American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, July 1
(All times Eastern)
Seattle Mariners (45-38) at Houston Astros (36-48), 8:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Seattle - Hisashi Iwakuma (5-4, 3.48)
Houston - Jared Cosart (8-5, 3.60)
(SportsNetwork.com) - Seattle righty Hisashi Iwakuma tries to shake off a pair
of ugly starts on Tuesday when the Mariners continue a three-game series with
the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park.
Iwakuma gave up five runs in a no-decision in Kansas City two starts ago, then
was ripped for five runs and eight hits over four innings in a loss to Boston
on Wednesday that dropped him to 5-4 on the year to go along with a 3.48 ERA.
"I need to reflect on what I've done wrong and prepare for my next start,"
Iwakuma said afterward through interpreter Antony Suzuki. "I was just
mislocating in critical situations, and they took advantage. I did feel it,
but it's not affecting my pitching at all. I'm able to go through my routines,
and I'm responsible for the last two starts."
Iwakuma is 3-2 with a 2.72 ERA in six career starts against Houston, including
1-1 with a 5.27 ERA in two starts this year.
As bad as Iwakuma has been of late, Houston righty Jared Cosart has been just
as hot, going 4-0 over his last four starts and has allowed just one run in
his last two outings.
Cosart beat the Atlanta Braves on Thursday, limiting them to just a run and
six hits in seven innings, as he improved to 8-5, while dropping his ERA to
"When I'm throwing strikes I have a lot more confidence and obviously that's
what (the coaching staff has) been preaching," said Cosart, who is 7-3 with a
2.70 ERA in his last 12 outings.
"And with the mechanical stuff I've been doing I have a lot more confidence in
throwing strikes and just being able to trust my stuff and attack the
Cosart is 0-3 with a 2.50 ERA in three starts versus the Mariners, but
tonight's assignment against them will be his first at home.
Seattle drew first blood in this series on Monday, as Robinson Cano and Mike
Zunino each drove in three runs to lead the Mariners to a 10-4 rout. Cano hit
a three-run home run, Zunino added a two-run shot and James Jones had four
hits and scored twice for the Mariners, who have won eight of their last 10
Taijuan Walker (1-0), called up prior to the game, pitched six innings and
gave up three runs on five hits with a pair of walks and six strikeouts.
"Just take a deep breath and just go after them," Walker said of his game
plan. "Make them put the ball in play and let my defense do their job."
George Springer hit a two-run home run while Marwin Gonzalez added a solo home
run and two RBI for the Astros, who have lost six of nine.
Collin McHugh (4-7) allowed five runs on five hits and four walks over six
innings to drop his fourth straight start.
"I think I looked up at one point I had thrown 27 balls and 26 strikes," said
McHugh. "It's not the way I like to pitch. It was a struggle tonight for
Seattle has won six of its 11 matchups with the Astros this season.
07/01 10:29:09 ET