The Mariners are having a terrible September, and have only won one series this month. The good news is that the record-setting month of August allowed the team to pick up some wins. The playoffs are still within reach, and it all starts with a crucial three-game set with the Oakland Athletics. No, suddenly the A’s are a good team, but they went to Houston and won two of three games just last week.
Right now, the Mariners need to do better. The pitching and offense are suboptimal right now. It’s time to change the story and grab more wins, especially since the final stretch includes three games with the Astros and seven with the Rangers. The torture of an important September baseball game is in full effect. From a Mariners standpoint, here’s who you should root for this week.
The Red Sox fired their general manager, Chaim Bloom, and lost a winnable series in Toronto. The latter effectively buried them in the wildcard chase (8.5GB). But here we are, cheering on the Beantown-based team to handle business. The Rangers have their three most experienced starters, Jordan Montgomery, Nate Eovaldi and John Gray, set to take over. However, there is reason for optimism.
In July, the Red Sox won two of three against the then-Juggernaut Rangers. Additionally, they offer a unique challenge in their heavy and successful line-up – with Justin Turner and Adam Duvall mashing Southern mares, for example. Yoshida Masataka, Connor Wong, and Alex Verdugo perform much better against right-handers.
Alex Cora must have his team to do the job, and Mariner fans should actively root for the Red Sox.
The Orioles have already clinched their spot in the playoffs, and now it’s all about seeding. With the Tampa Bay Rays hot on their heels, head coach Brandon Hyde wants to be a few steps closer to having home-field advantage throughout the playoffs and a first-round bye.
As for the Astros, they’ve been scuffling lately, losing two or three to the pesky Kansas City Royals. Their lack of proven postseason experience, with the exception of future Hall of Famer Justin Verlander and Framber Valdez, looms large for coach Dusty Baker’s team.
Offensively, the Orioles have the upper hand, with Houston having the pitching advantage. Either way, there’s no world where I can feel good about pushing for an Astro win. Garbage baskets, bean balls and playground fights are all points of contention. MAriner fans should support the team from Charm City, not Space City.
The Blue Jays are coming off an exciting but grueling series against a free-falling Red Sox team. This series is prime time for letdowns. Yankee manager Aaron Boone is playing with several young position players down the stretch, because he’s probably the only one in New York who knows the Yankees are out of the playoff hunt (7GB). Prospects Everson Pereira, Austin Wells and Oswaldo Cabrera all get plenty of runs, and that youth is a reason for optimism in this series.
Toronto is rolling out Yusei Kikuchi, Kevin Gausman, and Jose Berrios, making for a massive task for the Yankees. Despite the clear offensive advantage in this series starting with pitching, the Yankees lead the season series 4-3. This week will be a high-intensity series in the Bronx between two bitter rivals.
Here’s what September baseball has in store for some surprises. It’s hard to write this, however Mariner fans should all be at the Yankees this week.
Mariner fans should follow the results in these matches and should shout from the rooftops for Red Sox, Orioles, and Yankees During the next three days. However, don’t forget your hometown No. 9 because there’s a real chance the narrative will be twisted and unsettling tonight.