For the third day in a row the Mariners are throwing a turd of a pitcher at the wall that is the Padres' lineup. Let's hope Joe Saunders doesn't stick as well as Aaron Harang did on Sunday, and instead slides down the wall the way Brandon Maurer did yesterday. Saunders is 3-5 with a 6.09 ERA this season, giving up four or more earned runs in six of his ten starts. He allowed six earned runs over five innings in his last start, a loss to Texas.
Five members of today's Padres starting lineup have history with Saunders. SS Everth Cabrera is 2-3 with a triple, and RF Kyle Blanks has three singles in ten at bats. CF Chris Denorfia is 6-24 with no extra-base hits, while Jesus Guzman is 3-12 with a homer. Chase Headley owns a .368 lifetime average against Saunders with two doubles and a triple to go with four singles. 4-5-6 batters Yasmani Grandal, Jedd Gyorko, and Yonder Alonso will be popping their Saunders cherries.
Getting the start on the hill for the Friars will be Eric Stults. He hasn't had the greatest year so far but it's been better than Saunders's. He has a 4-4 record over ten starts with a 4.22 ERA and has allowed three or less earned runs in six of those. He wasn't at his best his last time out, when he surrendered four earned runs over 6.1 innings against Arizona.
Seattle RF Endy Chavez has singled once in three times up against Stults. Everybody else in the Mariners' starting order will be facing him for the first time.
So, grab a cold beer, a lukewarm water, or whatever your commenting fuel of choice is and start pregaming. And breathe easy; only a week or so until jodes returns from way across the sea and you'll once again have previews and game threads that don't suck.