The Mariners are 2-1 to start 2021 and are currently sitting in third place in the stacked AL West. A 3-0 start would have been better but you can’t get everything you ask for. How is the rest of the AL West doing? Let’s quickly go to each team and see what’s been going on.
1. Astros 4-0
The Houston Astros started Opening Day on the road in Oakland, and the fans gave the controversial Astros a warm welcome filled with lots of booing. Despite the fans’ efforts, the Athletics were swept by the Astros and none of the games were even close. Houston scored 35 runs and only allowed 9 runs.
Alex Bregman hit two home runs in the opening series, Kyle Tucker drove in seven runs and Yordan Alvarez drove in 6. We know the Astros are a good team, but we didn’t expect the Athletics to be swept.
Both teams are competing to be at the top of the AL West and the Athletics are off to a bad start.
2. Angels 3-1
Mike Trout and the Angels hosted the Chicago White Sox in a highly anticipated matchup. Both the Angels and White Sox were busy this offseason to better their chances to make a run in the playoffs and the Angels came up on top. The Angels won three of four games and are 3-1 to start the year.
David Fletcher, Mike Trout, Jarred Walsh, and Shohei Ohtani all had a big series. The Angels starting rotation also did a fine job except for Andrew Heaney in game two. 2021 is a big year for the Angels and I think they have a chance to win the AL West, and beating the powerful White Sox is a statement.
3. Mariners 2-1
The Mariners aren’t going to win the AL West, and I would be ecstatic if we finished in third place. The reality is, the “Triple A’s”: Angels, Athletics, and Astros are going to be at the top and if the Mariners are able to beat one of them out, I’d be rather amazed. Seattle did what they were supposed to do and took the series from the Giants.
The Mariners have some tough matchups this month and it might be a reality check for Mariners fans. Seattle plays the 1-3 White Sox so let’s see how we perform against a much better team.
4. Rangers 1-2
The Texas Rangers are projected by many to finish in last place in the AL West, but they aren’t right now. Texas played three games against the Kansas City Royals and was able to win one of three games. The Rangers scored 21 runs but the pitching staff let them down.
The Rangers offense was led by great performances from Nate Lowe, Isiah Kiner-Falefa, David Dahl, and Joey Gallo. Lowe leads the AL with nine RBIs right now. Jordan Lyles and Kohei Arihara had decent outings but the bullpen wasn’t able to hold the Royals down. Nolan Writin’ said their current pitching is a mess, but I think their offense might be sneaky good this season.
5. Athletics 0-4
The Athletics aren’t off to an ideal start… Not only did they get run over by the Astros, but they also weren’t able to score very many either. In four games, they scored just nine runs. The White Cleat Beat referenced the team’s contact issues as a reason for their early struggles. The A’s were also missing a couple of players due to injuries so the struggles may continue for a short while.
The A’s starting pitching also struggled to start the season. Usually, the Athletics rotation usually gets the job done without having elite members, but this wasn’t the case in the opening series. The starting pitchers allowed 17 runs and the bullpen wasn’t able to hold it down either. The often reliable Adam Kolarek and Jake Diekman gave up six runs together.
We’re only a few days into the 2021 season, so the standings at the end of the season should look much different. But for us Mariners fans, I would love for the standings to stay this way!