How will the West be won?
The 2023 season for the Seattle Mariners has been wild. Expectations, moments of frustration and despair met with jubilation and dreams of another banner added to T-Mobile Park. Much like the Mariners, Texas, Houston and Toronto have all experienced very similar feelings this season. It's nearly impossible to predict how this ride will finish, but here's my best guess.
I believe that the Seattle Mariners will win their final road series of the year in Texas. It should be a massive crowd, but I have a really good feeling about Miller providing a special moment back home in Texas. The crowd at cavernous Globe Life Field should be loud, but I expect the stars to step up and the bullpen to hold, and the Mariners to leave Texas with a 1 game lead.
From there I believe that the Mariners will come home and take another massive step to proving they're passing Houston, literally and figuratively. It won't be a sweep, but Castillo will outduel Verlander, and Kirby will get revenge for his ALDS heartbreak as Seattle takes two of three against the Astros.
With the Rangers in town, and the Mariners a .5 game ahead of Houston, Seattle goes for the kill, taking the first two from Texas. Thanks to the Blue Jays and Diamondbacks taking care of business, the win at home in game 160 clinches the AL West for the Seattle Mariners, a first since 2001. Seattle clinches the #2 seed, which allows them to rest Castillo and Kirby, setting up their biggest strength perfectly for an ALDS matchup against the Minnesota Twins.
Here's to hoping I'm right, but here's to hoping this is a fun final week plus of baseball.