Minnesota Twins fans finally have something worth cheering for this season. They currently sit with the second-best winning percentage in the MLB, only trailing the Houston Astros. The Seattle Mariners started the same way as the Twins. They were pissing excellence through their first 14 games as they were 12-2. They now sit with a 22-23 record. These two teams meet up for a four-game series in Seattle starting tonight. I hate watching west coast baseball, mainly because of the time zone. The game doesn’t start until 9 CT and that means that I’ll have to stay up past midnight to watch the end of the game. The match up on the mound tonight is Michael Pineda versus Erik Swanson.
Line – Minnesota -112, Seattle -108
Spread – Minnesota -1.5
O/U – 9.5
First Pitch – 9:10 p.m. CT at T-Mobile Park, Seattle, Washington
Michael Pineda has been a huge bump every time his turn comes up in the pitching rotation. He has been the definition of inconsistency as his control of the baseball can be chaotic and he gives up about one big inning to the opposing team every game. Their bullpen has been just as shaky over the last several games as well. There are currently only three guys in their bullpen that I trust, and they are Taylor Rogers, Trevor May, and Blake Parker. Minnesota is coming off of a game where they were forced to pitch six relief pitchers. If they win this game tonight, it will be because of their bats.
The Twins are still getting on base at a 33% clip which isn’t too shabby. Jorge Polanco has been the rock for this offense so far this season. He is currently third in the league in WAR, and his .331/.398/.624 slash line isn’t hurting either. Minnesota is also getting Miguel Sano back tonight, and with the Twins on pace to hit over 270 home runs this season, that number will continue to climb.
The Mariners have gone 10-21 since their insanely hot start. That’s not great. Their team batting average has dipped down to .242, but their pitching is what is really killing them right now. Seattle’s team ERA is 4.75 and their WHIP is pretty bad too at 1.42. Swanson gets the nod tonight and he is coming off of a start where he got rocked by Boston. He allowed seven runs over 4.2 innings pitched. Swanson pitches to contact and he has really struggled getting outs this season. He has allowed 36 base runners in the 28.1 innings pitched so far. The AL West is the Astros’ division and it will be for a while. No one expected the Mariners to compete this season, and they aren’t. I hope Seattle fans enjoyed that great start to their season.
Analysis & Prediction
Take the Twins money line tonight. It’s not too often that you find a starting pitcher with an ERA that is higher than Pineda’s, but Swanson is that guy. Bet on Minnesota’s bats to win game one of this series. Also, don’t be afraid to hammer the over of 9.5 as well. There will be no shortage of runs scored tonight.
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