Game #89: Seattle Mariners (39-49) vs. Boston Red Sox (54-36) | 7:10 pm | Safeco Field
Pitching Match-Ups: RHP Felix Hernandez (8-4, 2.69) vs. LHP Jon Lester (8-4, 4.41)
Radio: 710 ESPN Seattle and the Mariners Radio Network…also available at Mariners.com (for subscribers to MLB.tv)
TV: The game will be televised in HD on ROOT Sports…also available via MLB.tv (outside Mariners TV territory)
Live Stats: MLB Gameday will provide a live box score with pitch-by-pitch data
Starting Lineups: Starting lineups will be posted on MarinersMedia.com and Twitter when they become available
Game Information: Mariners | Red Sox | Mariners-Red Sox History
Here are tonight’s Game Notes & Statistics:
Mariners radio broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith checks in with a notes-filled update from Arlington, Texas after last night’s 9-2 win over the Rangers…
Tuesday night started a six-game road trip against two clubs that were a combined 25 games over .500, while the Mariners, at 35-47, were 12 games behind the break-even mark. Add to that a recent series loss to the hapless Cubs, a Rangers team that had won 10 of its last 13, and a Mariners starting pitcher with the most regular season losses in Rangers Ballpark history without a victory (0-7, 9.91 ERA).
The Mariners threw all of that to the Texas wind and thumped the first-place Rangers 9-2 in front of a crowd of nearly 40,000. It marked the most runs the M’s had scored in Arlington since a 21-8 thumping on May 30, 2012 and the first win in Texas in 2013.
- With his first-inning home run, Raul Ibanez became the first player dating back to 1916 to record 20 home runs before the All-Star break in an age 40-or-older season. He now has the 6th most homers in MLB history in a 41-or-older season, passing Stan Musial. With 21 home runs, Dave Winfield is next on the list.
- After back-to-back blasts from Ibanez and Kendrys Morales Tuesday night, the Mariners have gone back-to-back five times this season. Ibanez has clubbed the first homer in four-of-five occasions.
- I had heard some rumblings through the blogosphere that Brad Miller was rough around the edges defensively at shortstop. While four games doesn’t make a career, he’s looked sharp at short so far and helped turn four double plays Tuesday night. His arm has looked strong, his range has been good, and he seems to be lining up in the right spots (tip of the cap the bench coach Robby Thompson and Brendan Ryan).
- It really struck me last night that there almost can’t be a Major League team younger up the middle than the Mariners. Miller is the old man of the group at 23, while Nick Franklin and Mike Zunino check in at 22. (Franklin’s beard is well ahead of his years, though.) The trio has played a combined 50 games in the Majors.
King Felix and the M’s face lefty Derek Holland Wednesday night in Game 2. The “Dutch Oven” has an improved slider in 2013 which has accounted for 70% of his 97 strikeouts, compared to 31% last season. Holland is 8-2, 3.39 ERA lifetime against the M’s, but last night should’ve taught us something about that, and the last time he faced the Mariners in Texas he allowed 8 runs in 1.2 innings.
Here is a fun note from the Elias Sports Bureau:
The Mariners were off yesterday, well sort of, using most of the day to travel to Texas to begin a 6-game road trip vs. the Rangers tonight in Arlington (5:05 pm PT/7:05 pm CT). Here are some tidbits to get you ready for the game…
- Mariners.com writer Greg Johns and Rangers.com scribe T.R. Sullivan combined to write a fun story about the unique relationship between former teammates Felix Hernandez and Adrian Beltre.
- Greg Johns also provides a little more of a history lesson about the number Raul Ibanez is putting up during his age 41 season.
- Tacoma News Tribune staff writer Todd Dybas was on hand to see Taijuan Walker make his second Triple-A start. In two starts with the Rainiers, the 20-year-old has yet to allow a run in 11.0 innings (5 H, 4 BB, 12 SO).
- It was a good day for Mariners minor leaguers, as All-Star teams were announced for the Pacific Coast League (AAA) and Southern League (AA).
