Pittsburgh Pirates (25-24) vs. Seattle Mariners (25-24)
The 2023 MLB season goes on Friday, May 26, with the Pittsburgh Pirates facing off against the Seattle Mariners in the interleague showdown at T-Mobile Park in Seattle, Washington, and the first pitch is set for 10:10 PM ET.
Pittsburgh meets Seattle for the first time since 2019. They start a three-game series, and the Mariners are listed as -151 moneyline favorites with a total of 7.0 runs.
The Pirates are searching for their first series W since AprilAfter a tremendous start to their 2023 campaign, the Pittsburgh Pirates are having a horrible May. They’ve only won five of their previous 21 games overall, falling to 25-24 on the season. The Bucs just wrapped up a six-game homestand. They’ve lost two of three against the Arizona Diamondbacks and two of three versus the Texas Rangers.
Pittsburgh is scoring 4.33 runs per game (18th in the MLB) on a mediocre .244/.323/.394 triple-slash (.247/.320/.408 league average). The Pirates have slowed down at the dish lately, hitting just .238/.306/.320 with four home runs and 17 extra-base hits in the last two weeks and 369 at-bats.
ANOTHER IMMACULATE INNING pic.twitter.com/QTchyXbyK1— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) May 24, 2023
On the pitching side of things, the Bucs have amassed a strong 3.56 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, and .218 opposing batting average in the last couple of weeks (11 games, 96 innings pitched). Mitch Keller will get the starting call Friday in Seattle, and the 27-year-old right-hander is 5-1 with a shiny 2.44 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, and 77/14 K/BB ratio in ten starts (62.2 IP) this season. Keller has been spectacular over his previous three starts, allowing two earned runs on 11 hits and a walk while punching out 29 across 22 innings of work.
The Mariners continue a ten-game homestandThursday’s games have been excluded from the analysis, and the 25-24 Seattle Mariners were playing the hapless Oakland Athletics in the closing contest of a four-game set at T-Mobile Park. The M’s were looking for their fourth straight victory after beating the A’s 11-2, 3-2, and 6-1 through the first three contests of the series.
Seattle had won seven of its last 12 games prior to Thursday’s clash against the Athletics. During that stretch, the Mariners have posted a .252/.334/.408 slash line with 15 home runs and 18 extra-base hits across 412 at-bats.
that baseball belongs to the 'pen now 🤷♂️ pic.twitter.com/gF9GYlFDqb— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) May 25, 2023
George Kirby will take the mound Friday, and the 25-year-old righty is 5-3 with a sturdy 2.62 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, and 47/5 K/BB ratio in nine starts (58.1 IP) this season. Kirby stopped his three-game winning streak last Sunday, surrendering three earned runs on six hits and a walk through seven frames of work in a tough 3-2 defeat at the Atlanta Braves. He’s now in the 74th percentile in expected slugging percentage and the 88th percentile in barrel percentage.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
This should be a great battle between a couple of young hurlers who have pitched above all expectations so far this season. If both starters continue to impress, we’ll get a proper low-scoring affair.
The Pirates have struggled at the plate of late, and the Mariners haven’t impressed either. Hereof, I’m going with Pittsburgh +1.5, looking for the Bucs to keep it close in a low-scoring battle. The Pirates have gone 1-4 in their last five games, and two of those four losses have come by a run.
Full-Game Total Pick
Besides Austin Hedges, who’s 0-for-1 against George Kirby, the current Pirates haven’t seen the Mariners’ righty before. On the other side, the current M’s are 8-for-29 with a couple of home runs against Mitch Keller, who ranks in the 80th percentile in expected slugging percentage this season. Keller has piled up eight or more strikeouts in each of his last five starts.
Both bullpens have done a solid job in the last ten days (Pittsburgh 3.76 ERA and 3.43 FIP, Seattle 4.44 ERA and 2.44 FIP), so the under would be my best Pirates vs. Mariners betting pick for Friday night despite a 7.0-run line. I’m expecting Mitch Keller and Georgy Kirby to dominate.