GAME: Tigers (7-5, T1, AL Central, +1.5 GA) at Mariners (6-8, 3rd, AL West, -4.0 GB). GAME #: 15. SERIES: 1st of 3 games. MEETING: 1st (Mariners won 2012 series 5-1). WHEN: Tuesday, 7:10 p.m., Safeco Field. STREAKS: Mariners W1 ; Tigers W 2. TV: Root Sports. RADIO: ESPN 710, Mariners Radio Network
On July 30, 2011, a day before that year’s trading deadline, Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik sent pitchers Doug Fister and David Pauley to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for a package that included reliever Charlie Furbush, OF Casper Wells, reliever Chance Ruffin and minor leaguer Francisco Martinez. As it stands now, the trade is starting pitcher Fister for short reliever Furbush.
Mariners fans will be reminded of that piece of swap slop Tuesday when Fister (2-0, 2.77) takes the mound in the first game of a three-game series between the Detroit Tigers and Mariners.
Fister is 20-11, 2.94 with a 1.09 WHIP (walks plus hit divided by innings pitched) in 38 starts since joining the Tigers. Before his 2011 trade, Fister, Seattle’s No. 3 starter behind Felix Hernandez and Jason Vargas, had a 3-12 mark wearing local colors. Immediately after the trade, he was, to the gall of Seattle fans, 8-1 over the balance of the 2011 season. That included a 5-0, 0.53 mark in September, a performance that netted him American League Pitcher of the Month honors.
As an encore, Fister won two postseason games, beating the Yankees in Game 5 of the ALDS and the Rangers in Game 3 of the ALCS.
Plagued by a rib cage injury in 2012, Fister struggled to a 10-10 record, but had one notable performance. On Sept. 27, he set an American League record by striking out nine Kansas City Royals in a row. The MLB record is 10, set by Hall of Famer Tom Seaver in 1970.
Fister has a 2-0 record and will oppose 34-year-old veteran Aaron Harang, the new No. 4 starter in Seattle’s rotation who will be making his Seattle debut. A closer look:
MARINERS: RHP Aaron Harang (10-10, 4.19 ERA, 1.40 WHIP)
The 34-year-old Harang, a native of San Diego, is in his 12th major league season and first with the Mariners. He joined the club last week in a trade with the Colorado Rockies after spending the 2012 season with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Harang, with 105 career wins and 104 losses, began his MLB career in 2002 with Oakland. He’s also pitched for Cincinnati (2003-10) and San Diego (2011). Harang is taking Blake Beavan’s place in Seattle’s rotation.
- LAST START: Oct. 1, 2012, took a no-decision in the Dodgers’ 3-2 win over San Francisco; 1 earned run on 2 hits in 6.0 innings; 3 strikeouts, 2 walks, 0 home runs; 91 pitches, 58 for strikes.
- LAST VS. TIGERS: Aug. 25, 2002, took a no-decision in Oakland’s 10-7 win; 6 earned runs in 5 hits in 3.2 innings; 0 home runs, 88 pitches, 53 for strikes.
- CAREER VS. TIGERS: 0-1, 5.63 ERA in 3 starts covering 16.0 innings; 16 strikeouts to 7 walks, 1 home run, 1.43 WHIP.
- AT SAFECO FIELD: 1-1, 0.44 ERA in 3 starts covering 20.1 innings; 17 strikeouts to 6 walks, 0 home runs, 0.63 WHIP.
- LOVES TO FACE: Omar Infante (0-for-6, .000), Don Kelly (0-for-3, .000), Miguel Cabrera (2-for-15, .133).
- HATES TO FACE: Prince Fielder (14-for-44, .318), Jhonny Peralta (7-for-23, .304), Torii Hunter (2-for-8, .250).
- CURRENT TIGERS VS. HARANG: 28-for-118, .237 BA, 22 strikeouts, 6 walks, 7 home runs, .270 on-base percentage.
TIGERS: RHP Doug Fister (2-0, 2.77 ERA, 1.30 WHIP)
The 29-year-old Fister, a Merced, CA., native in his fifth major league season and third with the Tigers, will make his third start and first against the Mariners, his original major league team. Fister had a poor spring training, but defeated the Yankees 8-3 in his first start April 6, and had no trouble dispatching Toronto in his last start April 11. In the two starts, covering 13.0 innings, Fister has allowed four earned runs on 14 hits, one a home run.
- LAST START: April 11 vs. Toronto, won 11-1; 1 earned run on 8 hits over 8.0 innings; 5 strikeouts, 1 walk, no home runs, 107 pitches, 73 for strikes.
- LAST VS. MARINERS: May 7, 2012, took a no-decision in Detroit’s 3-2 loss at Safeco Field; 0 runs on 4 hits in 7.0 innings; 3 strikeouts, 0 walks, 73 pitches, 51 for strikes.
- CAREER VS. MARINERS: 0-0, 0.00 ERA in 1 start covering 7.0 innings; 3 strikeouts, 0 walks, 0 home runs, 0.57 WHIP.
- AT SAFECO FIELD: 9-16, 3.32 ERA in 36 games, including 35 starts, covering 235.2 innings; 129 strikes, 41 walks, 1.14 WHIP.
- LOVES TO FACE: Jesus Montero (0-for-3, .000), Michael Morse (0-for-3, .000), Justin Smoak (1-for-6, .167), Kendrys Morales (2-for-9, .222).
- HATES TO FACE: Raul Ibanez (2-for-3, .667), Michael Saunders (1-for-2, .500), Endy Chavez (1-for-2, .500).
- CURRENT MARINERS VS. FISTER: 11-for-52, .212 BA, 11 strikeouts, 1 walk, 1 home run, .236 on-base percentage.
MARINERS STATS / NOTES
- CURRENT HOME STAND: Three vs. Houston, four vs. Texas, three vs. Detroit Tuesday-Thursday. The Mariners had their first day off Monday, following 14 consecutive games to open the season.
- Raul Ibanez has hit 68 home runs at Safeco Field, most of any player.
- Kyle Seager, who had two doubles Sunday, is working on a four-game hitting streak.
- Endy Chavez has hits in all three games since his recall from AAA Tacoma.
- In the Mariners’ six victories, they are batting .333 (19-for-57) with runners in scoring position. In eight losses, the Mariners are batting .084 (5-for-59) with RISP. The Mariners have no hits with RISP six times in 14 games.
- The Mariners played 14 consecutive games to open the season before their first day off. Now they will play 16 straight before their next break, May 2.
- Following the three-game series with the Tigers, the Mariners will play three at Texas and three at Houston before returning to Safeco Field for their first series of the year with the L.A. Angels, starting April 25.
|4/16||Tue||vs. Det||RHP Aaron Harang (0-0) vs. Doug Fister (2-0)|
|4/17||Wed||vs. Det||RHP Felix Hernandez (1-2) vs. Max Scherzer (1-0)|
|4/18||Thr||vs. Det||RHP Hisashi Iwakuma (1-0) vs. Justin Verlander (2-1)|
|4/19||Fri||at Tex||LHP Joe Saunders (1-1) vs. Yu Darvish (2-1)|
|4/20||Sat||at Tex||RHP Brandon Maurer (1-2) vs. RHP Nick Tepesch (1-1)|
|4/21||Sun||at Tex||RHP Aaron Harang (0-0) vs. LHP Derek Holland (0-1)|