Kevin Millwood, conferring with catcher Jesus Montero, will be tasked with ending Seattle's three-game losing streak Sunday. / Drew Sellers, Sportspress Northwest
GAME: White Sox (8-6, 3rd, AL Central, – 1.0 GB) at Mariners (7-9, 3rd AL West, – 6.0 GB). GAME #: 17. SERIES: 3rd of 3 games. MEETING (2012): 3rd (White Sox lead 2-0). WHEN: Sunday, 1:05 p.m., Safeco Field. PROBABLE PITCHERS: LHP John Danks (Chicago, 1-2, 4.82) vs. RHP Kevin Millwood (Seattle, 0-0, 6.30). STREAKS: Mariners L 3; White Sox W 2. TV: ROOT Sports, MLB TV. RADIO: KIRO 710 (Seattle), Mariners Radio Network.
The good news, as far as the Mariners are concerned, is that no team in major league history has ever been “perfecto-ed” two days in a row. Almost as reassuring, no team has been no-hit on back-to-back days since the St. Louis Browns tossed no-nos against the White Sox May 5-6, 1917.
The bad news: the Mariners own a .205 batting average against Chicago’s starter, John Danks, hardly a stat that suggests the Mariners can stanch a season-long three-game losing streak, and will enter with a .190 batting average at Safeco Field.
Maybe May 5-6, 1917 wasn’t so far-fetched after all.
Kevin Millwood hardly inspires confidence, either, based on his last outing, when he coughed up a seven-run lead to the Cleveland Indians.
Once Sunday’s series-ender is in the books, the Mariners will decamp on a road trip that will take them through Detroit, Toronto and Tampa Bay. A closer look at Sunday’s probables:
MARINERS: RHP Kevin Millwood (0-0, 6.30 ERA, 1.70 WHIP)
The 37-year-old Millwood, in his 16th major league season and first with the Mariners, is making his third start of the season and his first against the White Sox.
A native of Gastonia, NC., the 6-4, 230-pound Millwood was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 11th round of the 1993 amateur draft.
Millwood made his major league debut July 14, 1997, collecting a win in relief for the Braves against the Philadelphia Phillies. During his career, Millwood pitched for the Braves (1997-02), Philadelphia (2003-04), Cleveland (2005), Texas (2006-09), Baltimore (2010) and Colorado (2011) before joining the Mariners.
Millwood twice won 18 games in a season, going 18-7 for the 1999 Braves and 18-8 for the 2002 Braves. Millwood led the National League in starts with 35 in 2000, led the NL in shutouts in 2003 with three, led the American League in ERA in 2005 at 2.86, and the AL in losses in 2010 with 16.
Millwood represented Atlanta in the 1999 All-Star Game.
During his American League career, Millwood made 24 starts against the Mariners, posting an 8-13 record with a 4.91 ERA.
Millwood signed with the Mariners Jan. 24 as a free agent, and earned the fifth spot in the rotation with a strong performance during spring training.
Millwood has a career record of 163-140, 4.11 ERA into Sunday’s game.
- LAST START: April 17 vs. Cleveland, received a no-decision despite allowing seven runs on nine hits in just 4 innings; walked one, fanned one and gave up a home run, a three-run bomb to Carlos Santana that sparked the Indians to a 9-8 win after Seattle led 8-1.
- LAST VS. WHITE SOX: Aug. 7, 2010, pitching for Baltimore, allowed one run on four hits over 6innings and received a no-decision in a 4-2 loss at Camden Yards; allowed one home run, a solo shot to Carlos Quentin; struck out two and walked a pair.
- CAREER VS. WHITE SOX: 11 starts and a 1-5 record with a 3.14 ERA covering 66 IP; has 46 strikeouts vs. 21 walks, and has yielded five home runs.
- AT SAFECO FIELD: 14 starts, going 3-8 with a 5.57 ERA in 82.1 IP; batting average against in Safeco is .320, and hes been dinged for 12 home runs.
- LOVES TO FACE: Alexei Ramirez (2-for-9, .222 BA, 1 K), A.J. Pierzynski (5-for-22, .227 BA, 3 K’s).
- HATES TO FACE: Adam Dunn (8-for-19, .421 BA, 6 HRs, 1.368 slg), Paul Konerko (10-for-27, .370 BA, 3 RBIs), Alex Rios (5-for-18, .278 BA, 1 HR).
- CURRENT WHITE SOX VS. MILLWOOD: 30-for-96, .313 BA, 7 HRs, 13 RBIs, 16 K’s.
Millwood / 2012
- April 11 (ND, 0-0): Allowed one earned run on four hits over 6 innings; a no-decision in a 4-3 Seattle victory over Texas; struck out seven, walked three; threw 103 pitches, 61 for strikes.
- April 17 (ND, 0-0): Couldn’t hold an 8-1 lead, but took a no-decision after allowing seven runs on nine hits in four innings in Seattle’s 9-8 loss to Cleveland.
