BY SPNW Staff 06:30AM 04/24/2012

#18: Mariners Draw AL Central-Leading Tigers

Losers of five of their last six and fading at the plate, the Mariners Tuesday face Max Scherzer, who owns them.

The Mariners play their next three at Detroit's Comerica Park, where Seattle went 5-2 in 2011. / Wiki Commons

GAME: Mariners (7-10, 3rd AL West, – 6.5 GB) at Tigers (10-6, 1st, AL Central, 0.0 GB). GAME #: 18. SERIES: 1st of 3 games. MEETING (2012): 1st. WHEN: Tuesday, 4:05 p.m., Comerica Park. PROBABLE PITCHERS: LHP Jason Vargas (Seattle, 2-1, 2.84) vs. RHP Max Scherzer (Detroit, 1-1, 7.98). STREAKS: Mariners L 4; Tigers L 1. TV: ROOT Sports, MLB TV. RADIO: KIRO 710 (Seattle), Mariners Radio Network.

Losers of their past three (season high), the Mariners commence a 10-game road trip Tuesday at Comerica Park with the first of three contests against the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers, one of the few clubs Seattle enjoyed success against in 2011 (6-4, including 5-2 at Comerica).

The Mariners, though, will face a pitcher, Max Scherzer, who has a career 4-0, 2.00 ERA record against them. Seattle will counter with Jason Vargas, coming off a victory over Derek Lowe and the Cleveland Indians.

After Detroit, the Mariners play three in Toronto and then conclude the trip with a four-game series at Tampa. The Mariners return to Safeco Field Friday, May 4, to host Minnesota. A closer look at Tuesday’s probables:

MARINERS: LHP Jason Vargas (2-1, 2.84 ERA, 0.99 WHIP)

Jason Vargas

The 29-year-old Vargas, in his seventh major league season and fifth with the Mariners, will be making his fourth start of 2012 and first against the Tigers.

A native of Apple Valley, CA., the 6-0, 215-pound Vargas was selected in the second round of the 2004 amateur draft by the Florida Marlins.

He made his debut with Florida July 14, 2005, pitching one inning of relief in a 13-7 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies.

The Mariners acquired Vargas as part of a three-team swap Dec. 11, 2008, when the New York Mets sent him along with Mike Carp, Ezequiel Carrera, Endy Chavez, Maikel Cleto and Aaron Heilman to the Mariners. The Mariners sent Sean Green, J.J. Putz and Jeremy Reed to the Mets.

The Mariners also sent Luis Valbuena to the Indians. The Mets sent Joe Smith to the  Indians, who sent Franklin Gutierrez to the Mariners.

Vargas, currently the only lefty in Seattle’s starting rotation, has a career record of 29-40, 4.50 ERA, including 23-32, 4.16 ERA with the Mariners.

  • LAST START (April 18): Allowed one earned run on four hits over 7 innings, defeating the Indians, 4-1; struck out seven and walked three in a 105-pitch effort (threw 69 strikes); had nine ground-ball outs and nine fly-ball outs.
  • LAST VS. TIGERS: Aug. 18 took a no-decision in an 8-3 loss at Safeco Field, also opposing Scherzer; allowed two earned runs on six hits over 6 innings in a game Vargas could have won if Josh Lueke hadn’t allowed four earned runs in 0.1 innings after replacing Vargas.
  • CAREER VS. TIGERS: Three career starts, 0-1 record with a 5.87 ERA covering 15.1 IP; faced 72 Detroit batters, fanning 10 and walking six.
  • AT COMERICA PARK: One start (July 3, 2010) lasting 4.1 innings; raked for six earned runs on eight hits and took the loss, accumulating a 12.46 ERA.
  • LOVES TO FACE: Danny Worth (0-for-4, .000 BA), Brandon Inge (1-for-6, .167 BA, 1 K), Austin Jackson (2-for-9, .222 BA), Ryan Rayburn (2-for-9, .222 BA).
  • HATES TO FACE: Brennan Boesch (6-for-9, .667 BA), Delmon Young (4-for-9, .444 BA), Jhonny Peralta (2-for-5, .400 BA).BA).
  • CURRENT TIGERS VS. VARGAS: 23-for-65, .354 BA, 11 K’s.

