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American League Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, May 29th (All times Eastern)

LA Angels of Anaheim (29-23) at Seattle Mariners (26-26), 10:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: LA Angels - Matt Shoemaker (2-1, 3.18) Seattle - Brandon Maurer (1-3, 6.99)

(SportsNetwork.com) - Brandon Maurer tries to duplicate Felix Hernandez's dominant performance from Wednesday, as the Seattle Mariners close out a four- game series with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Safeco Field.

Hernandez struck out nine and carried a shutout into the ninth inning on Wednesday in Seattle's 3-1 win. Mike Zunino homered and drove in three runs for the Mariners, who have won two of the first three in this series.

Hernandez (7-1) was charged with one run on four hits before giving way to Fernando Rodney with two outs in the ninth. Rodney recorded the final out of the game for his 13th save of the season.

"Right from the start, I thought he had great command of all his pitches. His fastball was really, really exceptional tonight," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said of Hernandez. "I think that's two times in a row you could see he's starting to get stronger. Pretty impressive. Breaking stuff was sharp. Just a great night for him."

C.J. Wilson (6-4) opposed Hernandez and allowed three runs on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts over 7 2/3 frames.

"He had some good stuff and pitched a terrific game for them," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said of Hernandez. "It was a typical pitchers' duel."

Now the Mariners turn to Maurer, who will try to stop a personal three-start skid. Maurer was banged around by the Houston Astros on Saturday for six runs and six hits in 4 1/3 innings, as he fell to 1-3 to go along with a 6.99 ERA.

"I had a long talk with Maurer about that," McClendon said. "Really what I'd like to see him do is just go out and worry about pleasing Brandon. Don't worry about pleasing me or anybody else. Just pitch your game, relax and have fun with it and see what happens. I don't know where it takes us, we'll see, but hopefully it takes us in the right direction.

Maurer is 1-1 in three games (2 starts) versus the Angels with a 7.15 ERA.

The Angels, meanwhile, will counter with righty Matt Shoemaker, who is 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA. Shoemaker did not get a decision on Saturday against the Kansas City Royals, as he allowed three runs (2 earned) and eight hits in five innings of his team's 7-4 loss.

Shoemaker was actually sent down to Triple-A Salt Lake after the start because the Angels needed some bullpen help. But when Sean Burnett was diagnosed with a torn UCL, the Angels recalled him to make this start.

"It's good to be back," Shoemaker said. "I definitely feel terrible for (Burnett), man. Just awful."

Shoemaker has faced the Mariners twice (1 start) and has yet to allow a run to them in 7 1/3 innings.

Seattle has won six of eight from the Angels this season.

05/29 10:27:55 ET