STEVE RINGMAN / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Series Preview: Detroit Tigers vs Seattle Mariners

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After sweeping the Chicago White Sox the (12-10) Detroit Tigers host the (8-15) Seattle Mariners for a three game series. The Tigers are on a four game win streak and are 7-3 in their last ten games. The Mariners are 4-6 in their last 10 games and have won just 3 games on the road this season. However, the Tigers face last seasons Cy Young winner King Felix in game one and they have to tango with rookie sensation Michael Pineda in game three. Not an easy task!

 

SERIES PITCHING PREVIEW:

Tuesday, April 26, 7:05 EST, Comerica Park
Felix Hernandez, RHP

Stats
2-2, 3.38 ERA

Career statsVS

Phil Coke, LHP

Stats
1-3, 2.75 ERA

Career stats

Wednesday, April 27, 7:05 EST, Comerica Park
Erik Bedard, LHP

Stats
0-4, 7.71 ERA

Career statsVS

Justin Verlander, RHP

Stats
2-2, 3.50 ERA

Career stats

Thursday, April 28, 1:05 EST, Comerica Park
Michael Pineda, RHP

Stats
3-1, 1.78 ERA

Career statsVS

Brad Penny, RHP

Stats
1-2, 6.35 ERA

Career stats

 

INJURY UPDATE:

DETROIT

Guillen, Carlos (LF) 04/20 15-day DL TBD Left knee soreness Worked with personal therapist in mid-April.
Martinez, Victor (C) 04/20 15-day DL May Right groin strain Placed on DL April 19.
Zumaya, Joel (P) 04/20 60-day DL TBD Right elbow inflammation To rest until June 1 before throwing again.


SEATTLE

Aardsma, David (P) 04/23 15-day DL Possibly May Torn hip labrum Made second Triple-A rehab appearance April 22.
Gutierrez, Franklin (CF) 04/23 15-day DL Late April or May Irritable bowel syndrome Diagnosed with IBS on April 23. Taking medication.
Kelley, Shawn (P) 04/23 60-day DL Possibly June 1 Right elbow surgery On schedule to return June 1 as of April 22.
Moore, Adam (C) 04/12 60-day DL Likely out for season Torn meniscus in his right knee Underwent surgery April 12.
Robertson, Nate (P) 03/21 Out Indefinitely Possibly May Left elbow surgery Underwent surgery March 16.
Robles, Mauricio (P) 03/31 60-day DL TBD Left elbow surgery Placed on DL March 30.


WHO’S HOT:

DETROIT:

  • Brennan Boesch has hit .526 in his last 19 at-bats. He also currently boasts a team high .348 batting average this season.

  • Alex Avila is batting .412 over his last 17 at-bats–raising his average this season to .321. His 14 RBI and 3 HR are second to only Miguel Cabrera.

 

  • Miguel Cabrera is batting .429 in his last 21 at-bats and .338 on the season.

 


SEATTLE:

  • Ichiro Suzuki continues to swing a hot bat this season. In his last seven games Suzuki is batting .433 over 40 at-bats.

  • Michael Pineda is off to a sensational start this season. In 25 1/3 innings Pineda has posted a 3-1 record with a 1.78 ERA. Opposing batters are also  hitting just .202 against Pineda this season.

 

 

WHO’S COLD:

DETROIT:

  • Magglio Ordoñez has struggled this season–hitting just .196 this season. In his last 18 at-bats Maggs has hit just .167.

  • Brad Thomas has given up more runs (8) than he has pitched innings (6 2/3). His 10.80 ERA and 2.25 WHIP are…shall we say less than stellar.

 

 

SEATTLE:

  • Chone Figgins continues to struggle this season. He is batting just .200 his last seven games and ___ on the season.
  • Erik Bedard might be knocking off some rust this season but the results are terrible. Bedard has allowed 7 homers and has walked 11 in just under 19 innings this season.He currently sports a 7.71 ERA and 1.98 WHIP.

 

SERIES SIX PACK WITH SODOMOJO.COM

 

JAYRC: Michael Pineda has been outstanding so far this season. Can  his success be attributed to the wonders of small sample size or is Pineda the real deal?

HC: Quick and to the punch: Real deal. He’s got a really inconsistent change-up that worries some people and leads to the idea that he could really struggle against left handers. But so far he’s just overwhelmed them with his fastball. I think that an adjustment period maybe coming in a few weeks but overall he’s going to be very good.

JAYRC: I know it’s only late April but how much longer does the Erik Bedard experiment last if he continues to struggle?
HC: I get this question so much. Bedard, so long as he is healthy, will get plenty of chances. Remember he hasn’t pitched but maybe 20 innings in the last 18+ months so there is some rust there. Keith, a write with us, wrote a great article on it late last week
JAYRC: How much longer of a rebuilding process do the Mariners have ahead of them?

 

HC: This is kind of a loaded question. Because you say 2 years, fans expect 2 years. But if you say more than 3, fans get antsy. It’s really kind of a sucky situation for the front office to be in, despite a heck of a job they’ve done so far.

Tom McNamara and Jack Zduriencik have done a great job with building a pitching staff and they have some great youngsters down in the minor leagues up and coming. The true question lies with some of the bats and if they develop. Johermyn Chavez, Rich Poythress, Greg Halman, Carlos Peguero, ect… The sooner they can start developing some hitters the sooner they will actually be able to compete.

HC: Is Ryan Raburn a permanent fixture in Detroit’s outfield?

JAYRC: Lately Ryan Raburn has been our everyday second baseman–largely in part to the early season struggles of Will Rhymes.

Raburn has either previously played or possess the ability to play nearly every position on the diamond. How well he plays each position is another story. Regardless, his versatility and ability at the plate will keep him in the lineup one way or another for the next couple seasons.

HC: How big of a concern is the Tigers bullpen this year?

JAYRC: Aside from Brad Thomas and one bad outing from Brayan Villarreal the bullpen has been pretty solid this season. I have a lot of confidence in the late innings with Benoit and Valverde. Daniel Schlereth has looked impressive and Ryan Perry is back from the DL.

The Tigers also have several internal candidates down on the Farm. They have solid  late inning prospects in Chance Ruffin and Austin Wood. Robbie Weinhardt and Fu-Te Ni have pitched well before in Detroit and should see some time there again this season.

I am not concerned at all with our bullpen. The tools are there, some of the younger guys just need innings and experience.

HC: What is the expectation of the city of Detroit and the Tigers this year?

JAYRC: Detroit was thought of a .500 team by many folks this season. Perhaps one or two “experts” picked them to finish as high as second place. Regardless of the standings every season, the AL Central is a very competitive division.

I believe that the Tigers have the ingredients necessary to be a winner. However, V-Mart and Maggs must stay healthy and productive for Detroit to continue to score runs like they have been. I just don’t see guys like Boesch and Avila continuing to produce unless Ordoñez and Martinez are in the line-up–just to much pressure on them.

I still think that the division is a three team race between Minnesota, Chicago and Detroit. A lot can change in a few months, time will tell.

I’d like to thank Harrison at SodoMojo.com for sharing a six pack with me…

 

SERIES PREDICTION:

Sadly I see this as a trap series for the Tigers. Hopefully, I am wrong but I see the Tigers taking just one game from the M’s. Although the Tigers managed to score 21 runs on the Chi-Sox, runs will likely be at a premium when they face King Felix and Pineda. I am not sure how much longer the Tigers can continue to put up runs without Ordonez producing and with V-Mart on the DL. Again….hopefully I am wrong.

 

*Injury Updates and Pitching Preview information obtained from MLB.COM

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