- OF Julio Morban, OF James Jones, P Roenis Elias, RHP Taijuan Walker named Southern League All-Stars.
- OF Carlos Peguero, LHP Brian Moran named to Triple-A All-Star team.
- Pulaski RHP Edwin Diaz (the Mariners 3rd round pick in the 2012 Draft) was named the Appalachian League Pitcher of the Week.
- The Mariners turn over the calendar playing their first game in the month of July today. Seattle was 15-11 in July last season.
Chasing Teddy Ballgame: Raul Ibanez hit his team-leading 19th home run of the season yesterday. It was also his 10th home run in June, tying his monthly career high from May 2009 when he was with the Phillies. Much has been made of Raul’s HR surge at his age (41), and for good reason. Raul’s 19 home runs in his age 41 season are already 6th-most in baseball history, tying him with Stan “The Man” Musial. Check out the list below. And it is not like this came out of nowhere, as Raul has hit 20 or more homers in 6 of his last 8 seasons!
- All-Star Primer: Earlier today we posted a pretty detailed explanation about the All-Star game selection process. There are a lot of interesting scenarios, including the player vote and who the manager for each team gets to select. Let’s just hope more than just one Mariners player makes the trip to New York City for the Midsummer Classic at Citi Field (July 16).
- Speaking of All-Stars: The Elias Sports Bureau (aka the best stats people around) have a pretty cool feature on ESPN.com that comes up with its best project for the American League All-Star team. At point, the Elias rating system projects three Mariners that should be All-Stars: RHP Felix Hernandez, RHP Hisashi Iwakuma and DH Kendrys Morales.
- Why the Turks? The Mariners and Cubs rolled back the calendar to the early 1900′s on Saturday with what has become an annual tradition, Turn Back the Clock Day. The Mariners wore the uniforms of the 1909 Northwestern League champion Seattle Turks. A few questions have been asked how the Turks nickname come to be, as the 1908 club was named the Siwashes and the Giants in 1910. Here is the best information we could find on the team nickname, which is pretty interesting stuff!
- Road Trippin: The Mariners hit the road (the friendly skies actually) for a 2-city, 6-game road trip with three-game series against the Texas Rangers and Cincinnati Reds. The Mariners will be making just their second trip to the Queen City (Cincinnati) ever, and first since 2002 when the Mariners swept the three-game series. This will also be the Mariners first trip to Great American Ball Park. This will be the Mariners first “new” stadium to play in since debuting at Nationals Park in 2011.
- Heat Wave: Temperatures are expected to be in the high 80′s and possibly low 9o’s over the next few days in Seattle. Ironically, the weatherforecast for Arlington, Texas is pretty similar, but there *might* be just a little bit more humidity. And although the team is not currently playign at Safeco Field, here is a bit of trivia for you. There have been 5 games played at Safeco Field with the game-time temperature above 90-degrees (last: 7/24/04 vs. Anaheim). The most recent “hot” game was 88-degrees July 7, 2010 vs. the Rangers.
Always a great feeling when you get to the ballpark after a game like last night. The Mariners beat the Cubs 5-4 on a walk-off single by rookie catcher Mike Zunino in the bottom of the 10th inning. The Mariners and Cubs play the second game of a three-game weekend series today at Safeco Field, with a special start time of 4:15 p.m. (televised on FOX).
- Today is Turn Back the Clock Day at Safeco Field, with the Mariners and Cubs wearing uniforms from the early 1900′s. The Mariners will be wearing the uniforms of the 1909 Seattle Turks, the winners of the Northwestern League Championship. Here is a short story with some fun facts pertaining to today’s game. And here is a picture of the uniforms being worn by both teams today. With temperatures expected in the low 80′s, it is a good thing the team’s won’t be wearing wool uniforms that were common in the early 1900′s.
