Game 158, Mariners at Rangers
King Felix vs. Alexi Ogando, 1:11pm
Happy (final) Felix Day!
This season hasn’t gone according to plan, unless the plan itself is terrible. Only Felix and Pineda have had full seasons and lived up to expectations. Everyone else has battled inconsistency, injury, and general lack of skill. I’m really glad that we get to watch Felix every five days, and I’m glad he seem to really like playing for this team, and while it’s trite to wish that we had a better supporting cast around him, it’s also not wrong. I want to skip ahead and see Felix playing for a contending M’s team, but on days like this, it’s sort of hard to see how to get from here to there.
The M’s face Alexi Ogando, the Rangers rookie, and a compact version of Michael Pineda. Both Ogando and Pineda feature plus fastballs from the right side, and also throw a slider. Both have a change that’s a work in progress which they go to rarely, and both are fly ballers. Ogando’s done exceptionally well against righties, but has struggled with HRs to lefties. It’s a tiny sample for both, but in some sense Ogando’s season is what we thought a great Pineda season would look like. Instead, Pineda FIP’s about the same against both lefties and righties, while Ogando’s got the big platoon splits many feared we’d see from Pineda. Pineda’s been more dominant – his K%, contact rate and K:BB ratio easily beat Ogando’s. But Ogando’s been just as valuable by limiting walks and by being tougher on righties than Pineda.
The M’s have attempted to stack their line-up with lefties to take advantage of Ogando’s relative weakness, but that means we get more Adam Kennedy. Hmmm.
2: Seager (SS)
4: Carp (LF)
5: Smoak (DH)
7: Kennedy (1B)
8: Robinson (CF)