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AL Preview and Free Pick
Seattle is in the Big Apple with bat-bad intentions. The Mariners have fallen at the hands of those Yanks in seven straight Bronx contests. The Mariners and NY Yankees are schedule to see first pitch at 6:35 p.m. ET at new Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York, New York. Seattle has slated left-hander Yusei Kikuchi (1-1, 3.98 ERA) for tonight’s start and he opposed Yankees righty Jonathan Loaisiga (1-0, 2.70). AL Preview and Free Pick: Yanks vs Mariners. AL Preview and Free Pick: Yanks vs Mariners.
The Mariners haven’t simply dropped seven straight at Yankee Stadium they have lost 15 of 18 overall to New York. If there were a time to end a number of their losing streaks versus the Yankees it would be when New York is hamstrung with a large number of key injuries. Japanese import Kikuchi pitched the first inning in the Mariners “Opener” this past Friday. The organization has a rigid plan to keep Kikuchi’s innings in line with those he tossed professionally in Japan. The lefty has never pitched more than 190 innings over the course of a season.
The M’s southpaw has a extremely deceptive delivery. Kikuchi is extremely adept at hiding the ball through a long wind up making it difficult for hitters who have faced him before. For those who haven’t experienced live at-bats versus the M’s starter it is advantage Kikuchi.
Loaisiga is back in the Bigs for another sports start. Loaisiga was called up from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to pitch in place of the injured James Paxton. The turn today against Seattle is Loaisiga’s third start this season for New York.
The southpaw has been graded as the top pitching prospect in the Yanks farm system. His last trip with the parent club saw him work three scoreless innings of two-hit ball to pick up the win versus the Angels in Los Angeles in late April. Loaisiga has faced a number of the Mariners bats. He squared off against the M’s last June in his second career start and gave up three runs in 3 2/3 frames.
In what is forecast to be cool night in the Bronx, game time temps in the mid-60’s with a 5-10 m.p.h. breeze blowing in from center field, expect a quiet night offensively from both teams. The two pitchers have the advantage the first two times through the lineup and both pitch to a style that is deceptive, especially the first and second time around.
A well-rested Kikuchi turned in a dominant performance his last time out at Cleveland and is holding the opposition to a .232 batting average against this season. And while Loaisiga isn’t a regular member of the Bombers he is a mature and seasoned 24-year old.