WHITE SOX: LHP John Danks (1-2, 4.82 ERA, 1.34 WHIP)
The 27-year-old Danks, in his sixth major league season, all with the White Sox, will be making his fourth start of the season and his first against the Mariners.
A native of Austin, TX., the 6-1, 215-pound Danks was selected by the Texas Rangers in the first round (ninth pick) of the 2003 amateur draft.
Danks signed with the Rangers July 11, 2003, and pitched in their system until Dec. 23, 2006, when Texas traded him with Jacob Rasner (minors) and Nick Masset to the Chicago White Sox for David Paisano (minors) and Brandon McCarthy.
Danks made his major league debut April 8, 2007, taking the loss in Chicagos 3-1 loss to Johan Santana and Minnesota Twins (allowed three earned runs in 6 innings).
Danks has been a key operative in Chicagos rotation ever since, making 153 starts. He had his best year in 2010, when he went 15-11, 3.72. He also won 13 games in 2009. Last year, Danks went 8-12, his first losing season since his rookie year, when he went 6-13.
Danks has a career record of 55-58, 4.05.
- 2012: Danks opened the season by losing to the Texas Rangers April 6, and picked up his only victory by defeating the Cleveland Indians 10-6 April 11. He has not gone past seven innings in any of his starts.
- LAST START: April 17 vs. Baltimore, allowed three runs on five hits over 7 innings, taking the loss in Chicagos 3-2 defeat to the Orioles; gave up two home runs, dropping season record to 1-2.
- LAST VS. MARINERS: Aug. 27, blanked won 3-0 at Safeco Field, outdueling Michael Pineda; tossed a complete-game three-hitter with 10 strikeouts and one walk; had 13 ground-ball outs and seven fly-ball outs.
- CAREER VS. MARINERS: 11 starts; 6-4 record and 2.72 ERA; struck out 55 Mariners and walked 15; ceded eight home runs.
- AT SAFECO FIELD: Six games, all starts, going 3-2, 1.83 covering 44.1 IP; strikes out 7.1 Ms per 9 innings; allowed three Safeco home runs.
- LOVES TO FACE: Chone Figgins (4-for-25, .160 BA, 8 Ks), Brendan Ryan (1-for-6, .167 BA, 2 Ks), Casper Wells (2-for-12, .167 BA, 7 Ks).
- HATES TO FACE: John Jaso (1-for-2, .500 BA), Michael Saunders (2-for-6, .333 BA), Miguel Olivo (5-for-19, .263 BA).
- CURRENT MARINERS VS. DANKS: 35-for-171, .205 BA, .244 OBP, .304 SLG, .549 OPS.
AL WEST STANDINGS
MARINERS / STATS NOTES
- After getting “perfecto-ed” by Philip Humber Saturday, the Mariners are 3-5 during the current three-team, nine-game home stand that ends Sunday; the Mariners are hitting .190 (47×247) at Safeco after going 0-for-27 against Humber.
- Humber needed just 96 pitches to complete his perfect game. The last perfect-game pitcher with fewer than 100 pitches: David Cone, July 18, 1999, with 88. The most economical perfect game ever: Addie Joss, April 30, 1922, needed just 74 pitches to beat the White Sox.
- Saturday marked the second time the Mariners have been no-hit. Dwight Gooden of the Yankees did it to Seattle in New York May 14, 1996.
- The only other no-hitter against the Mariners came in a combined effort by Angels Mark Langston (seven innings) and Mike Witt (two innings) in Anaheim April 11, 1990.
- With Saturday’s historic loss, the Mariners are 183-214 all-time vs. the White Sox, including 104-94 in Seattle and 33-25 at Safeco Field.
- Humber is one of the least-accomplished pitchers ever to throw a perfect game. Before Saturday, he had never thrown a major league shutout or even a complete game (high of 7.2 IP). In 120 minor league innings, Humber threw just one shutout.
- Since 2008, Chicago’s Paul Konerko is batting .373 (47×126) with 20 runs scored, 10 doubles, 10 home runs and 24 RBI in 34 games vs. the Mariners.
- Saturday’s hard-luck loser, Blake Beavan, has pitched at least 5.0 innings in each of his 18 MLB starts, and gave up three runs in six innings against Chicago.
- After 16 games, the Mariners rank 13th in the AL in batting average (.223), 14th in on-base percentage (.272), 13th in slugging (.348) and 13th in OPS (.620).
- Felix follow-up: Felix Hernandez received a no-decision Thursday when he struck out 12 in 8 shutout innings. That marked Felix’s 16th no-decision while throwing 7 or more innings and allowing one or fewer runs.
- Ichiro has 756 multi-hit games (2-for-4 Friday), which ranks fourth among active players, and No. 1 since his debut in 2001. Ichiro’s 47 games with four or more hits leads all active players.
- With 96 career home runs, Ichiro needs four to become the 12th Mariner with 100. Breakdown: 94 as a leadoff hitter, one batting second, one batting third.
