I said in my preview of the Tigers series that if the Mariners could win the next two series, they’d find themselves with a .500 record or better. They overcame Miguel Cabrera and some tough pitching matchups to win that series, 2-1, and now will try to do the same against the 2-11 Orioles. They’d love a sweep here, and that seems a good possibility, but things don’t always work out that way.
Who Would You Rather Have
Player pick in BOLD. (This is another one where I don’t know the team incredibly well, especially the pitchers. And Felix is facing the one guy I know about, so that takes away the one easy choice. Disagreements and discussion welcome.)
C: M’s Rob Johnson O’s Matt Wieters
1B: M’s Casey Kotchman O’s Luke Scott. Could go either way here. Scott’s a more proven but not exceptional power guy, Kotchman seems to be coming around and has the defense. Also Garrett Atkins here and elsewhere, who’s a decent bat.
2B: M’s Chone Figgins O’s Julio Lugo. I’d probably take Brian Roberts if he were healthy though. Nice to not have to face him.
3B: M’s Jose Lopez O’s Ty Wiggington. Wiggington’s playing alright this year, but he’s really more of a very good bench guy. Tejada’s there too. Not sure if he helps.
SS: M’s Jack Wilson O’s Cesar Izturis. Wow, again. Lots of good field, no hit shortstops in the AL this year. There’s really no good option here, unless you’re turning a double-play, in which case they’re both decent choices.
LF: M’s Milton Bradley O’s Lou Montanez. They also have Scott, Reimold and Pie who could conceivably be in the outfield for this series from what I can tell. Pie sounds nice.
CF: M’s Franklin O’s Adam Jones. Orioles fans would probably disagree, but I’m not an Oriole fan, and they don’t know how amazing Franklin is, especially right now.
RF: M’s Ichiro O’s Nick Markakis. I’d love to have Markakis in our outfield. He’d be a great fit, and I’d take him over Bradley. Not over Ichiro though, since we’re going by position.
DH: M’s Griffey O’s Nolan Reimold. These are becoming kind of predictable.
Poor Orioles. They have some potentially great young players, and some who are pretty great already. It just so happens that at most of those spots, the Mariners have a player who’s as good or better. Mariners 7-2, although at least two spots are pretty much pick ’ems.
Monday: M’s Doug Fister O’s Brad Bergesen. Neither of these guys are too special, but at least Fister is coming off a good start. Bergesen has given up 15 hits and 10 ER in a little over 7 innings so far.
Tuesday: M’s Jason Vargas O’s David Fernandez. Take Bergesen’s season line and either cut it in half or double it to make it better, and that’s about what Fernandez has. Matthew at LL compares him to Aardsma, in that he mostly has a decent high fastball and little else. I know nothing more than what I’ve written here.
Wednesday: M’s Felix O’s Kevin Millwood
Closer: M’s David Aardsma O’s Jim Johnson? Mike Gonzalez? Each has a save, the only two for the whole team. Johnson also has blown two.
That’s 4-0 Mariners on the pitching, although the first few starting match-ups are pretty much toss ups. I feel better about Fister and Vargas pitching well right now than I would about Bergesen and Fernandez as an Oriole fan. This series is extremely sweepable.