It’s been a huge weekend of college football action, but it’s also been an exciting weekend of major league baseball play. People may start to turn their attention to football, but don’t sleep on this postseason race in baseball. The recent news that made noise across the baseball landscape was the trade of Justin Verlander to the Astros. The ‘Stros needed another starting pitcher and they went out and addressed it in a big way. It doesn’t automatically mean that the Astros are going to waltz to the World Series, though. If you are one of those people who believe in conspiracy theories, and the Astros will win the World Series because of the hurricane, then go ahead and place your bets. If they do win, it’s going to be because they have a talented roster.
The Mariners hope to be playing baseball in October, as they are looking for a wildcard to get into the American League play-in game. They haven’t been helping themselves lately, as they just recently snapped a five-game losing streak on Friday. The skid was a blow, putting them a few games back. They’re behind the 8-ball now, and back by a few games is bigger than it seems in this particular postseason race. There are now four teams in line ahead of them for the final wildcard. That doesn’t include the Twins and Yankees who currently hold the two play-in game spots.
Seattle must get something going, as the Mariners hope they got their last losing streak out of the way. With only about a month left in the regular season, there isn’t any room for another five-game losing streak. The loss of Felix Hernandez and Iwakuma are really hurting the Mariners here. Sure enough when the Mariners have a team competing for the postseason, Hernandez is unavailable. Oh, and a guy by the name of James Paxton is out of action, too. Due to injuries, Andrew Albers will get another start on Sunday. The Mariners would rather him not pitch, but their hand is being forced. Daniel Gossett will counter for the Oakland Athletics. Get our free Athletics vs. Mariners pick below.
Oakland Athletics vs. Seattle Mariners Pick
Daniel Gossett (3-7, 5.21 ERA) vs. Andrew Albers (2-1, 4.20 ERA)
Albers was recently acquired to give the Mariners some help in the starting rotation. It’s a nice opportunity for him to show something, but the Mariners would much rather not be watching him on the hump. Albers hadn’t pitched in the majors since last September as a member of the Twins, but desperate times call for desperate measures. Albers has been serviceable enough, with a 4.20 ERA in three starts. In his last start it was a mess due to errors, he was in for 8 runs but only 3 earned. Nevertheless, he allowed 11 hits across 5 innings of work which isn’t going to cut it.
He’s made more starts in his career in this stretch since 2013. He only made two starts in the majors with the Twins a year ago, and ten in 2013. Albers has been doing okay, but are the floodgates going to open on him? Gossett enters with an inconsistent ERA of 5.21. He lasted just 4.1 innings in his last outing against the Mariners. I expect some runs in this game, so I think a pick on the OVER is warranted.
PICK: OVER 9.5 (-110)