- Through 16 games, the Mariners are batting 28-for-115 (.243) with runners in scoring position.
- Through 16 games, the Mariners have been out-homered 19-11.
- Through 16 games, the Mariners have left 82 men on base, their opponents 94. The Mariners stranded two Friday.
- Through 16 games, the Mariners have scored 56 runs, their opponents 65.
- Seattle’s bullpen has given up 10 homers in 16 games after leading the AL with just 32 allowed last season.
- The Mariners have four bases-loaded walks (Kawasaki, Ryan, Montero, Smoak), which leads the American League and is tied (w/SD) for the MLB lead. The Mariners had 13 bases loaded walks last season, T2nd in the AL.
- The Mariners are 6-1 when out-hitting the opponent. Friday’s game was the first this season that the Mariners had more hits (9) than their opponent and lost (Chicago had eight hits).
- Reliever Tom Wilhelmsen, who has appeared in eight of Seattle’s first 16 games, leads all American League relievers with 12 strikeouts.
- Until he made his debut against the White Sox Friday, RHP Hisashi Iwakuma had been the official the last man sitting — the player that made an Opening Day roster and had yet to appear in a game (while not being optioned out or going on the DL). The race came down to Iwakuma, who has not pitched in the first 14 games, and White Sox starter Philip Humber, but Humber started Monday vs. Baltimore, and then threw the perfect game Saturday.
- Milestones: Kyle Seager’s single in the fourth inning Tuesday marked the 50,000th hit in Mariners’ history, and Brendan Ryan’s walk in the same frame scored Justin Smoak with the 25,000th run in franchise history.
- Two Mariners, Ichiro (March 28 in Tokyo vs. Oakland) and Justin Smoak (April 17 vs. Cleveland) have four-hit games in 2012.
- Jesus Montero owns Seattle’s longest hitting streak of 2012: eight games, from March 29-April 14.
- The Mariners have been shut out three times in 2012 (April 10 at Texas, April 13 vs Oakland, April 21 vs. Chicago).
- Three Mariners, Munenori Kawasaki, Lucas Luetge and Erasmo Ramirez, have made their MLB debuts this season.
- The Mariners have batted around three times: April 7 at Oakland (4th inning), April 9 at Texas (1st), and April 17 vs. Cleveland (4th). Justin Smoak had two hits in the fourth vs. Cleveland, a pair of singles.
- Mariners on the DL: Mike Carp (15-day), sprained right shoulder; Franklin Gutierrez (15-day), torn right pectoral; George Sherrill (15-day), strained flexor bundle. Gutierrez is still not ready to go out on a minor league rehab assignment, but Carp has begun rehab assignment with the Tacoma Rainiers.
- C Adam Moore underwent surgery Thursday to repair a right medial meniscus tear. Moore had to be removed from a Tacoma Rainiers game Monday after suffering the injury in the second inning. The Mariners have not announced how long Moore will be sidelined.
- The Mariners have three more bobblehead nights after Ichiro’s last Friday: May 25 (Dustin Ackley), June 15 (Felix Hernandez), July 28 (Dan Wilson and Randy Johnson). BTW: Ichiro is a career .311 hitter (15×45) on his 12 bobblehead nights.
- Series Records: Won 2, split 0, lost 3.
- Longest Win Streak: 2 (April 6-7, April 14-15).
- Longest Losing Streak: 3 (April 19-21).
MARINERS WON-LOSS BREAKDOWN
MARINERS BATTING PROFILE
MARINERS PITCHING PROFILE
||Millwood (1-1, 6.30) vs. Danks (1-2, 4.82)
||Vargas (2-1, 2.84) vs. Scherzer (1-1, 7.98)
||Fernandez (1-1, 2.76) vs. Wilk (0-2, 4.00)
||Noesi (1-2, 9.49) vs. Porcello (1-0, 1.84)
MARINERS 2012 SCHEDULE/RESULTS
||Win / Loss
||W: Wilhelmsen (1-0); L: Carignan (0-1)
||W: Colon (1-0); L: Kelley (0-1)
||Win / Loss
||W: Vargas (1-0); L: McCarthy (0-1)
||W: Hernandez (1-0); L: Colon (1-1)
||W: Darvish (1-0); L: Noesi (0-1)
||W: Feliz (1-0); L: Beavan (0-1)
||W: Luetge (1-0); L: Nathan (0-2)
||W: Holland (1-0); L: Vargas (1-1
||W: Colon (2-1); L: Hernandez (1-1)
||W: Noesi (1-1); L: Milone (1-1)
||W: Beavan (1-1); L: Godfrey (0-2)
||W: Perez (0-1); L: Furbush (0-1)
||W: Vargas (2-1); L: Lowe (2-1)
||W: Tomlin (1-1); L: League (0-1)
||W: Sale (2-1); L: Noesi (1-2)
||W: Humber (1-0); Beavan (1-2)