Seattle Mariners (57-56 SU, 53-60 RL, 54-55-4 O/U) vs. Oakland Athletics (50-62 SU, 57-55 RL, 61-47-4 O/U)
MLB: Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 3:35 p.m. EST
The Line: Oakland Athletics -115/Seattle Mariners -105. Total: 9.5.
The Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners will wrap up a brief two-game series when they meet again at the O.co Coliseum in Oakland on Wednesday afternoon. Seattle is coming off a four-game set with Kansas City that was split by the two teams at two wins apiece. The Athletics had won two in a row heading into their opener against the Mariners on Tuesday.
Come over Yonder
The Mariners are hoping a change of uniform will provide a spark for newly acquired Yonder Alonso when they continue their pursuit of a postseason berth Athletics. Seattle is 4-3 on its current nine-game road trip and stand just one game behind the Royals for the second wild card spot in the American League. Alonso’s Seattle debut is coming against his former team after Oakland traded the all-star first baseman to the Mariners this past Sunday in exchange for minor league outfielder Boog Powell. Alonso has clubbed a career-high 22 home runs but has been in a spiral that dropped his batting average from just over .300 in mid-June to its current .266. Nelson Cruz leads the AL in RBIs with 84 and on pace for 100 for the third time in his career. First baseman Danny Valencia, expected to platoon with Alonso, is batting .307 with four homers in 28 games versus Oakland.
Right-hander Yovani Gallardo is taking the mound for Seattle on Wednesday. Gallardo is 5-7 with a 5.35 ERA through 21 appearances (17 starts) this season. The 31-year-old has not allowed more than three runs in any appearance since June 16, but he also hasn’t logged more than 5.2 innings during this stretch.
Go the distance
Sunday’s showdown between the Athletics and Angels did not exceed nine innings, but it still lasted just about forever. Oakland capped the longest nine-inning game in franchise history (four hours, 12 minutes) by scoring five eighth-inning runs for an 11-10 victory, thus improving to 6-3 over its last nine contests. Four different A’s players had multiple RBIs, including outfielder Mark Canha with three. The Athletics have won six of 11 meetings against the Mariners this season, including three of four in Oakland four months ago. Right fielder Chad Pinder is 9-for-17 during a four-game hitting streak.
Jharel Cotton will oppose Gallardo on Wednesday. The right-hander is a disappointing 5-8 with a 5.48 ERA through 16 starts this season. Cotton has turned in only one quality start since May 4, although he at least came close in his most recent outing against Los Angeles last Friday (five innings of work, three earned runs allowed).
The Seattle Mariners are:
- 10-4 in their last 14 road games
- 8-2 in their last 10 games against teams with losing records
- 5-2 in their last seven games against the American League West
The Oakland Athletics are:
- 24-51 in their last 75 games against the American League West
- 3-7 in Cotton’s last 10 starts
- 4-13 in their last 17 home games against Seattle
Gallardo has underwhelmed this season, but he has endured no such trouble against Seattle. The veteran is 2-0 in two starts against the Mariners, with a solid 2.12 ERA through 17 innings of work. Alonso will be itching for success against his former team, too, so the Athletics have to like their chances on Wednesday. The Mariners are 10-4 in their last 14 on the road, 8-2 in their last 10 on the road against losing opponents, 5-1 in their last six on the road against losing opponents, and 5-2 in their last seven against the American League West. Oakland is 24-51 in its last 75 against the American League West, 3-7 in Cotton’s last 10 starts, 1-5 in Cotton’s last six starts against the American League West, and 4-13 in its last 17 at home against Seattle. Look for those trends to continue.