Mariners vs Rangers: An early chance to control the division is at play in Texas

The Mariners head to Texas with a shot at taking control of the division, as whoever wins the series will hold the AL West lead
Seattle Mariners v Colorado Rockies - Game Two
Seattle Mariners v Colorado Rockies - Game Two / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages
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The Mariners have turned things around over the last two series, going from a team who hadn't won a single series on the young season to a team that is now 5-1 over their last six games with a .500 record. Cal Raleigh has played a big part in that success, hitting not just for the power that we expect but doing so with a good batting average as well.

While it's a step that many a fan wanted to see from Cal, and we all hope he can keep the batting average up around .250, it's the pitching (surprise, surprise) that has been the main factor in getting the Mariners back to .500. In fact, they've accomplished an impressive feat that has only been done once before in the history of the franchise.

It's wild, cause even though they've been utterly dominant, it seems like no one is really talking about them. Despite a 1.48 ERA over the last 10 starts, I haven't heard a ton of national noise about the run that the pitchers have been on. Sure, you expect it against Colorado with the level of talent that they have, but what they did to Cincinatti was incredibly impressive. They held an (at the time) top-3 scoring offense to just five runs in a three-game series.

I bring up the Reds because it is something that the Mariners are going to need to do again if they are going to find success against the Texas Rangers in this mid-week series that they are playing against them. The Rangers have scored the third most runs in the American League, so the Mariners are going to have their hands full. Who does the job fall to? Let's jump into and check out the pitching matchups from the series.