Vargas / 2012

  • March 29 (ND, 0-0): Pitched well enough to win in Tokyo, but after he departed the game, the bullpen imploded, surrendering three home runs, greasing Seattle’s 4-1 defeat to Oakland.
  • April 6 (W, 1-0): Threw 91 pitches, 58 for strikes, finishing with an in-game ERA of 2.31 in a 7-3 victory over Oakland, Vargas’ first win.
  • April 12 (L, 1-1): Allowed four earned runs on seven hits and lost to Derek Holland and the Rangers 5-3 in Arlington; fanned six and walked one; gave up a two-run bomb to Michael Young, who had four RBIs; threw 96 pitches, 63 strikes.
  • April 18 (W, 2-1): Allowed one earned run on four hits over 7 innings, defeating Indians, 4-1; had nine ground-ball outs and nine fly-ball outs.

TIGERS: RHP Max Scherzer (1-1, 7.98 ERA, 1.64 WHIP)

Max Scherzer

The 27-year-old Scherzer, in his fifth major league season and third with the Tigers, will be making his fourth start of the season and first against the Mariners.

A native of St. Louis, the 6-3, 220-pound Scherzer was selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first round (11th pick) in the 2006 amateur draft.

After pitching in Arizona’s system from 2006-08, Scherzer made his major league debut April 29, 2008, in a 6-4 loss to the Houston Astros. Scherzer worked 4.1 innings but did not factor in the decision.

Scherzer pitched for the Diamondbacks in 2008-09, compiling a 9-15 record and 3.86 ERA in 46 games. He made 30 starts for the 2009 Diamondbacks, posting a record of 9-11, 4.12.

On Dec. 8, 2009, the Diamondbacks traded Schzerer as part of a three-team deal with Daniel Schlereth to the Tigers. The Tigers sent Curtis Granderson to the New York Yankees. The Tigers also sent Edwin Jackson to the Diamondbacks. The Yankees sent Phil Coke and Austin Jackson to the Tigers, and Ian Kennedy to the Diamondbacks.

Scherzer went 12-11, 3.50 for the 2010 Tigers in 31 starts and 15-9, 4.43 for the 2011 Tigers in 33 starts.

Scherzer has a career 37-36 record and 4.02 ERA.

  • 2012: Scherzer made three starts, compiling a 1-1 record and a 7.98 ERA. He got off to a rough start, losing his first decision April 8 when the Red Sox battered him for seven earned runs on eight hits in 2.2 innings. Scherzer lost his second start when he received no run support in a 1-0 loss to the White Sox.
  • LAST START: April 18 vs. Kansas City, won his first game 4-3 over at Royals at Kauffman Stadium; allowed three earned runs on seven hits in 6.0 innings, striking out three and walking one; threw 94 pitches, 64 for strikes.
  • LAST VS. MARINERS: June 11, defeated Seattle 8-1 at Comerica Park, outdueling Michael Pineda; went 7.0 innings, allowing one earned run on four hits; Mariners run came on a triple by Ichiro and an RBI single by Brendan Ryan.
  • CAREER VS. MARINERS: 4-0 record with a 2.00 ERA in four games, all starts, covering 27 innings; strikes out 7.3 Mariners per 9 IP.
  • AT COMERICA PARK: 34 games, all starts, 16-8 record and 3.68 ERA covering 208 IP; averages 8.strikeouts per 9 innings.
  • LOVES TO FACE: Miguel Olivo (1-for-9, .111 BA, 4 K’s), Justin Smoak (1-for-8, .125 BA, 2 K’s), Chone Figgins (2-for-12, .167 BA, 1 K), Ichiro (2-for-12, .167 BA).
  • HATES TO FACE: Scherzer doesn’t hate to face any Mariner; no current regular is hitting better than .250 (Brendan Ryan) against him.
  • CURRENT MARINERS VS. SCHERZER: 10-for-66, .152 BA, .219 OBP; , 16 K’s, 3 RBIs.

