After losing the final two games to the Houston Astros the Seattle Mariners take on the Philadelphia Phillies for two games before another off-day and then three games in Los Angeles against the Angels before returning home for another series to complete most of June.
The Mariners did a great job against the Phillies when they were in Philadelphia recently so I figure that these two games they should handle them. We hope that James Paxton can rebound from his last three outings and Felix Hernandez can do what he did in his return to the mound last Friday against the Astros in the Mariners only win in the series.
The key to this series and in fact for the remaining of the season is that the starters can go at least six inning and giving up no more than three runs. With that happening we would only see three relief pitchers in any given game at the most. Having the off-day on Monday the relief pitchers will have some rest. Until Andrew Moore returns next week to make a start the Mariners will have nine relief pitchers to go with. Depending on the offense as well scoring enough runs the Mariners could have rookie Max Povse, Danny Altavilla and Yovani Gallardo able to go at least two innings in the next three games. This would leave six relievers to go no more than one inning in these three games. All works out the Mariners could repeat this as often as they can. Of course with an off day on Thursday the Mariners could go with only two of the three between Povse, Altavilla and Gallardo. Having last pitched three innings after Felix last Friday having Gallardo ready to go on Wednesday would be the way to go. If any of the games are close like a one run lead by the Mariners then I would go with Nick Vincent followed by Steve Cishek and then Edwin Diaz. When needed the two lefties can face any tough left handed batters late in the game. Tony Zych will be in the role of either pitching one or two innings as well.
The next thing is what Dipoto will do in July before the trading deadline. He could go after another starter or a reliever depending on the asking price. Also I could see going for a catcher to help spell Zunino. The only position would be an upgrade at utility. Taylor Motter has been struggling at the plate lately though he does play solid defense. A first baseman to help spell Danny Valencia would be nice too. In the end though pitching would be the first priority to upgrade the team. Go M’s.