Jamie Moyer’s Notebook: San Diego Padres Vs. Seattle Mariners May 12, 2015


Pitching Matchup: Ian Kennedy (2-1, 5.03 ERA) vs. James Paxton (0-2, 5.08 ERA)

Kennedy: The reliable Ian Kennedy has gotten off to a bit of a slow start in 2015, but he turned it around in his last start, throwing seven innings of one run ball against the World Series Champion San Francisco Giants. The thirty year-old right hander has never thrown a single pitch against the Seattle Mariners, so don’t be surprised if he gets roughed around a bit in the opening innings. However, don’t be surprised if the solid veteran Kennedy makes the Mariners work hard for three or four runs.

Paxton: The young phenom out of Canada has left the Mariners with quite a bit to desire in the opening months of the season, but has settled down significantly in his last two starts. Boasting a 6.86 ERA after his first four games, Paxton has allowed only four runs in 14 innings in his last two outings. Manager Lloyd McClendon and the ball club will look to Paxton for another solid effort today, as the captain and his crew continue their efforts to right the ship in 2015.

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Padres Notes: The fans at Safeco Field get their first look at the new and improved San Diego Padres today, as Matt Kemp and Co. come into Seattle looking to build on their 17-16 record. Offseason acquisitions Justin Upton and Wil Myers have been heating up lately, hitting .333 with 3 homers and 14 RBI between the two of them over the last 10 games. Stacked with dangerous right-handed bats, the Padres’ lineup will be looking to feast on any mistakes that James Paxton makes.

Mariners Notes: In last weekend’s series against the Oakland Athletics, the Mariners got their first victory of more than three runs this season. Facing a tough opponent in Kennedy, the Mariners will look to scratch and claw the righty out of the game and take advantage of San Diego’s bullpen. Robinson Cano has been heating up since an 0-17 stretch at the end of April, posting a .333 average and four RBI in his last ten games. With the lineup producing more runs so far on this home stand, I expect some good performances from the middle of the order today.

3 Things to Watch For:

1. Robinson Cano hits HR #2

May 10, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano (22) gets an RBI on a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning against the Oakland Athletics at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

Since joining the Mariners, Robbie has hit for much less power than during his Yankees days. That being said, he has been extremely consistent in the middle of the order for Lloyd McClendon and is certainly capable of hitting home runs. Number 24 has not homered since April 14, so I say it’s about time for the All-Star second baseman to put one in the bleachers.

2. The Bullpen Continues to Improve

After a tough series for the ‘pen in Anaheim, the boys in left field allowed only two runs in 12 innings against the Athletics last weekend. With the additions of Joe Beimel and Mark Lowe, and the return of Tom Wilhelmsen, the bullpen is now seven men deep just like during their impressive 2014 season. I expect the guys to continue to improve, and to look more like the best bullpen in the league for the rest of 2015.

3. James Paxton Dominates

We have all been waiting for James Paxton to put it all together for an entire start. Unfortunately, the lanky left-hander has experienced a couple of minor growing pains in the early goings of 2015. His last two starts have been a lot better, though he has still given out five free-passes in those 14 innings. If Paxton can pound the strike zone and attack the Padres hitters early tonight, we might just get that performance that we have all been waiting for.

Last Game’s Predictions (A’s vs. M’s May 10, 2015):

1. Nelson Cruz Goes Deep–OUT

The “Boomstick” went 1 for 4 on Mother’s Day and scored a run, but unfortunately he did not leave the yard.

2. Logan Morrison Stays Hot–OUT

LoMo simmered down a tad on Sunday, going without a hit in four at-bats. Morrison did hit a couple of balls hard, but as has been the theme for the first baseman in 2015, they went right at someone.

3. Mariners Get to Chavez Early and Often–HIT

The Mariners scored four runs off Jesse Chavez in 6.2 innings of work, scoring three in the fourth inning and one more in the fifth. Chavez hung in there despite the four runs, allowing only five hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.

Outs: 2     Hits: 1

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