Game 94, White Sox at Mariners
Wade Miley vs. Jose Quintana, 7:10pm
Last night’s game may or may not have implications for the playoff race, but after one of the most unlikely comebacks the M’s have had in years, the explosion of joy and bewilderment showed that not everything needs some larger context. We’re M’s fans, so we know this well: we watch Felix, and as much as it’d be nice to watch him in a World Series, we can still take some pleasure in watching him carve up some random line-up in a meaningless-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things August game. Adam Lind has been pretty darn awful this year, but I will remember that home run, and the jump shot of his batting helmet, for many, many years.
Today the M’s get the White Sox *other* ace, lefty Jose Quintana. After signing with Chicago as a minor league free agent after being released by the Yankees, Quintana found his way to the big leagues and turned in a respectable but still marginal year in 2012. He didn’t miss bats, and his control was only so so, he wasn’t a ground ball guy… he didn’t allow many runs, but the whole thing looked very Blake Beavany. But whereas Beavan couldn’t adjust, Quintana grew in his role, honing his curve into a real weapon, and slowly but steadily gaining some fastball velocity. In 2014-15, Quintana accumulated about 10 fWAR, and he’s pitched at least 200 IP in his last 3 seasons. His raw stuff isn’t anything like Chris Sale’s, and he’s never going to be dominant in a Kershaw/Arrieta sense, but Quintana’s been incredibly valuable to the Sox, and he’s in the midst of another fine season.
While his curve is his out-pitch, and his one real swing-and-miss offering, he’s surprisingly effective with his 92-93mph fastball. Quintana’s command is such that his four-seamer ties batters in knots – batters are slugging .406 off of it lifetime, and just .352 this year, which is remarkable given that he throws it more often when behind in the count. He’s got a traditional 3/4 motion, and he’s got correspondingly traditional platoon splits, hence the repeat of this righty-heavy line-up.
After Mike Montgomery’s spotty but solid game, with Felix returning tomorrow, and with the M’s looking at some off-days soon, Wade Miley may be pitching for his spot in the rotation according to the TNT’s Bob Dutton. Wade LeBlanc had another quality start last night, so the pressure’s on Miley tonight.
1: O’Malley, SS
2: Gutierrez, RF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Cruz, DH
5: Lee, 1B
6: Seager, 3B
7: Iannetta, C
8: Martin, CF
9: Robertson, LF
The big story out of the minors today is that the M’s #1 draft pick Kyle Lewis came out of today’s game after injuring his knee in a collision at home plate. It happened in the 7th inning of today’s game against Tri City in Everett, and Jose Leal replaced Lewis in the OF for the 8th. No word yet on its severity.
Jordan Pries starts today for Tacoma against an old teammate, OKC’s Logan Bawcom. Bawcom came to the M’s org in the trade that sent Brandon League to Los Angeles. Bawcom pitched in the M’s org for a few years, but got DFA’d when the M’s signed Justin Ruggiano in 2014. He re-signed with Seattle last year, but joined the Dodgers org as a minor league free agent this year. Tacoma beat OKC 5-4 in 12 innings last night, walking off the Dodgers on a DJ Peterson single. The R’s fell behind 4-3 in the top of the inning, but scored 2 in their half of the frame to win again – they’re now 54-40.
Sean Newcomb shut down the Jackson Generals in a 5-0 win for Mississippi. Last year’s #1 overall pick Dansby Swanson homered off of Ryan Yarbrough.
Speaking of shutouts, Visalia blanked Bakersfield 2-0. Both Bakersfield and Jackson are off today.