Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#961 Seattle Mariners 10 vs.
#962 Minnesota Twins -160
Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 1:10pm EDT
Written by Chris Kubala

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A pair of American League teams in drastically different situations close out a set in the Twin Cities. The Seattle Mariners are on the road for the finale of a three-game set with the Minnesota Twins Thursday afternoon. In the opening game of the series, it was Minnesota rallying for a 6-5 victory on Tuesday night. First pitch in the contest was scheduled for 8:10 pm ET.

Seattle Mariners Continuing to Fall Apart

Seattle started the season like gangbusters, winning 13 of their first 15 games: since then, they are 15-40 after giving away Tuesday’s series opener. The Mariners entered Wednesday in the basement of the AL West, 19 games behind the Astros. Seattle got three hits from Domingo Santana (two runs) while Mallex Smith (two runs) and Kyle Seager (RBI) each added a pair in the loss. Mike Leake turned in a quality start, throwing seven innings, allowing three runs on six hits with no walks and six strikeouts, but ended up with a no-decision. Brandon Brennan (2-5) took the loss in relief: he allowed three runs on two hits with a walk without retiring a hitter.

Yusei Kikuchi is on the mound for his 15th major league start for the Mariners after coming over from Japan. He is 3-4 with a 4.99 ERA, a 1.422 WHIP, 20 walks and 51 strikeouts over 70.1 innings of action this year. Kikuchi took the loss in his last start, which came Saturday on the road against the Angels. He threw 3.1 innings, allowing seven runs (six earned) on nine hits with three walks and one strikeout as the Mariners were drubbed 12-3. Kikuchi is 0-3 with a 14.40 ERA, a 3.50 WHIP, six walks and two strikeouts over 10 innings in his last three starts. He beat the Twins in his lone career start against them, which came May 19. In that contest, he threw six innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on five hits with two walks and six strikeouts in a 7-4 Mariners win. Kikuchi makes his first career start at Target Field in this contest.

Minnesota Twins Look to Keep Mashing, Extending AL Central Edge

Minnesota needed a late rally but came up with the timely hits to win for the fourth time in five games Tuesday night. The Twins entered Wednesday with a 10.5 game advantage over the Indians in the AL Central race. Minnesota got three hits in the game from Jorge Polanco (run, RBI) while Jason Castro (his eighth) and Jonathan Schoop (his 12th) each homered in the victory. Martin Perez recorded a no-decision as he allowed four runs on six hits with three walks and seven strikeouts over five innings. Matt Magill (2-0) earned the win with a scoreless eighth while Trevor May worked the ninth for his first save of the year.

Michael Pineda makes his 13th start of the year for the Twins in this contest hoping to improve his numbers a bit. He comes in 4-3 with a 5.34 ERA, a 1.25 WHIP, 11 walks and 53 strikeouts over 64 innings of work this season. Pineda recorded a no-decision in his last start, which came Friday at home against Detroit. He allowed three runs on eight hits with no walks and three strikeouts over five innings in an eventual 6-3 Twins victory. Pineda is 1-0 with a 4.76 ERA, a 1.00 WHIP, two walks and 12 strikeouts over 17 innings in his last three starts. He is 2-1 with a 5.18 ERA, a 1.274 WHIP, six walks and 23 strikeouts over 24.1 innings in four career starts against the Mariners. Pineda is 1-3 with a 5.91 ERA, a 1.292 WHIP, five walks and 39 strikeouts over 45.2 innings in nine career starts at Target Field.

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Seattle has been a train wreck since the middle of April as their winning percentage since that 13-2 start is a dismal .273 over the last 55 games. While that’s a decent batting average, it’s a lousy winning percentage to have on your resume. The Mariners are likely going to be wheeling and dealing going into the deadline so that means Jerry DiPoto gets to burn up the phone lines again. In this one, Kikuchi has been a dumpster fire in his last three starts as his ERA is skyrocketing. Pineda hasn’t been great but he’s backed by a Twins offense that entered Wednesday on pace for a franchise record 317 homers with 127 in the first 65 games. Factor in Seattle’s bullpen being 28th in the majors in win probability added and this one seems to point firmly in Minnesota’s direction.

Prediction: Minnesota Twins -175

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Seattle continues to struggle on the mound and that’s a major reason why the team has fallen apart. The Mariners are 29th in the majors with a 5.31 team ERA and a 1.46 WHIP, which more than offsets the fact that they are 10th in runs per game with 5.14 per contest. There is plenty of power on both sides in this one as the teams are tied for the major league lead with 127 homers. The difference is on the mound as the Twins are eighth in the majors with a 3.99 team ERA. Can Seattle find a way to slow down the AL Central leaders?

The over is 3-0-1 in the Mariners’ last 4 during game 3 of a series, 4-0 in their last 4 vs. a team with a winning record, 7-1 in their last 8 Thursday games and 6-1 in their last 7 vs. American League Central opponents. Minnesota has seen the over go 3-0-1 in their last 4 vs. a team with a losing record, 5-0-1 in their last 6 on grass, 6-0 in their last 6 Thursday games and 7-1-3 in their last 11 overall. Given the Mariners’ inability to stop opposing teams from scoring and Minnesota’s penchant for putting up big numbers, this one ends up over the number.

Prediction: Over 10

Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. He keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college, the NHL, the NBA and college basketball and MLB.