The Seattle Mariners got some frustration out yesterday, blasting the Twins by a score of 11-4. Minnesota handled the Mariners on Friday, 4-2, but the Mariners made up for it the following day. The American League Central is there for the taking more than ever. The Twins have a legitimate opportunity to snag it while others in the division are down. The Tigers, Royals, and White Sox will likely be a non-threat.
That leaves the Indians who will probably be the other team near the top of the AL Central in August. Let’s call it what it is, though, the AL Central on average is kind of a dumpster fire. On paper, no one is going to surpass the Astros. A lot can change between now and then, though. The Tribe didn’t really add anything this offseason, so there isn’t any reason to believe they improve from a year ago. If anything, they subtracted instead of added. The Edwin Encarnacion contract will likely prevent them from signing any big name bats in the near future. He’s not going to get any better with time.
The Mariners added Robinson Cano to their roster a few years ago to get them to the postseason. It hasn’t happened yet, but we can’t blame it on him last season. The offense finally came around and then their pitchers had to drop like flies. First it was Iwakuma, and then Felix Hernandez went down who was already having a down season. Finally, James Paxton was the final kill shot for the Mariners postseason chase. Soon as everything was coming together for them that had to happen. The Twins on the other hand hope to build on their wild card appearance against the Yankees. It didn’t go so well, but the goal is for it to be a building block. Head below for our free Mariners vs. Twins pick.
Seattle Mariners vs. Minnesota Twins Pick
Marco Gonzales (1-0, 4.26 ERA) vs. Lance Lynn (0-1, 11.25 ERA)
Lance Lynn feels a lot older than 30 years old to me. It feels like he’s been around forever with the Cardinals. In actuality, Lynn was with the Cards for seven strong years. He did miss all of 2016, but came back to play well in 2017 with a 3.43 ERA. Lynn has been one of the most consistent pitchers throughout his career, never allowing his ERA to jump above 4.00. His best year came in 2014, where he posted an ERA of 2.74. Note that this is the first year he’s pitching with a different team in his career other than the Cards. His debut in Minnesota got off to a rough start, as he allowed 5 runs in just 4 innings of work, which equates to a 11.25 ERA. The Twins are just hoping it’s an anomaly and not a sign of things to come. If there is anything Lynn has done well at in his career, it’s being consistent with his numbers.
Marco Gonzales underwent Tommy John surgery around this time last year, so he was never pitching at 100 percent in the limited starts he got. Gonzales is a former teammate of Lynn who never established much of a career in St. Louis. He made one start in 2017 with the Cardinals which went for a 13.50 ERA. In 2015 he did the same thing, one start for an ERA of 13.50. In seven starts as a Mariner, Gonzales notched a 5.40 ERA.
He was fine in his debut of 2018, allowing 3 hits and 3 runs in 6.1 innings pitched. Nelson Cruz will miss today, but he just got out of his walking boot and should be back sometime this coming week. Despite scoring 11 runs yesterday, their offense is a lot different without him. I like to think that Lynn is much better than his 11.25 ERA indicates. He was rocked in the 1st inning and did settle down a bit thereafter. Additionally, Lynn has a disastrous history against the Pirates at PNC Park. Even when he was hot, Lynn could never figure it out in Pittsburgh. He should be able to get a much better outing on Sunday against the Mariners.