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MLB Game Preview: Texas Rangers vs. Seattle Mariners - 4/26/2019 - 10:10 PM EST
Posted: Friday, April 26, 2019 by CapperTekSEO
Texas Rangers[4]
+1.5 (-150)
Over 9 (-114)
Seattle Mariners[5]
-1.5 (+135)
Under 9 (+103)

MLB Game Preview: Texas Rangers vs. Seattle Mariners - Date: 4/26/2019 Kikuchi to 'open' for Mariners against Rangers One of the reasons left-hander Yusei Kikuchi signed with the Seattle Mariners in the offseason was the unique wellness plan they pitched to him.Trying to avoid the injuries that have befallen Japanese stars like Yu Darvish, Shohei Ohtani and Daisuke Matsuzaka once they started pitching every five days in the majors as compared to the six-man rotations they use overseas, the Mariners will use Kikuchi as an "opener" about once a month, pitching just the first inning or so before handing the ball to one of Seattle's pitching prospects.That plan will be put to use for the first time Friday night against the visiting Texas Rangers.Kikuchi (1-1, 4.68 ERA) is scheduled to start against Rangers right-hander Shelby Miller (1-1, 7.63), who won his only previous appearance against Seattle. Lefty Justus Sheffield, the Mariners' No. 1 prospect, is set to make his debut for the team in relief of Kikuchi after being recalled from Triple-A Tacoma."(Kikuchi) understands what we are shooting for. It's about getting him through the whole season," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "He's still going to make the start; he's still going to go through his routine and throw his bullpen in between starts like he'd normally do. He's just not going to go out and throw 95 pitches." Sheffield, acquired in the offseason trade that sent left-hander James Paxton to the New York Yankees, came on in the second inning of Tacoma's game Monday in Albuquerque to get used to the role."He's come out of the bullpen before and the key is to come in, throw strikes and attack them," Servais said. "The catcher will have the plan and just stay with the catcher. Just simplify it. Football Picks. That's what I would tell any young pitcher making his first start or first appearance. Just simplify it and trust your stuff." The Mariners won the opener of the four-game series 14-2 Thursday night, taxing an already beleaguered Texas bullpen.Long reliever Kyle Dowdy started Wednesday because Drew Smyly was scratched due to "nerve tightness" in his left arm. And Lance Lynn lasted just four innings Tuesday.Rangers left-hander Taylor Hearn, making his major league debut, failed to get out of the first inning Thursday.The 24-year-old faced eight batters and recorded only one out before being pulled after 39 pitches. He allowed five runs (four earned) on three hits and four walks."You never want to do that obviously for a kid's major league debut," Rangers manager Chris Woodward said of pulling the rookie. "Before the game, I talked to him. He was in good spirits and he was calm. I think if he would have gotten through that first inning, things would have been a little bit different. Obviously, the big leagues are tough. You get out there and things don't go your way, especially the first time out, you don't really have anything to base it off. He'll learn from that. A lot of our guys talked to him during the game. He came back and sat in the dugout. I saw him talking to (Hunter) Pence. I saw him talking to (Lance) Lynn. I had a few words with him. He'll learn from that. Hopefully, 15 years from now, he'll have a memorable first outing." --Field Level Media


Game Preview from The Associated Press (AP).

Copyright © 2020 The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved.

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