American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, August 6th
(All times Eastern)
Toronto Blue Jays (52-60) at Seattle Mariners (52-60), 10:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Toronto - Josh Johnson (1-8, 6.60)
Seattle - Felix Hernandez (11-4, 2.30)
(Sports Network) - Felix Hernandez eyes his seventh straight winning decision
on Tuesday when the Seattle Mariners play the middle test of their three-game
series with the Toronto Blue Jays at Safeco Field.
Hernandez was denied his 12th win on Thursday in Boston, but through no fault
of his own, as he allowed just a run and six hits in seven innings. He also
struck out eight, but did not factor in the decision as the Seattle bullpen
gave up seven runs over the final two innings in an 8-7 loss.
"That's a really tough loss for us because of how Felix was pitching and we
couldn't get it done," said Oliver Perez, who absorbed the loss in that one.
Hernandez has been phenomenal of late for Seattle, allowing just two runs in
his last four starts, while not allowing more than two in and of his last
seven. He is 11-4 on the year and leads the American League with a 2.30 ERA.
While the former AL Cy Young Award winner has pitched to a 1.41 ERA over his
last seven starts, Toronto's Josh Johnson is in the midst of a miserable
stretch that has seen him lose six consecutive starts and surrender at least
five runs in his last four.
"We have to look at alternatives at some point if this continues," Blue Jays
general manager Alex Anthopoulos told the team's website. "It's really start
to start at this point. That's really the only way to characterize it. Right
now, he's going to make one more start and we'll see how he does but we'll
continue to evaluate it each time."
Johnson was again awful on Thursday in Anaheim, as the Angels ripped him for
seven runs (6 earned) and 10 hits in just 2 1/3 innings, dropping him to 1-8
on the year to go along with a 6.60 ERA.
Toronto drew first blood in this series on Monday, as Mark DeRosa's pinch-hit,
two-run single capped a three-run eighth inning and boosted the Blue Jays to a
3-1 win. Jose Reyes added an RBI single for Toronto, which has won two in a
R.A. Dickey (9-11) snapped a five-start winless stretch. The knuckleball
specialist allowed eight hits and fanned five to pick up his first victory
since July 1 against Detroit.
Casey Janssen retired the side in order in the ninth on three ground balls to
Hisashi Iwakuma (10-5) was charged with four hits and two runs over 7 1/3
innings. The right-hander had won his previous three decisions, but suffered
his first defeat since July 4 at Texas.
Seattle took two of three from the Blue Jays when these teams met up in
Toronto from May 3-5.
08/06 10:32:26 ET