The 2021 season is upon us, and it’s time for some Seattle Mariners Baseball!
The team gets to open up the season at home in Seattle, and the San Francisco Giants are going to be coming to town. What can we expect to see from both teams? The beginning of the season can always be a little hard to nail down, especially when teams are trying to finish off naming their 26-man squad.
Neither team has high expectations on the year, with both teams in the mid-low 70s for projected wins. With the Giants at 75.5 and the Seattle Mariners at 72.5, the playoffs are an option, but one with low chances of happening, especially with the playoffs returning to just ten teams total, five from each side.
Let’s get to it, and see what to expect for the Seattle Mariners first series of the year.
Yusei Kikuchi vs. Johnny Cueto – Friday at 7:10 PM
Chris Flexen vs. Logan Webb – Saturday at 6:10 PM
The Seattle Mariners have the better pitching staff, and it’s hard to argue against that. Gausman showed flashes with both Cincinnati and San Francisco over the last two seasons but really struggled in his time in Atlanta. Johnny Cueto hasn’t been the same since 2016 and is now pitching his 14th season at the age of 35. Webb doesn’t have many innings under his belt, tallying just 94 while amassing an ERA of 5.36, but a FIP of 4.15.
Marco is going to eat innings and is likely to put up a bunch of stat lines with seven innings and just two or three runs. Expect exactly that against a San Fran lineup that doesn’t pack much punch outside of Mike Yastrzemski. James Paxton was pushed back to get some more rest from his latest Spring Training start, slotting Kikuchi into the two, and lining up his rest more efficiently as well. According to Andrew Simon, it could be the start of a dark horse run at a Cy Young this year.
Flexen is the wild card for the finale. Having spent last year playing in Korea, it will be interesting to watch to see if that is the pitcher that shows up for the Mariners, or if it is more similar to the youngster who was pitching for the Mets. If there is going to be a game in this series with a lot of runs put up on the board, this would be the favorite.
- J.P. Crawford SS
- Mitch Haniger RF
- Ty France DH
- Kyle Seager 3B
- Tom Murphy C
- Jake Fraley LF
- Dylan Moore 2B
- Evan White 1B
- Taylor Trammell CF
It’s what our site-expert Ryota thinks the opening day lineup is going to look like, and there’s a good chance it ends up like that. With Kyle Lewis on the IL to start the season, we are going to get a look at two of the top outfield prospects in the system in Trammell and Fraley, both of whom were acquired via trades.
There’s a lot of unknown mixed with potential, and should be what fans watch for when it comes to the likes of White, Moore, and France this series. With the Giants in a similar position as the Mariners, it makes for a great opening series for all of them knowing that they aren’t facing any stellar pitchers, compared to the Tigers and Rockies, who have to play Cleveland and the Dodgers, respectively.
- Austin Slater, LF
- Mike Yastrzemski, RF
- Donovan Solano, 2B
- Brandon Belt, 1B
- Evan Longoria, 3B
- Buster Posey, C
- Wilmer Flores, DH
- Brandon Crawford, SS
- Mauricio Dubón, C
Expect to see a Giants lineup loaded with righties the first two nights, as they look to take advantage of facing lefties in Marco and Yusei. Longoria and Posey aren’t what they used to be, and Belt can struggle against lefties. That doesn’t mean you can overlook them, as Belt can still mash, and Posey and Longoria will make you pay if you aren’t careful.
Mariners fans, and baseball fans in general, rejoice. It’s a glorious day. One for celebration. It goes by the name “Opening Day”, and means that baseball is back. Go Mariners!