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W2W4: Rangers at Mariners

8/25/2014

The Rangers begin a 10-game road trip Monday night in Seattle.

Here’s a preview:

What’s up with the Mariners? A three-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox over the weekend pushed the Mariners to a one-game lead over Detroit for the second AL wild-card spot. Seattle is 15-5 in its last 20 games and 65-18 when the Mariners score three or more runs. 2B Robinson Cano (.326/.394/.465) left Sunday’s game with dizziness related to the flu. He’s questionable for the Rangers series. 3B Kyle Seager leads the Mariners with 19 HRs and 80 RBIs. 1B Logan Morrison has an eight-game hit streak and has 21 hits in the last 22 games.

What’s up with the Rangers? The Rangers are 27 games behind first place in the AL West and have been outscored by a major-league high 139 runs. The Rangers lead the season-series against the Mariners, 7-5, and the teams play seven more times this season. Against the AL West, the Rangers are just 19-30. 3B Adrian Beltre is hitting .500 the last eight games and has had multiple hits in five consecutive games. CF Leonys Martin is tied for the AL lead with the Los Angeles Angels Erick Aybar with nine bunt hits. LF/DH Shin-Soo Choo missed Sunday’s game with the flu and will make the trip to Seattle.

Against the King: Felix Hernandez will face the Rangers on Wednesday afternoon. In three 2014 starts, Hernandez is 0-1 with two no-decisions. Hernandez, while considered one of the more dominant pitchers of his generation, is 12-21 in 42 career starts against the Rangers with 239 strikeouts in 269 innings. The Rangers, meanwhile, are hitting just .178 against him. Elvis Andrus has 12 RBIs and a .307 career average against him and Beltre is hitting .294. Alex Rios is batting just .244.

The matchups: Monday: RHP Miles Mikolas (1-5, 7.48) vs. LHP Roenis Elias (9-10, 4.09), Tuesday: RHP Nick Martinez (3-9, 5.13) vs. LHP James Paxton (3-1, 2.20), Wednesday: RHP Colby Lewis (8-11, 5.54) vs. RHP Felix Hernandez (13-4, 2.07).