The Seattle Mariners host the Los Angeles Angels today in game three of a three-game series, looking for the sweep. The Mariners have used seven home runs in the first two games to take the two games to none series lead and will look to finish off the sweep tonight in some day baseball from Safeco Field. Seattle is the hottest team in all of baseball right now as they have won nineteen of their last twenty-five games. The Angels had been hot, winners of six out of their last seven, before running into the buzz saw that is the Seattle Mariners over the last several weeks.
Starting today for the Angels is Garrett Richards (4-4 3.26 ERA), and for the Mariners, it is Marco Gonzalez (7-3 3.28 ERA). This game is currently an even pick ‘em as both teams are -110. The game total over-under is set at seven and a half runs. First pitch is scheduled for 1:10 PM PST from Safeco Field in Seattle.
Marco Gonzalez is likely the best pitcher you have never heard of this season. After a slow start, Gonzalez has been nearly unhittable over his last several starts. In his last five starts, Gonzalez has pitched thirty-three innings and has allowed just three earned runs. Gonzalez is 4-0 over that stretch and is finally looking fully recovered from Tommy John surgery that derailed his once promising career. Still, at just twenty-six years old, the future is bright for this young man as he seemingly gets better every trip to the mound. The Mariners are 9-4 in games where Marco starts this season.
The Angels will answer with Garrett Richards. Richards has had a similar season as Gonzalez this year as he started out slow but has been great over the last several weeks. Richards ERA is in the low two-run range since the beginning of May. But unlike Gonzalez, the Angels haven’t been able to capitalize on his good pitching as Richards is 1-3 during that stretch and they have lost four out of his last five starts. In his lone start against Seattle this season, Richards was really good as he pitched six and a third shutout innings and allowed just four hits.
This Seattle team is finally starting to hit for the power than many expected them to have coming into the season. Nelson Cruz is finally healthy, and he busted out his boomstick four times in the last four games. Not to be outdone, Ryon Healy has hit three homers in his last two games, including blasting two in last night’s game. And finally, Mitch Haniger smashed two long balls last night as well. This Mariners team has built this recent win streak on the back of great pitching and timely clutch hitting. But in this series, they have blasted the Angels with their powerful bats.
The Angels have some powerful bats of their own as Mike Trout is really heating up in June. In his eleven games so far in June, Trout is hitting .349 with five homers and eight RBIs. The production has been sorely needed as the Angels are missing Shohei Ohtani’s mighty bat in the lineup. The young Japanese superstar has a sore elbow, and there are whispers of Tommy John surgery floating around LA. The Angels are hoping that at some point Ohtani can still swing the bat as the DH, but as of now, it looks like he is fully shut down until further notice. Losing Ohtani might spell the end for this Angels team unless they are able to make a big splash in the trade market.
This should be another tightly contested game. These teams know each other very well, and Seattle has enjoyed kicking the Angels while they are down. Both Marco Gonzalez and Garrett Richards should be decent in this game. The game should be close and lower scoring. But I just can’t bet against this Mariners team right now.
They are just finding new ways to win games every night. Whether it has been great starting pitching, stellar bullpen work, or timely hitting and power, the Mariners have come up with whatever they needed to win ball games day in and day out. Seattle has the best record in one run games in the majors and that is what this one feels like today.
Until this Mariners team cools down, I am going to continue to back them. I feel a bit like a broken record, as I have bet on the Mariners a lot over this recent stretch of wins, but they keep winning, and they are consistently priced very reasonably. If Marco Gonzalez keeps up this recent hot streak of his, he could very well be a guy we see getting priced in the -170 or more range like his fellow lefty starter, James Paxton. I’ll bank on the fact that Marco is still relatively unknown and that is what is keeping this price so low and back the Mariners yet again. Give me the Seattle Mariners at even money today as they look for the sweep!