- Walk-Off: Mike Zunino delivered a one-out, bases loaded single in the bottom of the 10th inning to lift the Mariners to a 5-4 come-from-behind victory over the Cubs last night. Seattle trailed 4-1 after the top of the 7th inning, but stormed back to push the game into extra innings and record the 3rd walk-off win of the season. Here is a fun stat from the Elias Sports Bureau about Zunino’s walk-off single:
- Firework Extravaganza: After the fireworks provided by Zunino with the 10th inning walk-off single, the first ever fireworks show at Safeco Field took center stage. It was a great show that lasted about 15 minutes, and received several oooohs-and-ahhhhs. Here is a great photo of the show from Mariners photographer Ben Van Houten.
- Scouting Report: The Mariners and Cubs are tied 5-5 in the all-time series heading into today’s game. Seattle faced Cubs ace Jeff Samardzija (5-7, 3.39 ERA). Samardzija is of course a former standout college football player at Notre Dame, but has turned into one of the best power pitchers in the National League, ranking 3rd in strikeouts this season (115, 9.73 K/9.0 IP). Only a handful of current Mariners have faced Samardzija, with Brendan Ryan going 2-for-4 with a walk and RBI, and Jason Bay 1-for-3 with a double. Here is the game preview courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com.
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The weather is heating up, the Cubs are in town and fireworks (yes, fireworks) are on tap tonight as the Mariners open a 3-game series vs. the Chicago Cubs at Safeco Field (7:10 p.m.). Here are some items of interest leading up to tonight’s first pitch vs. the Cubs…
- Miller Time: The Mariners have promoted shortstop Brad Miller from AAA Tacoma and he’ll make his Major League debut tonight batting 9th. Miller hit .356 (37×104) with 26 runs scored, 5 doubles, 1 triple, 6 home runs, 28 RBI, and reached base safely in all 26 games with the Rainiers since his promotion from AA Jackson on May 25. He leaves Tacoma with a 22-game hitting streak (.385/35×91), four-games short of the Tacoma franchise record. Earlier this week he was selected to play in the All-Star Futures Game. In 68 games with AA Jackson and AAA Tacoma this season, Miller has combined to bat .319 (82×257) with 12 doubles, 12 home runs, 53 RBI and a .920 OPS (.521 SLG, .399 OBP). In the field for Tacoma he made 22 starts at shortstop, 3 at second base and one at designated hitter.
- Cubbies in Seattle: The Cubs are making their third trip to Safeco Field, and first since 2010. The Mariners have visited historic Wrigley Field just once, back in 2007.
- Scouting Report: Cubs starting pitcher Travis Wood is having a pretty good season despite his 5-6 record. Wood ranks 3rd in the National League with a .198 opponent batting average, including a .143 (11×77) clip vs. left-handed batters. He has been the victim of poor run support this season, with the 6th-lowest run-support average in the NL (3.21). Here is a statistical preview of tonight’s game vs. the Cubs provided by Baseball-Reference.com.
- Fireworks: Don’t miss the first post-game fireworks shows in Safeco Field history following tonight’s game. The Mariners have partnered with Pyro Spectaculars, the same company who produces the New Year’s Eve at the Space Needle extravaganza, for these special shows set to music.
- 4:15 Tomorrow: Due to the game being carried on FOX (not on ROOT Sports), tomorrow’s game is at 4:15 p.m., which is a bit of an odd start time for a home game. Should be a pretty cool afternoon with both team’s wearing throwback uniforms from the early 1900′s. The Mariners will be wearing uniforms from the 1909 Seattle Turks of the Northwestern League.
- Welcome Back Jason: Good to have Cubs PR man Jason Carr back in Seattle. Carr was a member of the Mariners Baseball Information staff in the early 2000′s and was also a media relations representative for the Seattle-based Professional Bowler’s Association. One of the true good guys in the business.
We have an early game today, and after finishing the game notes in and getting everything ready for the game, sorry for the late update. Not much to report from last night’s game, but there was one roster move worth pointing out.
- Dustin Ackley was recalled from AAA Tacoma, and arrived just before the game after driving up I-5 from Cheney Stadium. Ackley is now an outfielder, and although is is not in today’s starting lineup, expect him to see some roaming the Safeco Field outfield soon. Todd Dybas of the Tacoma News Tribune caught up with Ackley following last night’s game to talk about his hitting approach and how he has turned things around.
