(Cal League) Playoff Baseball
The Mariners are still mathematically alive in the playoff race, but so are all the teams in the AL Central coming into today, thanks to the weakness of their division. But, if youâ€™re hungry championship baseball a few weeks ahead of schedule, without all the nastiness of a well-funded juggernaut steamrolling the plucky young up-and-comer, might I recommend giving the High Desert Mavericks a tune-in?
The Mavericks are in game three of their division series against Rancho Cucamonga, hated Angels affiliate, and have thrown consecutive shut-outs at Mavericks Stadium. Stephen Hensley allowed three hits and a walk while striking out ten in the first game, and in the second, Mauricio Robles, who came over in the Washburn trade, had two hits, a walk, a balk, and eight Ks through seven innings. Michael Pineda, who has been remarkably dominant since coming off the DL, takes the mound for the Mavs as they try to extend their scoreless inning streak and sweep the series. The one cause for concern is that the offense has â€œonlyâ€ managed nine runs so far.
A likely championship scenario has the Mavs going up against San Jose, also looking for the sweep today. While the Mavericks have had by far the best hitting in the league, San Jose ranks at the bottom of hits, runs, and walks allowed, and combined for a league-high thirteen shutouts over the season. That series should begin on the 17th, and will undoubtedly be an interesting one.
Game time is the usual, 7:05 pm PDT.