video thumbnail

SEA@HOU: Hernandez strikes out six over five frames

The A's and Mariners will converge for a traditional doubleheader on Wednesday in Oakland to complete a four-game series.

Oakland last hosted such an event July 16, 2011, against the Angels, marking the only other time the Coliseum's seen one over the last 16 years.

Seattle ace Felix Hernandez and A's righty Dan Straily are slated to meet in the first game of the doubleheader, brought on by a rainout of April 4's scheduled matchup between the two clubs.

Right-hander Erasmo Ramirez will start for the Mariners in Game 2. Drew Pomeranz is scheduled to start Game 2 unless he's needed to pitch in relief in the opener. If that's the case, Arnold Leon was recalled from Triple-A on Wednesday and will make his Major League debut.

Either way, Leon -- 2-1 with a 4.34 ERA in six starts for Sacramento -- was excited for the chance to pitch in the Majors.

"First time in the big leagues, it's going to be a great moment," he said. "All my family's going to be here. It's going to be a special day."

Ramirez began the season in the Mariners' rotation, going 1-3 with a 6.75 ERA and 1.58 WHIP before being optioned to Class A Advanced High Desert on April 24. The 24-year-old Nicaraguan made one start with the Mavericks before making another with Triple-A Tacoma.

Hernandez, meanwhile, was hit with a flu bug during his last start in Houston and struggled to get through five innings. The right-hander gave up two earned runs (three total) on five hits and a pair of walks while striking out three in a no-decision.

He has not recorded a win since improving to 3-0 on April 11 against the A's, despite recording a 2.88 ERA over his next four starts. Hernandez is 17-7 with a 2.60 ERA all-time against the A's and undefeated in his last 10 starts at the Coliseum (5-0, 2.76 ERA).

Straily has struggled to a 5.01 ERA through six starts. He most recently allowed two runs on four hits and three walks with three strikeouts while lasting just 4 1/3 innings against the Red Sox.

Straily fired a first-pitch strike to just three of his 20 batters, leading to a trio of walks, and recorded outs against only 13 of them. In all, he threw more balls (42) on the night than strikes (40), a first in his career.

"That's the problem," said manager Bob Melvin. "When he doesn't get ahead, then he's pretty predictable and they can get good swings on his fastball. When he does get ahead, he's a lot better with his breaking stuff."

A's: Reddick moving past ankle injury
Despite suffering a sprained left ankle on Sunday, A's outfielder Josh Reddick is likely to start at least one of his club's two games on Wednesday.

Reddick has been taking part in most baseball activities this week and was considered available off the bench the past two days, even though Melvin initially believed he would miss more than a couple of games.

The outfielder is hitless in his last 14 at-bats, after compiling 16 hits in his previous 37.

Mariners: Left handed-heavy lineup struggling vs. right-handers
Despite having six left-handed bats on the roster, five of which are regulars, Seattle is struggling against right-handed starters so far this season. The Mariners won just seven of their first 19 contests against righties but have gone 9-3 against southpaw pitchers.

So what gives? Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon didn't have much of an answer himself.

"I looked at those stats today. What are we, 9-3 against left-handed starters?" McClendon said. "When you look at our club, and everybody's been trying to attack us with left-handed starters because we've got so many left-handed hitters. I guess I'd attribute it to our left-handed hitters are pretty good hitters against left-handed pitching. I don't know what else to tell you. We should be better against right-handers, but we're not."

Of the left-handed hitters on the Mariners, none are more deadly than Robinson Cano. Outfielder Michael Saunders has been swinging a hot bat since taking over the leadoff spot last week, while third baseman Kyle Seager and outfielder Dustin Ackley actually have better totals against southpaws than righties this year.

Worth noting
• A's lefty Fernando Abad has not allowed a run over his first 14 outings, and his 13 1/3 innings pitched are second-most in the Majors among pitchers who have yet to give up a run.

• The Mariners have a chance to record their fourth straight series win on Wednesday. Comments