- Mariners top pitching prospect Taijuan Walker made his Triple-A debut with the Rainiers, and pitched well allowing 3 hits in 6.0 scoreless innings. Ryan Divish of the Tacoma News Tribune wrote a nice column on Walker’s Triple-A debut, at the ripe age of 20!
- Tom Wilhelmsen looked to be himself once again on the mound, striking out the side in a 1-2-3 7th inning vs. the Pirates. Nice to see The Bartender shutting things down once again.
- Kyle Seager and Justin Smoak both homered for the Mariners, giving the club 87 home runs in the first 78 games of the season. The Mariners did not hit their 87th home run until July 28 last season (team game #103).
- Kyle Seager (Bob & Groz) and Nick Franklin (Wyman, Mike & Moore) were guests of 710 ESPN Seattle. Check out the archived podcasts by clicking on their names.
- Brad Miller went 1-for-4 for the Tacoma Rainiers, extending his hitting streak to 21 consecutive games. Miller is batting .379 (33×87) during the streak.
- Brad Miller and Taijuan Walker have been selected to play for the USA squad in the 15th annual SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game to be played July 14 at Citi Field in New York. And for the first time, fans will determine the final player on both the U.S. and World Team rosters by casting their votes in the All-Star Sunday Futures Finalists (#FuturesFinalists) ballot, available exclusively on MLB.com/futuresfinalist and the Club sites. Mariners farmhand and Jackson first baseman Ji-Man Choi is one of five finalists vying for a spot on the World Team.
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The Mariners open a 2-game series vs. the Pittsburgh Pirates tonight at Safeco Field (7:10 pm). The brief Interleague series will conclude tomorrow with an afternoon version of the King’s Court (12:40 p.m.), and then the Chicago Cubs come to town this weekend. Here are some brief notes catching you up on Mariners baseball…
A couple of good articles came across the old RSS feed that are worth sharing:
- Nick Franklin is the topic of a feature story in the Seattle Times by Bob Condotta
- Brendan Ryan’s defense (and personality) are the topic of a guest column by the Tacoma News Tribune’s Ryan Divish
- Taijuan Walker makes his Triple-A debut tonight, and Tacoma News Tribune columnist John McGrath sits down with the 20-year-old right-hander
- Raul Ibañez is an ageless wonder according to Seattle Times columnist Jerry Brewer
- Mariners.com had a nice story on the Mariners annual charity golf tournament to benefit Cystic Fibrosis
Pirates Scouting Report: The Pirates make their second trip to the Northwest, and first since a three-game series in 2007. A lot has changed since Pittsburg last visited Safeco Field, as the Buccos are currently 16 games over .500 at 46-30 (2nd place in AL Central) and have four straight games (and 5 of last 6). The Pirates feature probably the best pitcher you’ve never heard of this season, as left-hander Jeff Locke (raise your hand if you’ve seen him pitch) takes the mound with an NL-best 2.01 ERA. Locke is 6-0 with a 1.73 ERA in his last 14 starts and hasn’t lost since his season debut on April 7. Third baseman Pedro Alvarez is one of the hottest hitters in baseball, with home runs in each of his last four games, and is tied for 2nd in the NL with 19 home runs. When the Mariners and Pirates met back in early May, Alvarez (the former No. 2 overall pick in the 2008 Draft), was batting .168 with 5 home runs. In 37 games since, he is batting .295 with 14 home runs. And of course there is one of the most exciting players in all of baseball in Andrew McCutchen. Here is a statistical look at tonight’s series opener provided by Baseball-Reference.com.
Safeco Joe: It may be time to take away the nickname Safeco Joe…and just call him Smokin Joe Saunders. Over his last 5 starts the left-hander is 2-2 with a 1.82 ERA (7 ER, 34.2 IP) with 5 quality starts. Overall, Saunders is 5-7 with a 4.48 ERA, including a 4-2, 2.53 record at Safeco Field. He is 1-0, 3.46 ERA in 2 career starts vs. the Pirates.
