Mariners Preview (4/16/14): Ace vs. Ace In Arlington
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(1090 The Fan) — Arlington, Texas will host, arguably, the most anticipated pitching matchup of the young 2014 season Wednesday when the Seattle Mariners send Felix Hernandez to the hill to face the Rangers’ Yu Darvish.
Hernandez will be looking to secure his fourth straight win of the season and to continue baffling hitters. To date King Felix holds a 2.11 ERA and 0.750 WHIP with 30 strikeouts over 21 1/3 innings. It’s still early, but for fun, you should admire his strikeouts-to-walks ratio of 15.00.
With another win on Wednesday Hernandez would become the first Mariners starter to win four straight starts to open a year since Bob Wells went 5-0 in 1996.
However, no team has given the King more trouble than the Texas Rangers. He was 0-4 with a 7.57 ERA against them last year and just 12-20 lifetime with a 4.18 ERA in 39 starts.
“Throwing against Texas pumps me up a little bit, yeah,” Hernandez said ahead of Wednesday’s start. “They’ve got me a couple times. I’ve got to do better.”
Since coming off the disabled list earlier this season, Darvish has also shown nothing but dominance in his two starts since returning — not allowing a run in 15 innings of work.
After tossing seven scoreless innings in his season debut, Darvish nearly no-hit the Houston Astros on Friday, as he gave up just one hit and struck out nine in eight innings of work. Remarkably, though, he did not get a decision in his team’s 1-0 triumph.
If both Hernandez and Darvish keep up the brilliance, it’ll be a matter of who makes the first mistake late in the game.
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