American League Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, July 30th (All times Eastern)
Toronto Blue Jays (51-50) at Seattle Mariners (44-57), 10:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Toronto - Ricky Romero (8-7, 5.75) Seattle - Hisahi Iwakuma (1-2, 4.56)
(Sports Network) - The 2012 season is pretty much a wash for the Seattle Mariners, but they're beginning to get their act together. The Mariners will continue their homestand at Safeco Field tonight with the first of three straight games versus the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Mariners, who recently traded away fan favorite Ichiro Suzuki, posted a four-game sweep of the Kansas City Royals and recorded a 7-6 triumph in Sunday's series finale. Kyle Seager finished with three hits, two RBI and two runs scored, while Mark Carp added three hits and drove in a run.
Munenori Kawasaki scored the go-ahead run on a throwing error in the eighth inning after the Royals posted three runs in the top half.
"Anytime they score you want to look to come back right away, don't want to let a little momentum go," Seager said. "We've done a good job this series of scoring early and then trying to match them when they score."
Seattle ace Felix Hernandez threw seven innings of two-run ball in the no- decision and Oliver Perez got the final out of the eighth inning for the win. Tom Wilhelmsen allowed a run in the ninth, but managed to hold on for his 14th save for the Mariners, who are aiming for a season-high fifth straight win tonight and own a 5-2 record on a 10-game residency.
Hisashi Iwakuma hopes to win as a starter for the first time when he toes the rubber for the streaking Mariners Monday. Iwakuma is 1-2 with a 4.56 earned run average in 18 games (4 starts) this season, but is 0-2 in his last two decisions. The right-hander, who captured his first major league win in relief back on June 16 versus San Francisco, tossed five solid innings and allowed one run for a no-decision in a 5-2 loss to the New York Yankees on Wednesday.
Iwakuma took on Toronto for the first time in a 7-0 setback up north on April 28th and was hammered for four runs and three hits in an inning of relief.
Meanwhile, the Blue Jays were aiming for a three-game sweep of Detroit, but dropped a 4-1 score in Sunday's series finale.
Brett Cecil was charged with three runs in 6 2/3 innings for the loss and Colby Rasmus drove in the club's only run. Rajai Davis had two hits and scored the lone run for Toronto, which went 3-3 on its homestand.
"I thought Brett did his job, keeping us in the game," said Toronto manager John Farrell of Cecil. "After the three-run homer in the second, he settled down."
Farrell's club will commence a 10-game trek tonight against the Mariners, Athletics and Rays, and has won three in a row away from Rogers Centre.
Toeing the rubber for the Jays Monday will be shaky left-hander Ricky Romero. Romero is 0-6 with a 10.48 earned run average in his last six starts and was torched by Oakland in Wednesday's 16-0 setback, as he gave up eight runs and six walks in only 1 1/3 innings to fall to 8-7 in 20 outings this season.
The Blue Jays haven't scored in each of Romero's last four starts (25-0). He is 1-1 with a 3.51 ERA in six career starts against Seattle.
Toronto won two of three meetings with Seattle at home from April 27-29 this season and is 8-2 in the past 10 matchups between the clubs.
07/30 10:52:33 ET