Holman in the House: Former Mariners pitcher Brian Holman is visiting Seattle and will be around the ballpark the next few days. Holman made 81 appearances (80 starts) for the Mariners from 1989-1991, and is most known for his near perfect game April 20, 1990 vs. the Oakland A’s.
Reliever K/9.0 IP: When doing some game notes this morning, I stumbled upon the fact that three Mariners relievers are listed in the top 11 in the American League in strikeouts per 9.0 innings: Charlie Furbush (5th, 13.34), Danny Farquhar (6th, 13.03) and Oliver Perez (11th, 12.26). Very quietly, Perez is putting together a pretty phenomenal season out of the bullpen. Perez has the 3rd-best ERA (0.98) by an AL reliever (Jesse Crain – 0.52, Tanner Scheppers – 0.95), and has not allowed a run over his last 11.0 innings.
Ageless Wonder: There has been a lot of talk about Raul Ibañez and his home runs hit at the age of 41 lately…which is very cool. Raul leads the team (and ranks T6th in the AL with 17 home runs). He has been on a home run binge lately, with three longballs in the last two games. The best way to find statistics by age is through the Play Index at Baseball-Reference.com (I highly suggest becoming a subscriber). Baseball-Ref computes a players age for a season on June 30, so since Raul turned 41 on June 2, this is his age 41 season (even though he has hit 8 of his 17 home runs as a 41-year-old). Here is a listing of the most home runs hit by a player in their age 41 (or older) season. The record is 29 by Hall of Famer Ted Williams in his final season in 1960.
Down on the Farm:
- Taijuan Walker makes his Triple-A debut tonight for the Tacoma Rainiers.
- Brad Miller has a 20-game hitting streak for the Rainiers.
- Tacoma hitting coach Howard Johnson will be a coach for the USA squad in the 2013 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game.
- Mariners 2nd-round draft pick Austin Wilson made his pro debut for Everett last night going 1-for-2 with 2 walks (started at DH).
The Mariners will have an off day today, with many players and staff participating in the 28th Annual Mariners Care Golf Tournament to benefit Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at the TPC at Snoqualmie Ridge Golf Club. We’ll post some photos of the event later today. Meanwhile, here are some tidbits to catch you up on Mariners Baseball, with lots of fun facts about yesterday’s exciting walk-off 6-3 win over the A’s…
Kendrys Morales hit a pinch-hit walk-off 3-run home run yesterday to give the Mariners a 6-3 win and a series victory over the first-place A’s. Here are some fun facts about the Morales HR:
- It was just the second walk-off pinch-hit home run in club history, as Ken Phelps hit the only other walk-off HR as a pinch hitter on Sept. 3, 1986 vs. Detroit (tied 2-2, hit 2-out PH HR off Bryan Kelly in the bottom of the 9th inning).
- It was the first pinch-hit HR by a Mariners player since Luis Rodriguez, Sept. 14, 2011 vs. the Yankees (12th inning).
- It was the second walk-off HR (4th career walk-off hit) for Morales. His only other walk-off HR was when he was with the Angels, hitting a grand slam against the Mariners (off Brandon League) on May 29, 2010. Morales was injured during the celebration at home plate and missed a season and a half.
Not to be overshadowed by the walk-off homer by Morales was another clutch performance by Raul Ibañez. Ibañez hit a pair of home runs, including a 2-run home run in the first inning. Ibañez leads the team (and T6th in the American League) with 17 home runs. Raul also is also tied for the AL lead with 8 home runs in June (with Evan Longoria, Chris Davis, Adam Dunn).
Down on the farm, there were some notable performances worth sharing this morning…
- RHP Erasmo Ramirez struck out a season-high 10 batters in Tacoma’s 5-4 win over Fresno. LHP James Paxton struck out 11 in the previous game, marking the first time Tacoma’s starting pitchers struck out 10+ in back-to-back games since Aug. 14-15, 2001 vs. Colorado Springs (Brett Tomko – 12, Denny Stark – 11).
- SS Brad Miller homered and drove in 3 runs to extend hitting streak to 19 games for AAA Tacoma.
