An exhilarating start to the 2022 Seattle Mariners season was quickly followed by disappointment. After winning the first two games of the season by one run (of course), the Mariners were smoked by the Twins 10-4 on Sunday, and overwhelmed 4-0 on Monday.
Offense has been an issue early, with the M’s registering just 10 runs in the four games. Things don’t get easier either, with the heavy favorites in the AL Central, the Chicago White Sox, on deck.
Mariners vs White Sox: Pitching matchups (local time/Pacific)
Tuesday, April 12 @ 1:10 PM – Matt Brash vs Vince Velasquez
Wednesday, April 13th @ 4:10 PM – Robbie Ray vs Dallas Keuchel
Thursday, April 14th @ 11:10 AM – Logan Gilbert vs TBD
Each one of these matchups is exciting for Mariners fans. The first look at the highly regarded Brash will be coming up in a short few hours, after the youngster made the team out of Spring Training. The White Sox are anything but a soft landing, but it’ll still be fun to see Brash on the bump.
Ray vs Keuchel has the makings of a duel, pitting two Cy Young winners against each other. Keuchel struggled last year, but has still been one of the game’s best southpaws for the better part of a decade. Of note as well, it’ll be Keuchel’s first start of the season.
It’s unclear yet who Gilbert will face after Lucas Giolito was placed on the IL, but regardless, it’ll be thrilling to watch Gilbert match up against the Sox, especially with how good he looked against Minnesota last week.
Mariners vs White Sox: Hitters to watch
Mariners: Julio Rodriguez, Jarred Kelenic, Adam Frazier, Mitch Haniger
White Sox: Tim Anderson, Luis Robert, Andrew Vaughn, Jose Abreu
The players listed for each team are very different from one another. With the Mariners offense sputtering early, the M’s listed are guys that need to get it going.
It’s way too early for panic, but it would be good if Rodriguez, Kelenic, Frazier and Haniger all had strong series. Kelenic and Rodriguez are both hitting below .100, while Frazier and Haniger are both below .200; not ideal considering how many at-bats they’re both getting.
The White Sox, on the other hand, are ripping the cover off the ball. Anderson went 3-5 in his debut Sunday, Robert is hitting .385, Abreu is hitting .364, and Vaughn is on an early tear, hitting .400 with a pair of bombs and six RBIs.
Surprisingly, the White Sox as a team have only hit three home runs, with Yasmani Grandal being the only other home run hitter. But that is subject to change at absolutely any moment with the power in their lineup. The Mariners will need to step up offensively if they hope to make noise in this series.