Series Preview: Detroit Tigers

The Mariners head to Comerica Park 10 games over .500 hopeful that they can continue to build momentum. Detroit has been playing better and stands in their way. The three-game series starts Friday.

Comerica Park, Detroit, Mich.

Seattle Mariners (25-15, 11-7 road)
Detroit Tigers (9-29, 3-14 home)

Pitching Matchups:

Friday, May 16, 4:05 p.m.
Seattle: Gil Meche (4-2, 2.86 ERA)
Detroit: Jeremy Bonderman (2-5, 5.59)

Saturday, May 17, 10:05 a.m.
Seattle: Jamie Moyer (5-2, 3.61)
Detroit: Nate Cornejo (3-2, 2.66)

Sunday, May 18, 10:05 a.m.
Seattle: Joel Pineiro (3-3, 4.11)
Detroit: Mike Maroth (0-8, 5.27)


Who's Hot:

Seattle: Edgar Martinez isn't just hot, he's scorching. Edgar has five homers in his last seven games and is 8 for his last 23. Ichiro, Mike Cameron and Jeff Cirillo are others tearing the cover off the ball. Ichiro is batting at a .423 clip over the last six games and has the season average hiked up to .296. Cameron is 7 for his last 17 and has cut down his strikouts. He fanned just three times last week and has the average up to .287. Thank you Chicago Whitesox. Cirillo, who saw his average dip down to .036 two weeks into the season, is showing signs of breaking out. He has 8 hits in his last 22 at bats and is up to .245 for the season. On the mound, Giovanni Carrara has pitched six scoreless innings of relief in the last week. Starters Jamie Moyer and Ryan Franklin are both pitching well. Franklin is 2-0 in his last three starts, and would have likely made it 3-0 had it not been for a 148-minute rain delay on Thursday. Moyer went seven innings and gave up two runs to the White Sox in his last start, a win.

Detroit: Shane Halter is 7 for his last 19 with a homerun and three RBI. Fellow infielder Ramon Santiago is 4 for his last 10. Eric Munson, once the No. 1 prospect in the Detroit organization, has two homers in his last four games and is warming up. Former Mariner Gene Kingsale, who formerly went by Eugene, has the highest average on the team at .281 in 71 at bats. He played for the San Diego Padres last season. Right-handed pitcher Nate Cornejo, only 23, is the hottest Tigers pitcher with consecutive wins over Baltimore and Tampa Bay.


Who's Not:

Seattle: John Olerud continues to slump. He's batting just .190 in his last six games and as a result his averaged has dipped down to an uncharacteristic .272. On the mound, Freddy Garcia and Joel Pineiro both have yet to find their groove. Garcia gave up seven runs to the poor-hitting Indians on Wednesday (4 earned) for his second bad outing in a row. Pineiro has gotten the benefit of run support, but has struggled with finding the strike zone. The statistics don't like; he's walked 25 in 50.1 innings pitched.

Detroit: Mike Maroth, who started the season as the Tigers' ace of the staff, is winless through the first month-and-a-half of the season. He's kept Detroit in nearly every game he's started, but come up on the short end of the stick each and every time thus far. Catcher Brandon Inge, infielder Omar Infante, and outfielders Andres Torres, Bobby Higginson and Craig Monroe were a combined 11-for-87 last week. Not good.


Notes:

Tigers pitcher Steve Avery, 32, is back in the major leagues after a four-year absence and won his first game since returning on May 14th versus Oakland. He recorded only one out, coming on a strikeout, but that was enough to get the decision… Tigers outfielder Andres Torres, a speedy young basestealer, has only one steal in 15 games since being recalled from Triple-A Toledo.


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