Wednesday, May 31, 2023
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MLB Preview: Seattle Mariners (21-21) at Boston Red Sox (23-20)


TONIGHT’S TILT…the Mariners continue an 11-day, 9-game road trip (3-2) with the last of 3 games against the Boston Red Sox (1-1)…following an off-day, Seattle travels to play the Atlanta Braves (3 G, May 19-21) before heading home…the Mariners opened the road trip with a 3-game series win in Detroit (2-1)…tonight’s game will be televised live on ROOT SPORTS with Aaron Goldsmith and Mariners Hall of Famer Dan Wilson on the call and broadcast live on Seattle Sports (710 AM) and with Rick Rizzs and Dave Sims.

ODDS AND ENDS…the Mariners dropped the middle game of the series against the Boston Red Sox by a score of 9-4…despite the loss, the Mariners are 10-5 over their last 15 games dating back to April 30, tied for the best record in the American League during that span (also: Texas)…Seattle is 10-12 at T-Mobile Park and 11-9 on the road this season…the Mariners are 7-2 over their last 9 road games (4/30-c).

  • New Faces, Same Results – The Mariners pitching staff has been led by new faces this season, with players who had previously never pitched for Seattle combining to go 4-5 with a 1.44 ERA (15 ER, 93.2 IP), 84 strikeouts, 20 walks, a 0.886 WHIP and 2.8 fWAR.
  • Marco Gets the Start – Marco Gonzales will take the ball for the Mariners and look to secure a series win…Marco is 3-0 with a 4.42 ERA (18 ER, 36.2 IP) and has turned in consecutive quality starts (May 6 and May 12).
  • Run Differential – The Mariners hold a +28 run differential this season, ranking 8th-best in the Majors… based on their run differential, Seattle holds a Pythagorean Expected Win-Loss record of 24-18.
  • On-Base Geno – Eugenio Suárez has been getting on-base at a .379 clip dating back to May 3, walking more (12) than he is striking out (11) during that span.
  • Rubber Duck – The Mariners are 1-3 in rubber games this season.
  • Programming Note – Following tonight’s game on ROOT SPORTS, the Mariners next two games will be featured on national broadcasts…Friday’s game between the Mariners and Braves will be aired on Apple TV+, and Saturday’s contest will be on FOX…the Mariners will return Sunday to regular programming on ROOT, featuring former Mariners outfielder Mike Cameron in the booth.

TY’s HITTING STREAK MARCHES ON…Ty France went 1-for-5 with 1 double in last night’s game, extending his hitting streak to a career-high tying 13 games (5/3-c)…he is batting .346 (19×55) with 7 runs, 4 doubles, 1 home run, 5 RBI and 2 walks during the streak, getting on base at a .390 clip and slugging .473 with an .863 OPS since May 3…the Mariners first baseman has 5 multi-hit games in that span… France and Nathaniel Lowe-TEX are the only players with multiple 10+ game hitting streaks this season… France also hit safely in 11 consecutive games from April 2-14…the current 13-game streak by France is tied for 2nd-longest active streak in the Majors, trailing only an active 14-game Streak by Jonah HeimTEX (4/30-c)…with a hit in tonight’s game, France would become the first Mariners hitter with a 14+ game hitting streak since Kyle Seager (14 G, 8/4-20/2019).

CROSSING THEIR T’s AND DOTTING THE ZONE…the Mariners have the best pitching staff in the Major Leagues by fWAR (8.6), ranking ahead of 2nd-place Minnesota (7.0) by a wide margin…Seattle pitchers also rank 4th in the Majors in ERA (3.34), while leading the Majors in Fielding Independent Pitching (3.29), soft-contact percentage (19.1) and fewest barrels (60)…they rank 3rd in WHIP (1.16) and 2nd in SO/BB ratio (3.36) and tied for 1st in Outside Swing Percentage (34.5%)…Mariners starting pitchers are tied for the ML lead in fWAR (5.9) with Minnesota…Mariners relief pitchers rank 2nd in the Majors in fWAR (2.7) narrowly trailing Baltimore (2.9)…during the month of May, the Mariners pitching staff holds a 2.81 ERA, ranking 2nd in the Majors behind only San Diego (2.59).

