‘Kuma Heads to Mound Following No-No
The Mariners are 55-64. The Mariners lost another heartbreaker last night. This time in the bottom of the ninth on a pair of bunts, a hit batter, and a walkoff walk from Fernando Rodney. If you can even find the inner strength to watch tonight’s game, here’s the group the Mariners are running out there.
My thoughts, as usual, appear below:
1. Hisashi Iwakuma is pitching today. It’s his first start since his no-hitter last Wednesday against the Baltimore Orioles. ‘Kuma was masterful in that start, keeping the ball down and getting ahead with all of his pitches. It’s a catch-22 for the Mariners. I want to see them bring ‘Kuma back, so I want him to pitch well enough to warrant that. But, every start he throws great drives his next year’s price up and I don’t think the M’s will have much to spend this offseason.
2. Carson Smith will be available tonight in the ‘pen. Should the M’s actually have a lead worth protecting, the closer will be available. Like we talked about on the podcast yesterday: The M’s need to limit the innings on their young arm. That’s why you saw Fernando Rodney yesterday and not Smith, even though both essentially threw two innings on Sunday.
3. No Mark Trumbo today as Logan Morrison gets the start at first and Seth Smith plays in right. In theory, it’s a good lineup for the M’s against a righty, but we know what can happen when we think optimistically.
4. The ball will jump out in the heat of Arlington, so the M’s whole staff needs to keep the ball down. A tall order.
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