Mariners will try to stay hot in warm Chicago
Beautiful day in Chicago as the temps are already at 90 degrees at 1 p.m. in the afternoon. So the Mariners will have warm weather in which to try to continue their eight-game winning streak, but it won’t be easy this weekend as they face the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field.
The Sox are leading the AL Central at 68-55 and are fresh off their first three-game sweep of the Yankees in Chicago since 2000.
Something has to give in this series, either the Mariners current hot streak or their long cold streak in the Windy City where Seattle has won just three of its last 19.
The Mariners are 4-21 against the White Sox overall over the past three years and their 1-5 mark this year includes the perfect game of Philip Humber in April in Safeco Field.
So history says the Mariners are in tough. But history also holds another interesting note. On this Aug. 24 date in 1995, the Mariners began their improbable turnaround when they were 11 1/2 back of the Angels in the standings and trailing the Yankees by a run with two out in the ninth inning.
That’s when Vince Coleman stole two bases and scored the tying run on Joey Cora’s single and Ken Griffey Jr. hit John Wetteland’s next pitch into the second deck of the Kingdome to begin what turned out to be a crazy late-season run to the playoffs.
The current Mariners, at 61-64, are only 6 1/2 out of a wild-card berth as we speak. The difference is they have far more teams ahead of them this time. While the Angels helped with their ’95 collapse, these Mariners would need help on multiple fronts to leapfrog three teams in the current wild-card jumble.
But, yeah, there’s a chance, at least if the Mariners keep playing good baseball. Just having more meaningful games in late August is a nice step forward.
Here are the pitching matchups for this series, starting with a good matchup tonight:
Friday: LH Jason Vargas (13-8, 3.53) vs. RH Jake Peavy (9-9, 3.11), 5:10 p.m. PT
Saturday: RH Blake Beavan (8-7, 5.00) vs. LH Jose Quintana (5-2, 2.76), 4:10 p.m. PT
Sunday: RH Kevin Millwood (4-10, 4.29) vs. RH Gavin Floyd (8-8, 4.56), 11:10 a.m. PT