The Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angels will try to create some momentum as they begin a four-game series on Friday night. Both teams are on the outside of the playoff picture and desperate to get things turned around for the final month of the season.
The Mariners aren’t as bad as most predicted at the start of the season. Seattle has won six of its last nine games, including a sweep of the Rangers last weekend. While they are still seven games under .500, they have a little positive momentum and are only four games out of the American League’s final playoff spot, giving them a glimmer of hope.
Meanwhile, the Angels might be the biggest disappointment in baseball this year. They are tied with the Red Sox for the fewest wins in the American League, putting them last in the AL West. The Halos have won just two of their last nine games. Because their game in Houston on Wednesday was postponed because of Hurricane Laura, the Angels haven’t played since Tuesday.
The Former Ace
Lefty Andrew Heaney is scheduled to start for the Angels on Friday. He was expected to lead the Los Angeles rotation coming into the season, but things have not played out like that. Through six starts, Heaney is 1-2 with a 5.52 ERA.
He’s been one of the biggest disappointment in a dreadful L.A. rotation. Heaney started the season well but has been a disaster in his last three starts. He’s allowed at least four runs in each of those starts while failing to complete five innings in two of the three starts.
On the bright side, Heaney has faced the Mariners two this season and pitched well both times. Over those two starts, he has allowed just three runs on eight hits across 10.2 innings. The southpaw has done a great job of containing Seattle’s young and promising hitters, most notably Kyle Lewis.
However, Heaney has had issues in the past with veteran slugger Kyle Seager who is 8 for 24 with two doubles against the lefty. Catcher Austin Nola has also emerged as a threat in the Seattle lineup.
The Lefty from the Bullpen
The Mariners will send lefty Nick Margevicius to the mound on Friday. The 24-year-old began the season in the bullpen but is now a full-time member of the Seattle rotation. Margevicius has proven to be more effective in shorter outings, although he earned a win in his last start despite giving up four runs over 5.1 innings. At the moment, he owns a respectable 4.12 ERA over 19.2 innings this year.
Margeviciuius faced the Angels in relief last month and was victimized by a home run by Brian Goodwin. Of course, the L.A. lineup is a lot more dangerous than that with Mike Trout and Anthony Rendon producing as expected. David Fletcher and Tommy La Stella are also having good seasons.
However, the depth in the L.A. lineup isn’t what the Halos hoped it would be. Justin Upton and rookie Jo Adell have yet to get it going. The same is true for Shohei Ohtani and Albert Pujols, so there are some holes in the Los Angeles lineup.
Let It Roll
The Mariners have all of the momentum in this game. While the Angels are at home, they’ve had two straight off-days. Meanwhile, the Mariners played a doubleheader yesterday, scoring 15 runs over 14 innings. Right now, Heaney doesn’t give the Angels much of an advantage over Margevicius, so bet on the Mariners to beat the Angels on Friday night.