Tonight’s interleague matchup between the Marlins and Mariners will feature two teams that have played in entirely opposite ways over the past ten games. Miami will enter tonight 8-2 over their last ten, while Seattle sits at 3-7. We’ll preview the first game of their three-game series before going over why I’ll be targeting the total in this one.
With their series win over the White Sox this past weekend, the Marlins have won four out of their last five series. In their 6-5 win yesterday to secure the series, the Marlins scored three runs in the ninth inning to overcome a 5-3 deficit. Behind Jean Segura’s solo home run and Bryan De La Cruz’s two-RBI double, Miami managed to hand the White Sox bullpen a crushing loss.
Miami’s late-inning comeback does overshadow a phenomenal start from Braxton Garrett, who struck out nine and allowed no runs over 5 ⅓ innings. As Miami looks to continue their impressive play, they will send lefty Jesús Luzardo to the mound for his 14th start. Luzardo has pitched to a 3.79 ERA over 73.7 innings with 86 strikeouts and 20 walks. The lefty was dominant in his last outing, in which he went seven innings with eight strikeouts and one run allowed.
Luzardo will face a Mariners lineup that has not lived up to expectations this season. Seattle comes into tonight off a series loss to the Angels, which concluded yesterday with a 9-4 defeat. The Mariners were able to pick up nine hits, but they left 16 runners on base. Leaving runners in scoring position left Seattle unable to score more than two runs in an inning and keep pace with the Angels after they forced Logan Gilbert out of the game.
With Seattle looking to gain positive momentum, they will have young right-hander Bryce Miller on the mound. Miller was highly impressive in his first five big league starts, as he did not allow more than three earned runs in that stretch. Unfortunately for the Mariners faithful, the right-hander has allowed 15 runs over his past two outings and was unable to make it out of the fourth inning in either of those starts.
The total for this game currently sits at 7.5, and I’ll be taking the over for my play. Seattle has had four of their last five games go over this total, and despite their struggles, they face a matchup in which they have been successful over the past month. Conversely, the surging Marlins offense faces a starter that has been figured out a bit more now that the scouting report is fully out on him.
Miami is 8th in wRC+, 8th in OPS, and 6th in wOBA against right-handed pitching on the road over the past month. They’ll face Bryce Miller, who has a FIP of 3.12 but an expected FIP of 4.29. The right-hander has seen his hard-hit percentage go from 28.6% in his fifth start to 47.6% and 53.8% over his last two outings, while his strikeout percentage has decreased exponentially.
On the other side, the Mariners are 11th in wRC+ and 14th in wOBA against left-handed pitching at home over the past month, and Jesús Luzardo has struggled mightily on the road this season. In 26.1 road innings, the lefty has a 5.13 ERA and a batting average allowed of .324. Opponents have a BAbip of .413 against him when he’s pitching on the road, and with the Mariners desperate for some momentum, I think they come out aggressive tonight.