 3 doubles and 3 RBI’s. Jackson has tallied 13 hits, but has scored just 1 time during that stretch. The Mariners’ offense is anemic right now, and benching the 28-year-old spark plug makes little sense to me. McClendon sites AJ’s ankle issues as the reason for him not being in the lineup. Dustin Ackley will get the nod in center field tonight for Seattle.

May 29, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners designated hitter Nelson Cruz (23) participates in batting practice before a game against the Cleveland Indians at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Pick to Click

The Mariners have had serious trouble scoring runs this season. The only constant contributor at the plate has been Nelson Cruz. I was not sure about Cruz when the M’s inked him to a big money deal this past winter, but he has been incredible in his debut season in Seattle. Cruz is hitting .319 with 18 home runs and 39 RBI’s this season. However, the charismatic right fielder has had a rough go of it during the last week. Cruz is hitting just .194 with 0 home runs and 1 RBI over the last 7 games. I expect that to change in a big way tonight. I predict the 34-year-old will come through with a pair of hits, and an important late-inning home run on Friday nigh at Safeco Field.

Final Score Prediction

The Mariners have not scored more than 3 runs in a game since May 26th, and with Jake Odorizzi on the hill tonight for Tampa, I expect Seattle to struggle offensively again. However, J.A. Happ has been a revelation for the M’s in 2015, and he is more than capable of going toe to toe with Odorizzi. I think we will see yet another tight game, but the M’s will snap their 6-game losing streak with a 3-1 win tonight.

Be sure to check back at SoDo Mojo following the game for a full recap of tonight’s victory. (Fingers crosses!)

Next: Mariners Analysis: M's Beaten By Old Friend

More from SoDo Mojo