Jays Look for Answers Wednesday Against Surging Marniers

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Story and Photos by Christian J. Stewart (ISN)

August 13, 2014, Seattle, WA (ISN) – Having lost 11-1 on Monday (full story) and 6-3 on Tuesday (full story), generating just 2 runs and 5 hits off Seattle Mariners starting pitchers, the Toronto Blue Jays will look to limp out of Seattle on a positive note Wednesday night and hope that their offence can generate a win and take some momentum into a weekend series with the White Sox that begins on Friday.

Danny Valencia and the rest of the Toronto Blue Jays have been struggling to find runs against the tough pitching of the Seattle Mariners (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

That could be a tough task however, especially against a pitching staff that has the lowest ERA in the majors at 2.97 and that is flirting with being the first MLB team since 1989 to finish the season with a sub-3.00 ERA mark. It also does not get any easier with Mariner’s starter Hisashi Iwakuma on the mound. Iwakuma is already a 10-game winner this season and is 5-2 with a 2.04 ERA in his last eight starts.

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Mariner reliever Charlie Furbush and the rest of the Seattle Mariners pitching staff have a league leading 2.97 team ERA (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

The Jays will hope to reverse the fortunes of two teams that seem to be headed in opposite directions. The Mariners have won 7 of their last 8 games and are 11-5 over their last 16, having outscored their opponents 74-38. The Blue Jays on the other hand, are 3-8 over their last 11 and have lost their last 5 consecutive road games, their second longest road losing streak this season.

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Seattle third baseman Kyle Seager is having a superb year with 18 HRs and 73 RBIs. He will look to add to those totals against the Jays R.A. Dickey on Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

R.A. Dickey (9-11, 3.99 ERA) gets the start for the Jays tonight and the Jays better hope that his knuckle-ball has enough movement on it to baffle the Mariner’s power-hitters. If it doesn’t, you can bet the likes of Kyle Seager (18 home runs, 73 RBIs), Robinson Cano (10 HR, 66RBI), Mike Zunino (18 HR, 45 RBI) and Logan Morrison (6 HR, 23RBIs) will be waiting patiently to knock it all over the park.

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The Jays R.A. Dickey was all smiles for the fans on Monday and will hope that he can keep the smiles on the Jays fan’s faces with a win Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

As usual, the Jays will look to speedster and lead-off hitter Jose Reyes to get things going, and sluggers Jose Bautista and Melky Cabrera to gererate the runs. On Tuesday Reyes had a hit and a walk and scored 2 of the Jays 3 runs, while Bautista and Cabrera combined for 3 of the Jays 6 hits.

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Toronto’s Jose Reyes hopes to get the Jays pointed in the right direction on Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

Both Bautista and Cabrera have streaks going that they would like to see continue on Wednesday. Bautista currently has a 13-game hitting streak at Safeco Field dating back to May 19, 2010, during which he is batting .381 (16×42) with 13 runs scored, 2 doubles, 4 home runs, and 9 RBIs. He has also hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games, batting .304 (14×46) in that span with 4 runs scored, 3 doubles, 3 home runs, and 11 RBIs.

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With this RBI-double on Tuesday, Toronto’s Jose Bautista pushed his hitting streak at Safeco Field to 13 games and has now hit safely in 11 of his last 12, both streaks he would like to see continue on Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)

Cabrera, since the All-Star break, has hit safely in 20 of 25 games with 12 multi-hit contests, batting .388 (38×98) with 17 runs scored, 10 doubles, 3 home runs, and 18 RBIs.

The Jays and Mariners are locked in a tight race for the final AL wild card spot with the Mariners currently tied with Detroit for that spot, while the Jays now sit 2 games back.

Game time Wednesday is 7:10 pm at Safeco Field in Seattle.

Other Notes:

  • Toronto has lost 5 straight and 12 of their last 16 contests vs. the AL West since July 3. Overall the Blue Jays are 12-17 vs. the AL West, including 4-12 on the road.
  • Tuesday’s win marked Seattle Manager Lloyd McClendon’s 400th career win (64 wins with Seattle and 336 wins with the Pirates)
  • Seattle extended it’s club record with its 11th straight game allowing three runs or less (previous: 9, June 1-11, 2009). During the 11-game run they are 8-3 with a 1.93 ERA (21 ER, 98.0 IP) with 86 strikeouts.

Watch for Christian J. Stewart’s game summary and photos late Wednesday night.

 

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