Seattle Mariners Eyeing The AL West Division Crown
The Seattle Mariners are 17-5 for the month of August and as a result of them playing their hottest baseball of the season, they have moved into the top spot in the AL West division, tied with the Texas Rangers at 72-56.
Over the last 10 games, the Mariners are 9-1, while the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros haven played under .500 ball. The Rangers are 2-8 and the Astros are 4-6, in their last 10. The Los Angeles Angels, who decided not to trade Shohei Ohtani and added bats to their lineup, have fallen out of contention as they sit 10.5 out of first and 9.5 out of a Wild Card spot.
For all of that, the Mariners look to have a clear path to the division, as long as they continue with their winning ways.
In the beginning of August, Seattle swept a four-game series with the Angels. Then after going 6-3 against the San Diego Padres, Baltimore Orioles and Kansas City Royals, the Mariners traveled to Houston and swept the Astros in three games. If there was any indication that the Mariners were good, was in that sweep. The Astros are no where playing at the level that they have played over the past few years, but they are still the mighty Astros, but we may have to give that moniker to the Mariners, who are the hottest team in the AL as of August 26.
After the Astros series, they took two out of three from the Chicago White Sox and beat the Royals in the opening game of their three game set on Friday.
A lot has changed for the Seattle Mariners over the last 37 days ? pic.twitter.com/PauVLRvSPg
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) August 26, 2023
Over the past two weeks, Julio Rodriguez has been tearing up the baseball by batting .455 through 11 games. The center fielder, who is in his sophomore season, is currently on a 10-game hitting streak, which included a record four straight games with at least four hits, from August 16-19. During the streak he has scored eight runs, hit five doubles, two home runs, 14 RBIs, and eight stolen bases. So far in the month of August, he has hit safely in 18 of the 20 games he has played in.
Teoscar Hernandez is right on Rodriguez’s tail with the hot bat, as he is hitting .389 through his last 13 games. Josh Rojas is batting .368 through his last 11 games and Cal Raleigh has launched four home runs over his last 13 games, which included a two-homer game on August 21st.
On the mound, Luis Castillo is 4-0 in his last seven games, and 3-0 for the month of August. In his last outing against the White Sox on August 21st, he tossed seven strong innings, allowing just one run on five hits, no walks and nine strikeouts. The bullpen has been pretty much lights out, with Gabe Speier, Trent Thornton and rookies Isaiah Campbell and Justin Topa leading the way.
On the current homestand, the Mariner’s will battle on Saturday and Sunday with the Royals and then start off next week against the 38-91 Oakland Athletics. The Rangers, Astros and Mariners are all vying for a post season spot, with either one of the three winning the division and the other two grabbing a wild card spot.
The month of September will be very interesting as Mariners are set to face their division rivals 12 times, with three games against the Angels and Astros and seven games against the Rangers, that takes them to Oct 1st and the end of the regular season.
The AL West looked to be all Rangers, but a new cowboy is in town and looking to spoil their party. Can the Mariners continue to be the spoilers? They think they can be and we all get to watch it all unfold.
Baseball at it’s finest!
Foot. Pedal. Gas. pic.twitter.com/SDf6UKY6kD
— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) August 26, 2023