AL WEST STANDINGS

Team W L Pct. GB Home Road Last 10 Streak
Rangers 13 4 .765 5-3 8-1 8-2 Lost 1
Athletics 8 10 .444 5.5 4-7 4-3 4-6 Lost 1
Mariners 7 10 .412 6.5 3-6 4-4 3-7 Lost 4
Angels 6 10 .375 7.0 4-6 2-4 4-6 Lost 1

MARINERS / STATS NOTES

  • The Mariners are 167-197 all-time against the Tigers, including 73-111 in Detroit.
  • The Mariners won the 2011 series, taking six of 10 meetings, including five of the seven played at Comerica Park, where Mariners are 27-29.
  • Seattle last swept a three-game series at Comerica April 26-28, getting wins from Felix Hernandez, Erik Bedard and Michael Pineda; Mariners outscored the Tigers in their 2011 meetings 54-37.
  • Detroit has not swept a three-game series from Seattle at Comerica Park since 2008.
  • Ichiro is a career .321 hitter against Detroit and a .347 hitter at Comerica Park (three home runs).
  • Mariners rank 13th in the AL in batting average (.223), last in on-base percentage (.274), 13th in slugging (.342) and 13th in OPS (.616).
  • Mariners are batting 30-for-128 (.234) with runners in scoring position; they went 2-for-13 Sunday.
  • Mariners have been out-homered 19-11.
  • Mariners have left 91 men on base, their opponents 102.
  • Mariners have scored 60 runs, their opponents 72.
  • Chone Figgins leads the Mariners with 75 outs.
  • Ichiro has 757 multi-hit games (2-for-5 Sunday), 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.
  • Felix Hernandez, who pitches Wednesday, has 16 career no-decisions while throwing 7 or more innings and allowing one or fewer runs.
  • 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.
  • Kyle Seager’s single in the fourth inning April 17 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).
  • Four  Mariners, Munenori Kawasaki, Hisashi Iwakuma, 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.
  • The Mariners have three more bobblehead nights: May 25 (Dustin Ackley), June 15 (Felix Hernandez), July 28 (Dan Wilson and Randy Johnson).
  • Series Records: Won 2, split 0, lost 3; Sweeps: 0; Swept: 1
  • Longest Win Streak: 2 (April 6-7, April 14-15).
  • Longest Losing Streak: 3 (April 19-21).

MARINERS WON-LOSS BREAKDOWN

Rec. Home Road Day Night vs. RHP vs. LHP Hit HR No HR
7-10 3-6 4-4 0-3 7-7 7-7 0-3 5-4 2-6

MARINERS BATTING PROFILE

Avg. Home Road R HR OBP SLG OPS RISP
.223 .195 .252 60 11 .274 .342 .616 .234

MARINERS PITCHING PROFILE

Rec. ERA IP R ER HR BA OBP SLG
7-10 4.17 151.0 72 69 19 .246 .301 .392

PROBABLE PITCHERS

Date Day Opp. Probable Pitchers
4/24 Tue at Det Vargas (2-1, 2.84) vs. Scherzer (1-1, 7.98)
4/25 Wed at Det Fernandez (1-1, 2.76) vs. Wilk (0-2, 4.00)
4/26 Thr at Det Noesi (1-2, 9.49) vs. Porcello (1-0, 1.84)

MARINERS 2012 SCHEDULE/RESULTS

March

Gm.# Date Opp. W/L Rec. Win / Loss
1 3/28 at Oak W, 3-1 1-0 W: Wilhelmsen (1-0); L: Carignan (0-1)
2 3/29 at Oak L, 4-1 1-1 W: Colon (1-0); L: Kelley (0-1)

April

Gm. # Date Opp. W/L Rec. Win / Loss
3 4/6 at Oak W, 7-3 2-1 W: Vargas (1-0); L: McCarthy (0-1)
4 4/7 at Oak W, 8-7 3-1 W: Hernandez (1-0); L: Colon (1-1)
5 4/9 at Tex L, 11-5 3-2 W: Darvish (1-0); L: Noesi (0-1)
6 4/10 at Tex L, 1-0 3-3 W: Feliz (1-0); L: Beavan (0-1)
7 4/11 at Tex W, 4-3 4-3 W: Luetge (1-0); L: Nathan (0-2)
8 4/12 at Tex L, 5-3 4-4 W: Holland (1-0); L: Vargas (1-1
9 4/13 vs Oak L, 4-0 4-5 W: Colon (2-1); L: Hernandez (1-1)
10 4/14 vs. Oak W, 4-0 5-5 W: Noesi (1-1); L: Milone (1-1)
11 4/15 vs. Oak W, 5-3 6-5 W: Beavan (1-1); L: Godfrey (0-2)
12 4/17 vs. Cle L, 9-8 6-6 W: Perez (0-1); L: Furbush (0-1)
13 4/18 vs. Cle W, 4-1 7-6 W: Vargas (2-1); L: Lowe (2-1)
14 4/19 vs. Cle L, 2-1 7-7 W: Tomlin (1-1); L: League (0-1)
15 4/20 vs. CWS L, 7-3 7-8 W: Sale (2-1); L: Noesi (1-2)
16 4/21 vs. CWS L, 4-0 7-9 W: Humber (1-0); Beavan (1-2)
17 4/22 vs. CWS L, 7-4 7-10 W: Danks (2-2); L: Millwood (0-1)
18 4/24 at Det
19 4/25 at Det
20 4/26 at Det
21 4/27 at Tor
22 4/28 at Tor
23 4/29 at Tor
24 4/30 at TB

