The Seattle Mariners start a three-city road trip on Tuesday. They will face the Washington Nationals, Boston Red Sox, and Colorado Rockies. The Nationals and Rockies are both first place teams in their divisions, and the Red Sox are a game above .500. For a Mariners team with so many starting pitchers down, this is not something that should bring comfort.
Mariners Face Tough Road Trip After Disappointing Home Stand
The Home Stand
Coming into the seven games they played, the Mariners had reason to be hopeful that they could right the ship. They were facing an Oakland Athletics team that was stuck in the basement of their division. In addition, a Chicago White Sox team that had lost 11 of 15, and is currently in the middle of a rebuild. The White Sox traded away Chris Sale this offseason, and rumors swirled that Jose Quintana was going as well. That didn’t end up happening, and he began the season as Chicago’s number one starter.
The Mariners got off to a decent start, defeating the Athletics with an exciting walk-off single by Guillermo Heredia. They then fell the next night, but bounced back with a 4-0 win to take the series from Oakland.
They then followed with a 5-4 win to open against Chicago. The wheels promptly began to fall off though. They were stifled by Quintana, who up to this point had not been producing to his career norms. They lost that game 2-1 in extra innings. Then they were destroyed in the next two games, watching as Yovani Gallardo gave up a season-high nine earned runs in just 3.2 IP. A start at second base by Mike Freeman led to an error that would portend to bad things to come. This led to an eventual defeat of 16-1.
The Mariners came back the next morning, and did not put up much of a fight. Scoring only one run off a Nelson Cruz home run, but giving up eight in the process. This led from what could have been a good series into a disaster. Going 3-4 against two teams that had worse records was not how fans and team envisioned the week going. Chicago also handed the Mariners their first home series loss for the year.
The Road Trip
This brings us to the next eight days. The Mariners kick off a three-game series on Tuesday in the nation’s capital against a Nationals team that sits comfortably atop the NL East. The Mariners will be throwing out replacement pitchers to try to stifle an offense that boosts Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman, and Anthony Rendon.
Next will be the Red Sox. A three-game series in Boston with an over .500 team. Boston has not really hit their stride this year, but they have shown flashes here and there. They will be coming off a series against a red-hot Texas Rangers team.
The final part of the road trip will be the start of a four-game, home and away series with the Colorado Rockies. They are currently sporting a 29-17 record, which is good for first place in the NL West. This series will be tough; the Colorado Rockies sit in the top-5 of offensive rankings in the NL in many categories. Not the recipe you want with a Mariners team struggling to put good pitchers out there.
One of the lone positives is the return of Robinson Cano on Tuesday who sat out for the last 10 games with a sore quad. All I can say to the Mariners fans out there is to buckle up. This could be a wild, downhill ride for the next week.