- OF Julio Morban was named the Southern League Player of the Week. Morban hit .400 (10×25) with 3 doubles, one home run, 9 RBI and 6 runs scored during the opening series of the second half against Mobile. Morban currently leads the league in batting with a .328 average and ranks 2nd with a .522 slugging percentage.
- First round draft pick DJ Peterson hit a grand slam (2nd pro home run) to lead Everett to a come-from-behind 6-5 win over Hillsboro. 1B Justin Seager hit a walk-off single to improve the AquaSox to 8-2 on the season.
- The Mariners minor league affiliates combined to go 7-1 yesterday, with the lone defeat being a 4-3 loss in 11 innings by the Peoria Mariners (Arizona League).
A few tidbits to catch you up on Mariners Baseball before team takes on the A’s in the rubber-match of the three-game weekend series at Safeco Field (1:10 pm)…
- The Mariners entered yesterday 1-32 when trailing after 6 innings and 3-42 when tied or trailing after 7 innings, but pulled off the biggest comeback win of the season. Raul Ibañez hit a game-tying 3-run HR in the 7th inning and Nick Franklin plated the go-ahead runs with a 2-run single in the 8th inning.
- It was a good night down on the farm, with several players turning in impressive performances:
- LHP Danny Hultzen started for the Peoria Mariners (Arizona League tonight)…he allowed 3 hits, 1 run and struck out 8 in 5.0 innings.
- LHP James Paxton struck out a season-high 11 batters in 6.0 innings tonight vs. Fresno (98 pitches/67 strikes).
- SS Brad Miller has extended his hitting streak to 18 games tonight for AAA Tacoma.
- 3B DJ Peterson hit his first professional HR in G#1 of Everett’s doubleheader vs. Hillsboro…the 3-run HR in the 6th inning proved to be the game-winner for Everett (3-1 win). You can here the audio call of the home run by Everett AquaSox radio announcer Pat Dillon.
- Tomorrow is the Mariners 28th Annual Mariners Care Golf Tournament to benefit Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at TPC Snoqualmie Ridge. Several current and former Mariners players are scheduled to play attend the event, including tournament co-chairs Raul Ibañez and Justin Smoak. Since 1986 the tournament has raised approximately $4.87 million for cystic fibrosis research.
- We stumbled upon www.minorleaguecentral.com, which provided some interesting figures about the youth on the Mariners current roster (and in the farm system). The Mariners active roster features 6 players under age 25 (Zunino – 22, Franklin – 22, Capps – 22, Triunfel – 23, Beavan – 24, Medina – 24). Seattle has 4 of the 15 youngest players currently on AL rosters. Additionally, Taijuan Walker (20) is the youngest player in the PCL (2nd-youngest in AAA) and Julio Morban is the 5th-youngest in the Southern League. LHP Luiz Gohara (Pulaski) is one of a handful of 16-year-olds playing minor league baseball stateside.
- Poster Boy: All kids 14 and under will receive this sweet Michael Saunders poster today.
- Mariners All-Access: This week on Mariners All-Access on ROOT SPORTS Jen Mueller gets ready to Turn Back the Clock. On Saturday, June 29, when the Chicago Cubs come to Safeco Field, the Mariners and Cubs will turn back the clock to 1909. Michael Morse and Justin Smoak got their hands on some bats and gloves from the early 1900s, and former Mariners greats Julio Cruz and Ruppert Jones also weigh in on how equipment has changed since their playing days. Brad Adam goes one-on-one with Kuma to find out about his life before coming to the U.S. and how he found baseball. There’s also a recap of Saturday’s United Way of King County All-Star Softball Classic that raised over $1 million to help homeless youth. This week’s Mariners All-Access debuts today at noon. The program airs again on Monday, 6:30am and 6:30pm, Tuesday at 6pm, Wednesday at 6:30pm, Thursday at 10pm and Friday at 6pm.
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“He likes to be up in those situations. I just like the way he plays so aggressively. He does it offensively, he does it defensively and he does it on the base paths. I just think you are a better baseball player when you play with no fear. And that’s what we’ve seen with him.”
- Eric Wedge talking about Nick Franklin
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