For the first time in the 2021 season, the Seattle Mariners are playing the Los Angeles Angels and the most dangerous player in all of baseball, Mike Trout. You wouldn’t think that the Mariners would have two series against the Dodgers before seeing the Angels once, but that’s how 2021 has fared so far.
Both teams have been playing well so far this season, with the Mariners just a half-game up on the Angels after losing three of four to Houston. Oddly enough, the Astros did the exact same thing to the Angels that they did to the Mariners, winning the first three before the Angels took the fourth game to avoid being swept.
You can mark this as a changing point in both team’s seasons. Up until now, Seattle has had one of the most difficult schedules in the league, with the Angels sitting in the middle. Seattle will see a run of much easier teams coming up in May, playing Baltimore, Texas, Cleveland, and Detroit in four of their next five series.
The angels have it much tougher and will be facing Tampa, the Dodgers, Houston, and Boston in their next four series. This could be an important, albeit short, three-game set between the division rivals. Who can we expect to see on the mound?
Mariners vs. Angels: Pitching matchups
Andrew Heaney vs. Chris Flexen – 7:10 PM on 04/30
Griffin Canning vs. Ljay Newsome – 06:10 PM on 05/01
Dylan Bundy vs Justus Sheffield – 01:10 PM on 05/02
Chris Flexen has been pitching incredibly well for the Mariners since being signed out of the KBO. Through 23 innings, he’s given up just seven earned runs, five walks, and a lone home run on the way to an ERA of 2.74 and a FIP of 2.61. He also had a career-high K rate, punching out 8.2K/9.
Dylan Bundy will take the mound in the finale for the Angels, and has been reminiscent of the reason he was taken 4th back in 2011. Combining 2020 and 2021, Bundy has a FIP of 3.24 and is punching out 10K/9. He’s averaging about six innings a start as well, getting into the game deeper than he did his first few years in the league.
Mariners vs. Angels: Injury news and updates
Unfortunately for the Mariners, they are no without their top two starters. Marco was placed on the disabled list with a forearm strain… and I’m not going to say anything else.
The Angels have been pretty healthy so far, with Dexter Fowler being the biggest name to go down this season. He was diagnosed with a torn ACL and will miss the season. Juan Lagares has been iffy with a calf but should be fine to go soon, likely in this series.
Mariners vs. Angels: Mike Trout is scary
Oh my goodness. Have you had a chance to look at Mike Trout’s numbers this season?
.420/.524/.783 with six home runs, seven doubles, 14 RBI, and 16 runs. Oh my. Mike Trout is the greatest player in baseball, and I love watching him 162 games a season. It’s just that for 19 of them, I’m scared of him. If the Mariners can limit him to just a single home run and a week where he goes 4 for 13, I’d call that a win.
The series starts up Friday night, and should be a nice matchup, possibly the most even one that the Mariners have seen so far this season. Best of luck, Mariners fans.