Game 84, Royals at Mariners

marc w · July 3, 2017 at 5:27 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Andrew Moore vs. Ian Kennedy, 7:10pm

This has always been one of my favorite days on the baseball calendar, as Tacoma always had its big fireworks show on the 3rd. It was always the biggest game of the year, and when we didn’t go (which was most of the time), I’d climb on my roof and try to see the fireworks to the south. Safeco’s now doing a big fireworks show on the 3rd as well, and from all reports, they do a great job. In any event, if you want to take in a ball game and see some fireworks, you’ve now got a few options locally.

Andrew Moore’s back up to make his second big league start. Honestly couldn’t have gone much better in his first game, so you have to think he can approach this game with some confidence. His opponents, the Royals, have been a terrible team at the plate, but of course that’s been true for a long time and it never seemed to slow them down. The heart of their order’s actually better than it’s been in a while thanks to a decent season from Eric Hosmer, and Lorenzo Cain’s still great, but awful seasons from Alex Gordon and Alcides Escobar saps the ability of the line-up to string hits together. Escobar’s always been bad, but Gordon’s face-plant is pretty remarkable for someone who hasn’t suffered some freak injury. He’s had nearly 300 PAs this year and both his OBP AND SLG% are under .300.

Ian Kennedy was always a curious free agent pick-up by KC, but he turned in a surprisingly decent year last year. Home run issues made him expendable in San Diego, and – not surprisingly – he gave up a ton for the Royals last year in the Year of the Home Run. Still, an insane strand rate and his second-best season BABIP led him to a sub-4 ERA. FIP was suspicious, but he helped a Royals team that desperately needed some stability in their rotation. So who was right, the ERA or the FIP? To the surprise of no one, FIP seems to have won this hypothetical battle. Kennedy’s K% is down, his walk and HR rates are up, and now not even a .201 BABIP can save his season. He’s probably one of those guys who’s always going to be a bit better than his FIP, but that’s exceedingly faint praise.

He’s been remarkably even platoon-wise, with an equivalent K rate and too many HRs against both. Lefties figure to have the advantage, but that’s not because Kennedy’s a righty-killer. He throws a rising 4-seam fastball at 92-93, a cutter, a curve and a change-up.

Andrew Moore averaged 91.4 MPH on his arrow-straight, rising four-seamer in his first start. He struggled to miss bats, but was around the strike zone and yielded tons of fly ball and elevated contact. That’s his game plan and all, but despite the great results, he gave up a lot of hard-hit balls. I’d love to see him get some more pop-ups and mishits against a poor offensive club.

1: Segura, SS
2: Gamel, LF
3: Cano, 2B
4: Haniger, RF
5: Seager, 3B
6: Valencia, 1B
7: Dyson, CF
8: Zunino, C
9: Powell, DH
SP: Moore

Casey Lawrence starts for Tacoma tonight. Game’s at 7, with the first pitch at 7:20. Other starters in the system include Lindsey Caughel, Anthony Misiewicz, Danny Garcia, and Andres Torres. Tyler Herb had the start of the night yesterday. Best batting line (tough call, as two teams were shut out) will go to Leonys Martin, who had 3 hits including a double.

Comments

One Response to “Game 84, Royals at Mariners”

  1. Longgeorge1 on July 3rd, 2017 9:40 pm

    Nice job by Moore. Other than Valencia a flat show.

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