(1090 The Fan) — Wednesday’s 8-0 against the Tigers — against Justin Verlander, nonetheless — was exactly what the Mariners needed to climb out of the awful funk they’ve been in for the month of September.

And for Thursday, an afternoon game to complete the four game set, Seattle turns to young lefty James Paxton who’ll be getting his third big league start. The 24-year-old was Seattle’s fourth-round pick in 2010 and was called up at the beginning of the month. As a minor leaguer, Paxton was 24-20 with a 3.48 ERA across nearly 365 innings.

Though the Cleveland Indians are still mathematically in the race for the division title in the American League Central, Detroit is going to be difficult to catch up to. The team’s remaining schedule includes the White Sox, the Twins and the Marlins — all teams that have records under .500. In fact, the Marlins currently hold the worst record in the National League.

So what will the Mariners have to do in order to play spoiler and make the Central’s race a little more exciting? Apply everything that was done last night against Verlander to Doug Fister.

Fister, who was sent to the Tigers from the Mariners in the 2011 season, has pitched fairly well at home in 2013. His strikeout-to-walks ratio sits at 4.00 — that’s paired with seven wins out of 14 starts.

However, Fister’s command has been a little shaky recently. He’s issued nine base on balls in his last three starts — hopefully an accuracy slump the M’s can take advantage of.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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