J.P. THE CATALYST…J.P. Crawford has reached base safely in 13-consecutive games (4/30-c), batting .245 (12×49) with 8 runs, 2 doubles, 8 RBI and 9 walks while getting on base at a .362 clip during the streak…the Mariners are 9-4 during Crawford’s active on base streak…overall this season, the Mariners shortstop is batting .240 (31×129) with 22 runs, 9 doubles, 1 home run, 16 RBI and 26 walks, getting on base at a .368 clip and slugging .333 (.701 OPS) with a 109 wRC+ and a 0.8 fWAR…Crawford ranks 2nd in the Majors among qualified hitters with a .600 (9×15) batting average with runners in scoring position and 2 outs, trailing only Jonah Heim-TEX (.643/9×14).

ROLLING…dating back to April 30, the Mariners are 10-5 (.667), tied for the best record in the American League (also: Texas), and tied for 2nd best in the Majors, trailing only Los Angeles-NL (12-3, .800)… since April 30, Seattle has outscored opponents 78-49, averaging 5.20 runs/game on offense and limiting opponents to 3.27 runs/game…the Mariners have scored 4+ runs in 10 of 15 games during that stretch (4/30-c), including 8 games scoring 5+ runs…overall this season, the Mariners are 16-8 when scoring 4+ runs and 5-13 when scoring 3-runs-or-less.

BIG DUMPER…Cal Raleigh went 1-for-3 with 1 run and 1 walk in last night’s game…overall this season, Cal ranks tied for 3rd among catchers with 7 home runs (also: Shane Langeliers-OAK), trailing only Sean Murphy-ATL (10 HR) and Salvador Perez-KC (9 HR)…dating back to the beginning of the 2022 season, Cal leads all catchers with 34 home runs and ranks 2nd among American League catchers with 5.3 fWAR, trailing only Adley Rutschman-BAL (6.6 fWAR), while ranking 5th overall among all catchers in fWAR since 2022…since 2022, Raleigh’s .266 ISO ranks 9th in the Majors and leads all catchers (min. 200 PA).

TEO IS SHOW…Teoscar Hernández went 2-for-4 with 1 run, 1 triple, and 2 RBI in last night’s game, and has now reached base safely in 12 of his last 13 games (5/3-c), including 11 games with at least 1 hit during that span…since May 3, Teo is batting .333 (17×51) with 7 runs scored, 2 doubles, 1 triple, 1 home run, 6 RBI, 4 walks and 1 stolen base, while reaching base at a .375 clip and slugging .471 with a .846 OPS in 13 games…during the 12-game stretch, he has reached base multiple times in 7 games, including 5 multi-hit games

AS YOU KNOW…Ty France and J.P. Crawford each have active on base streaks of at least 13 games, with France reaching in each of his last 14 (5/2-c) and Crawford reaching safely in 13-consecutive games (4/30-c), but, DID YOU KNOW?…that France and Crawford are 1 of 3 sets of teammates with active on-base streaks of at least 13 games?…they are joined by Texas trio Nathaniel Lowe (20 G), Jonah Heim (16 G) and Marcus Semien (15 G) and New York-AL duo D.J. Lemahieu and Anthony Rizzo, who have both reached in each of their last 14 games.

2023 MLB Breakdown:
Overall 3-0 4.42 7/7 36.2 39 21 18 12 25 4
Home 0-0 4.76 3/3 17.0 16 9 9 6 14 1
Road 3-0 4.12 4/4 19.2 23 12 9 6 11 3
vs. BOS 0-0 0.00 0/0 0.0 0 0 0 0 0 0


  • 31-year-old left-hander is making his 8th start of the season, 1st against the Boston Red Sox…he is also making his 161st career appearance (153rd career start) and his 6th career start against Boston.
  • Acquired by Seattle from St. Louis in exchange for minor league outfielder Tyler O’Neill on July 21, 2017.
  • Native of Fort Collins, CO…attended Gonzaga University for 3 years (2011-13).
  • Originally selected by Colorado in the 29th round of the 2010 MLB Draft out of Rocky Mountain High School (Fort Collins, CO) but did not sign… drafted and signed by the Cardinals with the 19th overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft out of Gonzaga University…became the highest draft pick in the history of the Gonzaga baseball program.
  • Made his MLB debut with Cardinals on June 25, 2014 at Colorado.

LAST TIME OUT…W#3 in last start on 5/12 at DET…allowed 2 runs on 5 hits (1 HR) and 1 walk with 2 strikeouts over 6.0 innings.

SPRING FEVER…has thrown a quality start in each of his 2 starts in the month of May this season…Marco recorded a quality start in 4 of 6 starts in May of 2022, while posting a 3.44 ERA (14 ER, 36.2 IP) during the month…overall, he has been historically good in May, posting a 3.76 ERA (45 ER, 107.2 IP) during the month, his 2nd-lowest ERA in any calendar month during his career, ranking behind only his 3.34 ERA during Sept./Oct.

WINNING WAYS…his 3 wins this season are tied for the 3rd most wins in the first 7 starts to a season in his career…he also achieved this feat in 2014 (w/ STL) and 2018…his career high in wins in the first 7 starts to a season is 5 which he achieved in 2019.

SEASON-HIGH PUNCHIES…matched his career high in strikeouts with 9 on 4/19 against Milwaukee…it marks the 6th time he has achieved this feat, the last coming on 8/12/21 against the Texas Rangers when he pitched the third complete game of his career.

LET’S GET DEEP…The Mariners are 55-27 in starts when Gonzales goes 6.0 or more innings, compared to 24-42 when he tosses 5.2 innings or less over his career…when Gonzales tosses 7.0+ innings the Mariners are 25-9.


STATE OF THE SOX: The Red Sox won last night to snap a season-high-tying 4-game losing streak (also 4/10-13). The Sox are 2-6 in their last 8 games following a season-long 8-game winning streak from 4/29-5/6. The Sox are 1.5 games out of the AL’s 3rd Wild Card spot and rank 5th in the AL East…Their record (23-20, .535) would rank no lower than 3rd in any other division.

Rk. Team W-L Pct. GB

  1. Baltimore 27-15 .643 +3.0
  2. Toronto 24-18 .571 –
  3. New York-AL 25-19 .568 –
  • Houston 23-19 .548 -1.0
  • Boston 23-20 .535 -1.5

SERIES BUSINESS: Tonight’s game will decide the 3-game series vs. SEA…The Red Sox are 4-1 in rubber games. With a win tonight, the Sox would improve to 9-4-1 in series play, including 6-2-0 at home…They have won 4 of their previous 5 home series (3-1 vs. LAA, -1 vs. MIN, 2-1 vs. LE, 4-0 vs. TOR, 1-2 vs. STL). With a loss tonight, the Red Sox would be winless in their last 3 series following a 3-series winning streak (2-1 vs. CLE, 4-0 vs. TOR, 2-1 at PHI, 1-1 at ATL, 0-3 vs. STL, 0-1 vs. SEA).

UPS AND DOWNS: The Red Sox are 18-12 (.600) in their last 30 games, beginning 4/14…They own the 5thbest record in MLB during that span. The Sox scored 3 runs before recording an out in the 1st inning last night, after they were held to 2 runs total over their previous 2 games. The Sox have been held to 3 runs or fewer in 5 of their last 8 games (3.6 runs/game), after scoring 4 or more runs in 20 of their previous 22 games (6.2 runs/game). Since 4/14, the Sox lead MLB in AVG (.282) and OBP (.349) and rank 3rd in runs scored (165) and OPS (.809).

HELP IS ON THE WAY: Garrett Whitlock and Kutter Crawford made rehab appearances last night for Triple-A Worcester. Whitlock started for the WooSox and allowed 1 R in 4.0 IP (5 H, 4 SO, 49 pitches)…Crawford followed in relief, allowing 1 R in 3.0 IP (3 H, 4 SO, 41 pitches).

SLUGGING SOX: The Red Sox lead MLB in doubles (96), rank 2nd in OBP (.349), and rank 3rd in AVG (.268), SLG (.447), OPS (.786), hits (395), and runs scored (236). The Red Sox have scored 5+ runs in 25 games, 2nd most in MLB behind TB (27). The Sox have recorded 10+ hits in 19 games, tied for 4th most in MLB (TB-22, TEX-22, STL-20).

Stat MLB Rank
236 R 3rd
395 H 3rd
96 doubles 1st
153 XBH 3rd
20.3 SO% 5th
Stat MLB Rank
.268 AVG 3rd
.339 OBP 2nd
.447 SLG 3rd
.786 OPS 3rd
111 wRC+ T-5th

SOX STRIKEOUTS: Red Sox’ batters have struck out 336 times, 2nd fewest in the AL and 5th fewest in MLB…They rank 2nd in the AL and 5th in MLB in SO % (20.3%). The Sox struck out 10+ times in each of their 6 games vs. TB and ATL (11.2 SO/game) but have done so just 5 times in their other 37 games (7.3 SO/game).

