Mike Minor (0-4, 6.94 ERA) vs. Justin Dunn (1-1, 7.80 ERA)
The Texas Rangers and Seattle Mariners will play the series finale of a three-game series on Sunday at T-Mobile Park. The Mariners are looking for a rare sweep this afternoon following a win on Friday and Saturday. They looked good in wins of 7-4 and 10-1. Jordan Lyles took it on the chin yesterday for the Rangers.
He was toyed with for 11 hits and 8 earned runs in 4 innings of work. The Mariners scored 3 runs in the bottom 1st and then 5 more in the 3rd. Chris Woodward let Lyles pitch one more inning before pulling the plug on him. He could have gone to the bullpen earlier, but the idea was to save some arms for today.
The wins don’t mean much for the Mariners. They are a 10-19 team that won’t be playing postseason baseball. Leading into their series against the Rangers, the Mariners lost seven of their previous eight games. Impressively enough, that one win was against the LA Dodgers. And in two of their losses versus the Dodgers, the Mariners were competitive and made them have to fight for it.
That might be more impressive than their two wins over the Rangers. That said, it’s hard to ignore their 10-1 win from Saturday. We’ll see what the Mariners do for an encore on Sunday against the visiting Rangers. They haven’t looked too excited to be in Seattle, but with a sweep staring them in the face, perhaps that’ll be enough to be better prepared and focused on Sunday.
Mike Minor wasn’t too thrilled with trade rumors at the trade deadline in 2019. He let it be known publicly that he wants to remain a Ranger and stay in Texas. Minor is interested in an extension, but has his value tanked now? His three-year contract runs out following this season.
The Rangers won’t get what they would have last season for him, if they want to go the trade route, but Minor has been struggling and there may not be much of a market for him. Minor is expected to start the series finale in Seattle for the Rangers. 24-year-old Justin Dunn is expected to start opposite Minor. Head below for our free Texas Rangers vs. Seattle Mariners pick for August 23, 2020.
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Texas Rangers vs. Seattle Mariners Prediction:
Mike Minor needs to get his stuff together or this shortened season is going to feel awfully long for him. Minor goes into Sunday with an ERA of 6.94 and 1.50 WHIP after hitting a few speed bumps. This is not the 2019 version of Minor that we saw on the hill. Minor was close to recording a career-high ERA, and while he didn’t accomplish that, he was good with an ERA of 3.59 and 1.24 WHIP. Minor has a 3.97 ERA and 1.23 WHIP through 241 innings in his career. In other words, Minor is pitching well below expectations.
That said, in his best start this season, he was lights out against the Mariners on August 11. Minor gave up just 1 hit and no runs through 4 innings of work. He did walk three batters, though, so his command was a bit of a problem. Minor followed up on August 18 against the San Diego Padres with a poor showing, as the Padres scored 6 runs on Minor in 3.2 innings. Minor also conceded 9 hits for a very rough performance.
The Padres have been torching every pitcher in their way, so Minor can’t feel too bad about that outing. Minor has been filthy against the Mariners in the past and not just their recent meeting. The Mariners are hitting .134 versus Minor in 60 at-bats. Austin Nola is the only Mariner to have hit a home run off Minor in his career. I have more faith in the vet bouncing back than I do Justin Dunn of the Mariners.
Dunn is looking to make an impact and earn a spot in the starting rotation for next season. The audition hasn’t been going well for the 24-year-old. Dunn has a 7.80 ERA and 1.80 WHIP through 15 innings of work. He’s given up 16 hits and 13 earned runs in 15 innings. The Rangers got to Dunn for 7 hits, 3 walks, and 2 earned runs in their first meeting. He was able to work out of some jams or it could have been much worse. I’m on the Rangers to salvage a win out of this series and avoid getting swept on Sunday in Seattle.