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Seattle Mariners (35-42) vs. San Diego Padres (37-42) 12:40 PM PST
Jun 23, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners first basemanLogan Morrison
(20) hits a solo-homer against the Kansas City Royals during the eighth inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
1. Logan Morrison 1B
2. Robinson Cano 2B
3. Nelson Cruz RF
4. Kyle Seager 3B
5. Franklin Gutierrez LF
6. Austin Jackson CF
7. Brad Miller SS
8. Mike Zunino C
9. Taijuan Walker P
Notes: Facing the tough righty Jame Shields, the Seattle Mariners offense will need it’s A-game today. Franklin Gutierrez is featured in the five-hole, as Mark Trumbo is out of the lineup for the second game in a row. Guti has looked good since his return, and I expect him and the left-handed bats in the lineup to carry the M’s to another victory in San Diego.
San Diego Padres:
Jun 28, 2015; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres right fielderMatt Kemp
(27) hits a solo home run during the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
1. Matt Kemp RF
2. Derek Norris C
3. Yonder Alonso 1B
4. Justin Upton LF
5. Yangervis Solarte 3B
6. Will Venable CF
7. Jedd Gyorko 2B
8. Alexi Amarista SS
9. James Shields P
Notes: The San Diego Padres have had similar offensive struggles as the Mariners have in 2015, largely because of the unsatisfying numbers of Matt Kemp. Although Kemp has driven in 41 runs, he is batting only .247 and has hit only six homers this season. Matt has been playing excellent defense all season, but would like to hit for some more pop. Taijuan Walker will have to be careful with Kemp and the other power bats in the Padres lineup, or things could get out of hand quickly.
3 Things to Watch For:
1. Good To See You, Franklin Gutierrez
Since his return to the big leagues, Franklin Gutierrez has looked healthy, he has looked stronger, and he looks confident. We are talking about a guy that was a productive offensive outfielder, and had one of the best gloves in the game for several years. No longer a centerfielder, perhaps we will see Gutierrez recreate himself as a corner outfielder, staying more healthy and hitting for more power. A couple of hits tonight for Gutierrez, including an extra-base hit and an RBI or two.
2. Carson Smith Gets The Save
It’s been a few days since we have seen Carson Smith in a save situation. Since the Seattle Mariners pretty much never win two games in a row with ease, I expect tonight’s game to come down to the wire. Look for Smith in the bottom of the ninth tonight, and look for him to shut it down, with a pair of strikeouts as well.
3. Zunino Stays Hot
Since Edgar Martinez was hired as the new hitting coach for the Seattle Mariners, Mike Zunino has shown some noticeable improvement. In that span, Zunino is 6 for 25 with a pair of homers and three runs batted in. While those are still not satisfying numbers, they are much better than his season batting average of .167 and his 18 RBI in 2015. Mike Z has looked more confident at the plate, and I expect him to continue to improve under Edgar’s tutelage, with a pair of hits tonight, including at least one run batted in.
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Last Game’s Predictions:
1. Cano Knows–OUT
Although the Seattle Mariners scored five runs last night, Robbie Cano had nothing to do with it, going 0 for 4 and bringing his season average down to .238. While Cano has been hitting the ball harder in the last few weeks, things have still not fully clicked for the 24-million-dollar-man.
2. Montgomery Is Solid–HIT
Wow, what can I say? Monty did way more than throw a quality start, putting together a complete-game, one-hit shutout of the Padres for his second straight complete game shutout. The young lefty has been an incredibly pleasant surprise while filling in for the injured James Paxton.
3. Seth Smith Checks In–OUT
It’s funny, because the Seattle Mariners actually scored some runs last night, but the two guys I expected to play well didn’t do snot. Smith joined Robinson Cano in in the 0 for 4 parade, but all is well, the M’s won.
Hits: 46 Outs: 72 Batting Average: .390