SOX SWINGS: The Red Sox have swung and missed at just 0.42 pitches per plate appearance, lowest in the AL and 4th-lowest in MLB (WSH-0.38, ARI-0.39, NYM-0.40). The Sox’ 23.5% whiff rate (695 swings and misses) is 2nd-lowest in the AL and 5th-lowest in MLB. The Sox have had 6,470 pitches thrown to them this season, 3rd most in the AL and 7th most in MLB.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The Red Sox scored 9 runs last night, their most since 5/4 vs. TOR (11 runs)…It was their 9th game with 9+ runs scored this season, tied with LAD for 3rd most in MLB behind TB and TEX (11 each). The Sox hit 3 home runs last night, their 7th game this season with 3+ HR (previous: 5/2 vs. TOR-4 HR).

SOX & M’s: The Red Sox have won 9 of their last 11 games against the Mariners, beginning 9/14/21. The Sox are 7-2 vs. SEA since the start of 2022, winning each of their 2 series last season. Since the start of 2022, the Red Sox are 29-10 against AL West opponents (4-2 this season).

HOME COOKING: The Red Sox are 14-11 at Fenway Park, including 12-7 in their last 19 games at the venue. The Red Sox have hit 16 HR in their last 10 home games, despite not hitting a home run in 3 consecutive games from Saturday-Monday. The Sox have recorded 9+ hits in 10 of their last 11 home games and in 18 of their 25 home games.

Stat MLB Rank
14 wins T-4th
5.8 R/game 3rd
10.2 H/game 1st
3.9 XBH/game 2nd
Stat MLB Rank
.290 AVG 1st
.356 OBP 1st
.479 SLG 2nd
.835 OPS 2nd

BACK ON ROAD: Following tonight’s game, the Red Sox will embark on an 11-day road trip to SD (3 games), LAA (3 games), and ARI (3 games).
The upcoming trip is tied for the Sox’ longest of the season by days…It is their 2nd-longest trip of the season by games played (10 games in 11 days from 8/14-24).

RUNNIN’ RED SOX: The Red Sox rank 2nd in MLB in SB% (87.1%, 27-for-31), trailing only CWS (91.7%, 22-for-24). The Sox ranked 22nd in SB% in 2022 (72.2%, 52-for-72).

YOUTH MOVEMENT: The Red Sox have an MLB-leading 6 players age 27 or younger with an OPS above .700 (min. 50 PA; Casas, Devers, Duran, Valdez, Verdugo, Wong). Players 27 or younger have combined to hit 34 of the team’s 54 HR (Devers-11, Casas-6, Verdugo-5, Wong-4, Duran-3, Chang-3, Valdez-2). Position players 27 or younger have posted 4.5 fWAR for the Red Sox, 2nd most of any team (TB-7.0)…Their 34 HR rank 3rd in MLB behind CWS (36) and TB (35).

ANGELS IN THE OUTFIELD: The Red Sox’ outfielders lead MLB in AVG (.306), OBP (.376), SLG (.516), OPS (.892), hits (155), doubles (46), XBH (67), runs (95), and RBI (90). In 2022, Sox outfielders batted .243 with a .301 OBP, .375 SLG, and .676 OPS.

START ME UP: Red Sox’ starting pitchers have tossed at least 5.0 innings in 19 of their last 20 games. Sox’ starters have allowed no more than 4 runs and recorded at least 5 strikeouts in each of the last 6 games. Sox’ starters posted a 4.46 ERA in the last 6 games (17 ER/34.1 IP), after entering that span with a 5.71 ERA.

DON’T START WITH US: Starting pitchers have completed at least 6.0 innings in just 8 starts against the Red Sox this season, fewest of any team in MLB…They have done so in 4 of the Sox’ last 8 games, compared to 4 of their first 35. Starters have lasted fewer than 4.0 innings in 12 starts vs. BOS this season, most in MLB…No other team has more than 8 such starts against them. Starting pitchers are 14-14 with a 5.77 ERA vs. BOS. Right-handed starting pitchers have a 5.70 ERA vs. BOS; left-handed starters have a 5.97 ERA.

Held ATL scoreless through the first 5.0 IP before allowing 2 runs in the 6th inning last Wednesday (6.0 IP, 6 H, BB, 5 SO)….Earned his 2nd win of the season. Has allowed 5 ER over 16.0 IP in his last 3 starts (2.81 ERA), after giving up 8 ER over 7.1 IP in his first 2 (9.82 ERA).
Has issued 2 BB or fewer in each of his last 9 starts since 9/14/22 (43 SO, 14 BB), after walking 3+ batters in 5 of his first 9 outings (36 SO, 20 BB). In his MLB career, opponents are 14-for-80 (.175) with 13 singles and 1 double against his changeup (5-for-23 with 10 SO in 2023). Only 5 of the 73 batted balls against him in 2023 have been barrelled (6.8%).

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