As good as the Mariners have been for much of the season, it doesn’t look like they will be good enough to get into the playoffs. They are in danger of becoming irrelevant if they don’t fare well in this series.
What a year it has been for the A’s, who have really come out of nowhere to get very close to the Astros. 25 games over .500, and still just beginning to hit their potential, the A’s are looking good.
Led by the power of Nelson Cruz (32 home runs), this team has been showing the power this year. But they have been struggling of late, and despite being decently far over .500, they have actually been outscored by 42 runs. Jean Segura has continued to hit the ball well, while Ryon Healy, Mitch Haniger, and Kyle Seager have all gone deep frequently.
The loss of Robinson Cano early in the season hasn’t taken the toll on this team many people expected, and they are still on contention. Cano is back and helped them to a win last night. They’ve got a chance, but they need some wins, especially in this series. 16 games over .500 in the AL in 2018 is not enough.
The Mariners will send Mike Leake to the mound for his 27th start of the season. He has posted an 8-8 record with a 4.03 ERA in 160 2/3 innings of work. He has struck out 102 batters while walking 31. He was not so good, to put it lightly, in his last start against the DBacks, allowing five runs on seven hits over six innings on August 26.
What a year it has been for the Athletics. Matt Chapman has been on a tear of late, Khris Davis just went over the 100 RBI-mark, and as a team, they are absolutely killing it. Two of their starting pitchers were young when they were last year, and have come back to help the team many years later. Blake Treinen has continued to be one of the best closers in baseball, while Lou Trivino in front of him, has held a number of close games. There are very few weaknesses with this A’s team.
They will send Mike Fiers to the mound for his fifth start since coming to Oakland. He has gon3 3-0 in his first four starts, with 28 strikeouts and just three walks in 24 innings of work. He has posted a 1.50 ERA in this time, and has looked like a real ace. Nice snag, Billy Beane.
Mariners, Leake, earn a big one
A good day for the Mariners as they will take out the Mariners on the first day of the vital series.
Nelson Cruz will go yard twice to help power the offense against the red-hot Mike Fiers. Good job, Seattle, You are a single-game closer to coming back.
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