American League Preview from The Sports Network|
Sunday, July 8th
(All times eastern)
Seattle Mariners (36-50) at Oakland Athletics (42-43), 4:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Seattle - Felix Hernandez (6-5, 3.26)
Oakland - Bartolo Colon (6-7, 4.05)
(Sports Network) - Shooting for back-to-back wins for the first time since the
middle of June, the Seattle Mariners play their final game before the All-Star
break against the Oakland Athletics at the Coliseum this afternoon.
Already 15 1/2 games out of contention in the American League West, the
deepest hole for any major league team entering play on Sunday, the Mariners
have won a total of just seven games since posting consecutive victories
versus San Francisco at Safeco Field on June 16-17.
On Saturday night Seattle took advantage of a complete-game effort by starting
pitcher Jason Vargas en route to a 7-1 victory on the road. Vargas scattered
seven hits, walked one and struck out six for his eighth win of the season.
While Vargas was keeping the A's in check, the offensive stars for Seattle
were Kyle Seager and Brendan Ryan, who combined for five RBI, while Casper
Wells accounted for two hits, including his fourth home run of the season.
"We scored seven runs, we pitched well and when you do that, everything is
going to click," said Vargas. "We made some great defensive plays. Brendan
and Seager over there, it was a pretty good night. They saved me some pitches,
that's for sure."
While Vargas was having his way on the mound, Oakland starter Jarrod Parker
wasn't so lucky as he permitted six runs -- five earned -- on six hits and a
couple of walks over 4 2/3 innings. Parker struck out six.
"I made a lot of mistakes," Parker said. "I was not happy with it. It's kind
of embarrassing, to be honest. Set the tone early. What you want to do as a
starting staff is be effective and attack early, and I did the opposite
As disappointed as he may be with his performance last night, the fact remains
that Parker is just the second pitcher since 1900 to allow one earned run or
less in 10 of his first 14 career starts.
Coco Crisp, hitting just .234 at the moment, delivered three of Oakland's
seven hits, another couple coming from Josh Reddick, who accounted for the
lone run for the hosts with a solo home run in the bottom of the first inning.
Even though he will probably continue to be a subject of trades with the
deadline approaching, Felix Hernandez is still on the Seattle staff and is
slated to pitch the final game of the first half of the season this afternoon
The right-hander has won two straight decisions but has just those two
victories since late May. On Tuesday Hernandez made it through just 5 1/3
innings against Baltimore, permitting four runs on eight hits, but also
striking out eight in a 5-4 loss at home to the O's.
One of the league leaders in strikeouts with 122, against just 32 walks over
116 innings, Hernandez bowed in his previous outing against Oakland this
season and now has a career mark of 13-5 with a 2.70 ERA in 24 games versus
Now with his fifth different team since 2007, Bartolo Colon will head to the
mound for Oakland today, shooting for his seventh win of the campaign.
The aging right-hander made it through six innings in his most recent outing
on Tuesday, allowing just one earned run on five hits and a walk, striking out
three versus Boston, but his efforts failed to earn him a decision.
Colon, already 1-0 after pitching seven scoreless innings against the Mariners
this year, is 16-12 with a 4.10 ERA during his career versus Seattle.
Oakland, which is nine games out in the AL West, continues to be the weakest
hitting team in the league with a collective average of just .225 while
Seattle is last in the AL in both on-base percentage (.293) and slugging
07/08 10:33:03 ET