YourThoughts

  • AaronNC

    Very disapointing to say the least. Im at a lost of words Seattle better come up with a new game plan soon, or Pete and Co. Will be jobless in Seattle! Looks like yet again another losing season, how many chances does Pete have 3 losing seasons. In the normal everyday world people performing at a bad level for there job would be fired. Where is Jim Mora

    • art thiel

      Mora is about the last answer, Carroll knows they’ve asked too much of Wilson, but barely. See answer above.

  • PokeyPuffy

    Having a strong run game is fine, but that alone will not cut it in the NFL. You win by scoring points, and i’ll bet i’m not alone in having zero confidence when late in the fourth quarter they had essentially the last possession and the possibility to secure a road win. I started planning my yardwork for the day at that point

    RW has had 3 late-4th quarter possessions in which he could get it over the top, he is 0-3 in those situations….(assuming we discount GB as we should, he looked equally befuddled)

    • art thiel

      Nothing about RW’s play should be a surprise, given his rookieness and physical limits. The coaches are responsible for designing a game plan he can win with. It’s close: they could 4-0 as easily as 1-3.

  • jafabian

    Wilson’s inexperience has really shown the past couple games. At some point Carroll has to wonder if Flynn would be any better, especially if they want to make the playoffs.

    • art thiel

      Stay tuned. Carroll said Flynn’s elbow is hurting. How convenient.

  • Josh

    A little over reaction on the play call last week. Funny how the pro refs nearly cost GB another win today.

  • Bayview Herb

    I thought the Seahalws came out flat, perhaps overconfident even. No way the offensive coordinater was fooling anyone with his calls either. The Rams had our offense figured out perfectly and we didn’t adapt.

    • art thiel

      They went 80 in 8 plays in their first drive. That was not coming out flat. The OC has dumbed down the playbook for Wilson, so they’re taking a risk, and paid for it Sunday.

  • ryanvdonk

    bevell may be the worst play caller in the league, completely predictable 90% of the time, but the other 10% are headscratchers with a low chance of working. time to hand over those reigns to someone else on staff…maybe cable?

    • art thiel

      As far as Sunday, he wasn’t predictable enough. When Lynch is getting 7 a pop, don’t throw the ball on 3rd-and-2. Additonally, they’ve dumbed down th playbook for Wilson’s benefit, which makes sense on paper, but they’ve gone too far to benefit the team.

  • Kevin

    I was a big Wilson fan after the Kansas City pre-season game, but now I’m not as sold on him. Where’s the crafty QB who seemed a step ahead of everybody on the field? Yes, he’s young and learning. Yes, he’s kept the team in every game. Yes, he hasn’t made typical rookie mistakes by forcing throws into double or triple coverages. But still… this offense should be moving the ball better. With the best RB in the game, there should be plenty of opportunities to throw the ball downfield. I love the kid and I hope he does well, but how much shorter is the leash on him now (Flynn’s injury notwithstanding)?

  • art thiel

    Players who stood for the refs against the NFL also get a bonus: Roster expansion to include two 2 Lingerie League players per team.

  • art thiel

    Fair point to say Flynn didn’t get a full shot. You’re calling it a fail after four games, but now we learn this morning that Flynn supposedly can’t throw more than 15 reps in practice because of his elbow. There’s more going on, naturally, than we’re being told. So hold off on the fail.

  • art thiel

    The capable guy, we learn this morning, has a sore elbow. And even he would have the same problems lining up behind the current pass protection. But he would be quicker to check down.