Game 49, Angels at Mariners
King Felix vs. Jerome Williams, 4:15pm
After last night’s crushing collapse, the M’s send King Felix to the hill to try and get a win. Jerome Williams is a fascinating story, and he’s shown signs of improvement this year. He doesn’t strike many people out, but he’s cut back on walks while increasing his ground ball rate. It’s not sexy, but it’s been enough to run a FIP just under 4 in 53 innings. Garrett Richards, one of the Angels’ better prospects, looked set to take the #5 spot in the spring, especially after Williams suffered an injury in March, but instead Williams has been solid and Richards continues to be both extremely talented and somewhat frustrating in the PCL.
The M’s send their lefty line-up out today which is fine, but Williams has essentially no platoon splits. In over 500 innings, lefties have hit for a .328 wOBA off of him while righties are hitting….328. Righties have hit for more power while his K:BB ratio is nearly even against lefties.
1: Ackley (2B)
2: Saunders (CF)
3: Ichiro (RF)
4: Seager (3B)
5: Smoak (1B)
6: Jaso (DH)
7: Olivo (C)
8: Carp (LF)
9: Ryan (SS)
SP: Felix Hernandez
The big story today is that Brandon League’s lost his job as closer after last night’s meltdown. Doesn’t sound like they’ve named a replacement, but expect to see plenty of Tom Wilhelmsen and/or Steve Delabar for a while. No roster move of course as League’s just bumped to a set-up role, but you’ve got to like Stephen Pryor’s chances to head north in the coming months.
Carlos Peguero hit his 9th HR last night, and Casper Wells went 3-4 with two doubles and a HR against Tucson. The Rainiers are hitting the crap out of the ball, but pitching remains a problem.
The Mariners are playing today in the uniforms of the old Seattle Rainiers – part of “Turn Back the Clock Day” at Safeco. The retro-styled King’s Court adds another section today as well.
James Paxton couldn’t get anything going yesterday against Montgomery and then came out of the game with what’s being called a knee injury. Sounds like it may have been bothering him in several of his recent starts.