The Mariners close their season series with the Rangers this weekend with a four-game set in the DFW Metroplex. The Rangers have won nine of the 15 played thus far, including four of five in Texas. Since we last saw these guys a month ago, they've gone 11-15 and are coming off a 2-4 road trip vs. the White Sox and Angels.
The Rangers' offensive numbers are still anemic, with only OF/DH Shin-soo Choo among active Ranger players holding an on-base percentage over .350 and only three Texans—Danny Santana, Willie Calhoun, and Elvis Andrus—batting over .270. It'd be a different story if Hunter Pence and Joey Gallo weren't injured, but they're both on the IL and won't be a factor in this series. They are considerably better at home, at 11 games over .500 vs. 15 under away from DFW.
Texas will start Lance Lynn in the opening game on Thursday, then Kolby Allard Friday; after that they haven't said, though ace Mike Minor would be in line to pitch Sunday. Saturday's spot may well go to rookie Brock Burke, who pitched in that slot against the White Sox last weekend and took a hard-luck loss in a 2-0 defeat. The Mariners will go with Felix Hernández in his second appearance after returning from injury, then Marco Gonzales, Tommy Milone, and Yusei Kikuchi. Felix was surprisingly good in his last start, 52⁄3 innings against the Blue Jays, but was robbed of a win by the ineffective relievers that followed him. Gonzales won his career-high 14th game his last time out, Milone was customarily mediocre against the Yankees, and Kikuchi followed up his brilliant complete-game-shutout effort in Toronto two starts ago with a dismal outing against New York and Masahiro Tanaka.
Mariners vs. Brock Burke (CAREER)
Mariners vs. Mike Minor (CAREER)
Rangers vs. Tommy Milone (CAREER)
Rangers vs. Yusei Kikuchi (CAREER)
|vs. AL West||30-34|
Who’s Hot & Not
Last ten games
.317/.333/.634, 5 XBH, 7 RBI
.229/.400/.314, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 3 SB
.146/.146/.317, 3 XBH, 4 RBI, 18 K
.158/.200/.211, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 8 K
.063/.167/.063, 0 XBH, 1 RBI, 12 K
Last 3 series vs. Seattle
|7/31/19||TEX 9, SEA 7|
|7/30/19||SEA 8, TEX 5|
|7/24/19||SEA 5, TEX 3|
|7/23/19||TEX 7, SEA 2|
|7/22/19||SEA 7, TEX 3|
|5/29/19||TEX 8, SEA 7|
|5/28/19||TEX 11, SEA 4|
|5/27/19||SEA 6, TEX 2|
Chris Woodward: Formerly a Mariners coach (2014-2015), Woodward is getting his first taste of big-league managing this year. He was third-base coach for the Dodgers the past three years under Dave Martínez, giving him valuable experience on a pennant-winner. Woodward is already considered to be a big improvement over the Rangers' previous skipper, Jeff Banister, by the Dallas faithful; Woodward is thought to give more thought to in-game strategic decision-making than Banister did, with more understanding of modern analytics.
Woodward also played briefly for Seattle, suiting up for 28 games as a Mariner in 2009-2010. He batted .221/.284/.244 as a utility infielder.
Shin-soo Choo: If you blinked, you missed him, but Choo was once a Mariner. In fact, he debuted here—the Mariners signed him as an 18-year-old out of South Korea in 2000, then after working his way up the minor-league ladder played 14 games with Seattle in 2005-06. This was the Bill Bavasi era, so what do you think happened with this promising young star-in-the-making from the far east? That's right, Bavasi traded him for magic beans (in the form of first baseman/DH Ben Broussard, who hit .260/.311/.413 in a year-and-a-half with the M's and retired in 2008). Isolating which one of Bavasi's trades and signings was the worst is an exercise in futility (there were so many awful deals) but this one has got to be near the top, especially if you view it in tandem with a separate trade Bavasi made with the same team a few weeks earlier, sending a different future All-Star, Asdrubal Cabrera (ironically, also a Ranger this year), for a different aging first baseman/DH (Eduardo Pérez) that would retire even before Broussard did. Choo and Cabrera went on to play over 3,000 Major League games (and counting) between them, bat .273, hit 358 homers, score 1,642 times, drive in 1,435 runs, and play in six postseasons.
|Texas Rangers||(1972 - present)|
|League Champions:||2010, 2011|
|Division Titles:||1996, 1998, 1999, 2015, 2016|