The Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Dodgers will begin a three game interleague series on Friday night in Seattle. The Dodgers were able to snap a five game losing streak on Wednesday night with a win over the San Francisco Giants. Seattle has won five of their last seven games, and are clinging to playoff hope.
The Seattle Mariners enter this series just 2.5 games behind the Oakland Athletics for the final Wild Card spot in the American League. Los Angeles comes into this game just 1.5 games behind the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League West. The outcome of this series will likely play a key role in the playoff race in both leagues. The Los Angeles Dodgers are -127 over the Seattle Mariners on Friday.
Dodgers Scratching and Clawing for Postseason
The Los Angeles Dodgers improved their offense before the trade deadline, acquiring both Manny Machado and Brian Dozier. Both players have performed okay for the Dodgers, but Los Angeles hasn’t had a breakout game from their offense of late. The Dodgers are averaging just over 3 runs per game in the last week, and must find a way to score more runs in this series.
Young Walker Buehler will make the start for the Dodgers on Friday night. The right hander is coming off of a terrific outing in which he pitched seven scoreless innings against the Colorado Rockies last Saturday. Buehler is 5-4 with a 3.24 earned run average on the season and will look to keep the Mariners offense quiet in the series opener.
LeBlanc Pitching Well For Mariners
The Mariners will counter by sending left hander Wade LeBlanc to the mound on Friday. The veteran is 7-2 with a 3.80 earned run average this season for Seattle while pitching as both a starter and a reliever. He earned the victory in his previous start against the division leading Houston Astros. LeBlanc will have his hands full against the Dodgers.
Seattle welcomed Robinson Cano back into the lineup earlier this week after he served an 80 game suspension for PED use. Cano’s bat should strengthen a Mariners lineup who has been inconsistent in 2018. Nelson Cruz has provided the power for Seattle this season, belting 30 home runs to sit in the top five in the American League.
Dodgers Steal Game 1 On The Road
This series is extremely important for both teams, and the Mariners have the slight edge playing at home. Seattle will need LeBlanc to give them a solid outing before turning it over to a dominant bullpen. Seattle closer Edwin Diaz has been electric all season long in closing out games for the Mariners.
The Dodgers have the roster to take off on offense, now they just need to find the consistency. Los Angeles should be the favorite to win the National League, but they have to reach the playoffs first. Look for the Dodgers to break out a bit in this game and earn a win in the series opener. Take the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday.