Extra-inning winners Friday (9-5), the Mariners encounter a familiar face — although a bearded one — when they battle Brandon Morrow of the Blue Jays Saturday.
GAME: Mariners (11-10, T 2 AL West, – 4.5 GB) at Blue Jays (10-10, 4th, AL East, – 3.0 GB). GAME #: 22. SERIES: 2nd of 3 games. MEETING (2012): 2nd (Mariners lead 1-0). WHEN: Saturday, 1:07 p.m. Rogers Center, Toronto, Canada. PROBABLE PITCHERS: RHP Kevin Millwood (Seattle, 0-1, 7.04) vs. RHP Brandon Morrow (Toronto, 1-1, 3.71). STREAKS: Mariners W 4; Blue Jays L 4. TV: ROOT Sports, MLB TV. RADIO: KIRO 710 (Seattle), Mariners Radio Network.
When, in December of 2009, the Mariners dispatched Brandon Morrow to the Toronto Blue Jays (in a trade that netted Seattle closer Brandon League), they still hadn’t determined whether Morrow would be better suited to start or relieve. The club had tried him in both roles, waffling all the while.
Toronto had no such misgivings. Morrow quickly established himself as a part of the Blue Jays’ rotation and, since the trade, has twice beaten his former employers, averaging more than 13 K’s per nine innings pitched against them.
Morrow makes his third career start against Seattle in a Rogers Center matinee Saturday, opposite Kevin Millwood, still seeking his first victory in Seattle flannels. A closer look at Saturday’s probables:
MARINERS: RHP Kevin Millwood (0-1, 7.04 ERA, 1.76 WHIP)
The 37-year-old Millwood, in his 16th major league season and first with the Mariners, will be making his fourth start of the season and his first against the Blue Jays.
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, who has coughed up leads in each of his past two starts, has a career record of 163-141, 4.12 ERA into Saturday’s game.
Millwood / 2012
BLUE JAYS: RHP Brandon Morrow (1-1, 3.71 ERA, 1.13 WHIP)
The 27-year-old Morrow, in his sixth major league season and third with Toronto, will be making his fifth start of the 2012 season and his first against the Mariners.
A native of Santa Rosa, CA., 6-3, 200-pound Morrow made All-America at the University of California and was a first-round selection (fifth overall pick) by the Seattle Mariners in the 2006 amateur draft.
Morrow began his pro career in the Mariners system at Arizona (Rookie League) in 2006 and advanced to Inland Empire (2006) before making his major league debut April 3, 2007, against Oakland. Morrow pitched 1.0 innings and received a no-decision.
Morrow worked strictly in relief in his first year (60 appearances) and began the transformation into a starting pitcher in 2008. But the Mariners never could figure out whether Morrow was best suited to start or relieve.
In 131 games with Seattle, Morrow made 15 starts. During his time with the Mariners, he went 8-12, 3.96.
On Dec. 23, 2009, the Mariners traded Morrow to the Blue Jays for Johermyn Chavez (minors) and Brandon League. Morrow has been a full-time starter since the trade. He went 10-7, 4.49 in 2010 and 11-11, 3.79 in 2011.
Morrow will bring a career record of 30-31, 4.34 into Saturdays game at the Rogers Center.
AL WEST STANDINGS
MARINERS / STATS NOTES
2012 RECORDS SET, TIED
MARINERS WON-LOSS BREAKDOWN
|Rec.||Home||Road||Day||Night||vs. RHP||vs. LHP||Hit HR||No HR|
MARINERS BATTING PROFILE
MARINERS PITCHING PROFILE
|4/28||Sat||at Tor||Millwood (0-1, 7.04) vs. Morrow (1-1, 3.71)|
|4/29||Sun||at Tor||Vargas (3-1, 3.45) vs. Alvarez (0-2, 4.10)|
|4/30||Mon||at TB||Hernandez (2-1, 2.48) vs. Hellickson (3-0, 2.84)|
|5/1||Tue||at TB||Noesi (1-2, 8.83) vs. Moore (0-1, 4.68)|
|5/2||Wed||at TB||Beavan (1-2, 3.26) vs. Shields (3-0, 2.76)|
|5/3||Thr||at TB||Millwood (today) vs. Niemann (1-2, 4.11)|
MARINERS 2012 SCHEDULE/RESULTS
|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)|
|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||W, 7-4||8-10||W: Vargas (3-1); L: Scherzer (1-2)|
|19||4/25||at Det||W, 9-1||9-10||W: Fernandez (2-1); L: Wilk (0-3)|
|20||4/26||at Det||W, 5-4||10-10||W: Furbush (1-1); L: Porcello (1-2)|
|21||4/27||at Tor||W, 9-5||11-10||W: Furbush (2-1); L: Perez (2-1)|