Morning Mariners 5/7: A Breather, Pirates, Minors Update

  1. A Break in the Schedule
  2. Pittsburgh Pirates Preview
  3. Minor League Notebook


A Break in the Schedule

The Seattle Mariners enjoyed a day off yesterday. The schedule had been brutal on them in the first month of the season, but it’s finally beginning to relax on them a bit. Come Thursday — when the club returns home after a short five game road trip — the squad will be idle for the third time during an eight day stretch. The following Monday will be their fourth off-day in a 12-day span. So, as the club is playing better ball, they’re also catching a bit of a breather.

 

Credit: daveynin via Flickr

Credit: daveynin via Flickr

Pittsburgh Pirates Preview
The M’s open a short, two-game set against the 17-14 Pirates in Pittsburgh. The Buccos — losers of two in a row and five of their last 10 — look to get back on track in their home park against a rare opponent in the Mariners. They’re 9-6 at PNC Park while the Mariners are 6-10 away from the confines of Safeco Field.

Offense

These two clubs are pretty similar by some advanced offensive metrics. The Mariners’ wRC+ of 96 is just a tick higher than that of the Pirates, who sit at 95. Using wOBA, the Pirates have the advantage with their .309 to the Mariners’ .306. More of a traditionalist when if comes to your statistics? Check out these team triple slash lines:

Mariners: .241/.308/.387
Pirates: .241/.307/.397

The Mariners are basically facing the Mariners for the next two days when it comes to offense. As for the pitching? The M’s may look to have a more clear advantage there.

Rotation

Mariners: 4.28 ERA, 4.13 FIP, 3.94 xFIP 3.36 K/BB, 1.20 WHIP
Pirates: 4.54 ERA, 4.50 FIP, 4.21 xFIP, 1.97 K/BB, 1.39 WHIP

So, for all their troubles after Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma, the Mariners rotation has been a couple ticks better than the Pirates’ — and Seattle’s looks to improve whereas Pittsburgh’s future output is pretty likely to be what it’s looked like thus far.

Bullpen

Mariners: 3.91 ERA, 4.03 FIP, 3.79 xFIP, 2.59 K/BB, 1.28 WHIP
Pirates: 2.99 ERA, 3.98 FIP, 3.71 xFIP, 2.21 K/BB, 1.18 WHIP

Another aspect of these clubs that is pretty similar. With how unpredictable relievers are and how difficult their future value is to predict based on small samples, it’s tough to give either squad the advantage here. Pittsburgh appears to be the superior team defensively, however, so that certainly helps when a bullpen is managed based on matchup advantages.

Pitching Probables

Game One
RHP Aaron Harang
RHP Jeanmar Gomez

Game Two
RHP Felix Hernandez
RHP A.J. Burnett


Minor League Notebook

Tacoma and Clinton were the only affiliates playing a games today. Along with the Mariners, Jackson and High Desert had the day off.

Class Triple-A Tacoma
The Rainiers (21-11) ended their homestand with a 7-4 victory over Reno (10-22)… SS Nick Franklin is back to his hitting ways after a 2-3 day at the dish with a pair of doubles and a walk… OF Eric Thames chipped in a double while OFs Corey Patterson and Carlos Peguero checked in with homers to round out Tacoma’s extra base knocks… OF Stefen Romero‘s RBI single in the sixth inning was the only non-XBH… C Mike Zunino was 0-3 and his batting average has plummeted to .195… RHP Andrew Carraway picked up another win in his 86-pitch, seven-inning effort that saw him strikeout a pair and walk one. Two of the three runs he gave up came off a Matt Davidson homer…

Class A Clinton
The Lumberkings (13-15) fell to Bowling Green (20-10) by a final of 4-2… C Tyler Marlette racked up four hits including two doubles… 3B Jordy Lara went 2-4 with a homer and a couple runs batted in… RHP Victor Sanchez faced 21 batters, giving up eight hits and two earned runs while striking out three and walking none…

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Written by Alex Carson

Alex Carson

Founder, Seattle Sports Daily
Alex began writing about the Mariners at SoDo MoJo. He then joined the staff of Prospect Insider where he is still an author and editor. He founded SSD in 2013. Fun fact: Alex created the Rally Cap page on Wikipedia. Not fun fact: He’s had to wear them often supporting the M’s.

Twitter: Follow Alex || E-Mail: carson@seattlesportsdaily.com